Earlier this week we learned that Jacksonville law enforcement raided illegal gambling operations at several gas stations and businesses.
Police reportedly executed search warrants and confiscated illegal gambling machines at:
- Bucks Country Store
- Citgo Flash Market
- Citgo T-Ricks
- Feeze Kutz
- Han’s Citgo
- Heards and Q Tee’s
- Hi-Life Market
- OK Mart / Valero
- Roadrunner Dist.
- Victory Express
- 501 Vapes
With the exception of the state lottery and the casinos in Hot Springs, West Memphis, and Pine Bluff, Arkansas law generally prohibits gambling.
This isn’t the first time illegal gambling machines have cropped up in Arkansas.
In 2017 authorities in Jefferson County reportedly raided illegal gambling houses in Pine Bluff, and a judge in St. Francis County ruled against illegal gambling machines operated by the company Arkansas Amusements.
Typically these gambling machines are placed in gas stations, liquor stores, or old store fronts.
Some look and operate a lot like slot machines while others appear more like arcade games that let players gamble for money or prizes.
A proposed ballot measure would legalize games like these under the auspices of the Arkansas Lottery. If passed, gambling machines could be installed legally in gas stations, convenience stores, and other businesses as part of the state lottery — meaning many businesses would be able to operate mini-casinos in communities throughout Arkansas.
Gambling is a blight on the community. It is linked to bankruptcy, divorce, substance abuse, domestic violence, and suicide.
If you suspect an illegal gambling house is operating in your community, please notify your local authorities. Then call us at (501) 375-7000.