Pennsylvania regulator bans more players for leaving children unattended
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board has banned four players from casinos.
US.- The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) has banned four adults from entering Commonwealth casinos through placement on the PGCB Involuntary Exclusion List after they left children unattended while they gambled. It also rejected requests from two people to be removed from that list.
The four new bans were the result of approvals of petitions presented by the agency’s Office of Enforcement Counsel (OEC) and involved nine children:
As quoted in the release, action has been taken on the following people:
- A male patron was placed on the Involuntary Exclusion List after leaving five children, including an infant, along with 1-, 9-, 10- and 14-year-olds in the food court of Valley Forge Casino Resort. The children were left unattended for an hour and 12 minutes while the adult wagered at slot machines;
- A male patron was placed on the Involuntary Exclusion List after leaving a 12-year-old unattended in a vehicle in the parking lot of Valley Forge Casino Resort. The child was left unattended for 5 minutes while the adult wagered at the sportsbook;
- A male patron was placed on the Involuntary Exclusion List after leaving a 13-year-old unattended in a vehicle in the Harrah’s Philadelphia Casino and Racetrack’s parking garage. After the adult male attempted to enter the casino with the child and claimed he was his brother, the child returned to the vehicle while the adult entered the casino and wagered at the sportsbook. The child was left unattended for 15 minutes; and,
- A female patron was placed on the Involuntary Exclusion List after leaving a 2-year-old and a 14-year-old unattended in a vehicle in the parking lot of Mohegan Pennsylvania Casino. The children were left unattended for over two hours while the adult gambled at slot machines.
- Additionally, the Board denied requests to be removed from the Involuntary Exclusion List by two female adults who were placed on the list in 2020 for separate incidents involving a total of 3 children left unattended to gamble in casinos.
The board said its actions serve as a reminder that adults are prohibited from leaving minors unattended in the parking lot or garage, a hotel, or other venues at a casino. “Leaving minors unattended at a Pennsylvania casino also subjects the offending adult to criminal prosecution in addition to exclusion from all Pennsylvania casinos,” it said.
The PGCB said that in 2022 it identified 303 incidents of adults leaving children unattended to gamble at Pennsylvania casinos. The cases involved 486 minors.
See also: Pennsylvania gaming revenue hits record in 2022
In November, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board announced the launch of a new awareness campaign aimed at preventing children from being left unattended while an adult supervisor gambles at a casino. The “Don’t Gamble with Kids” campaign was spurred by concern over the number of minors being left in vehicles in casino parking lots or hotel rooms.
The board warned parents and guardians of the potential consequences of abandoning their children. These include up to a lifetime ban by the individual casino, placement on the board’s publicly available Exclusion List, in which individuals lose the privileges of entering all casinos in the Commonwealth, criminal charges filed by law enforcement and investigation by the applicable county’s Department of Children and Youth Services.
Gaming Control Board executive director Kevin O’Toole said: “This has been an issue dating back to the opening of casinos in 2006. However, as the number of venues has increased and new types of gaming have been added, more incidents have been reported.”
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