Daily Archives: August 17, 2021

A Brief Look at Crime 8/09 – 8/15

Baby Found in Locked Car at North Las Vegas Casino, Gambler Arrested

A baby was taken to a Nevada hospital Friday night for an exam by authorities. That’s after it was found alone in a car parked at Bighorn Casino in North Las Vegas on a hot’s summer’s evening. A man was later arrested, and police said he was gambling in the venue and appeared intoxicated. The child is believed to be younger than one year of age. The infant was in a pediatric unit earlier this weekend, /KLAS/, a local TV station, reported.

The baby’s condition was unknown as of Sunday. It is unclear if the baby suffered any injuries. The windows were partially rolled down when the baby was seen by police officers. The car was locked. Temperatures outside on Friday reached a high of 117 degrees in Las Vegas, according to AccuWeather. Las Vegas has been facing record-setting temperatures. Mitchell Anthony Hooks, 39, of Las Vegas was located in the casino at about 8:15 pm Friday. He was arrested by North Las Vegas police officers. Hooks was charged with child abuse and leaving a child unattended in a motor vehicle, /KLAS/ said.

Sheriff’s deputy tracks, dismantles cockfighting operations in LA County

Tucked away off a dirt road in the middle of a remote canyon in unincorporated Chatsworth, a large cockfighting breeding ranch has been uncovered and brought down by the LA County Sheriff’s Department. The lead deputy on the case, Joel Bronson, worked the investigation for more than a year before it was finally time to remove about 400 roosters and hens from the property. The cages were hidden behind a circle of plywood, across a rickety makeshift bridge. Bronson said the ranch was one of thousands of cockfighting enterprises in the area of LA County he tracks.

“I feel good about being here. This is the payoff of a lot of work to finally take this guy’s animals away from him,” Bronson said. Bronson has been with the sheriff’s department 15 years and has become an expert in dismantling this type of crime. “A lot of times, it’s drug dealers and it’s a hobby for them. It’s a flashy, high-profile hobby that they can make a lot of money on and throw parties, and have a cockfight and do a bunch of gambling,” Bronson said.

30 people arrested after authorities break up Florida cockfighting ring

Thirty people, including a juvenile, were arrested after a months-long investigation into an illegal cockfighting ring, Florida’s Agricultural Law Enforcement office reported Tuesday. Dubbed “Operation Fowl Play,” officers broke up the ring last week in Mayo, Fla., a rural city in North Florida, as officers armed with a warrant busted in to find a crowd gathered to watch roosters fight to their death. The report said they came upon “a gathering of participants and onlookers actively engaged in the illegal blood sport of fighting or baiting of animals.” Police K9 had to chase down several suspects who fled the area on foot.

A search of the area uncovered three dead roosters and 41 live roosters that were being readied to fight. All of those arrested, who were from across Florida and Georgia, will be charged with third degree felonies for attending the fighting or baiting of animals. Others are facing additional charges for owning, possessing or selling equipment for use in an animal fight, while another is facing child neglect charges for the juvenile that was in attendance. Guns, cash and drugs were also found, according to the state’s Department of Agriculture.

New charges brought against former casino CEO

The former CEO of a west-central Wisconsin casino accused of embezzling over $72,000 from the business is now facing additional federal charges. The indictment charges Oustigoff for filing tax returns that underreported his income from 2015 to 2018 — the years he is accused of embezzling from Turtle Lake Casino. According to the indictment, the then-general manager and CEO misapplied casino funds on eight occasions between December 2015 and January 2018. Those incidents of alleged embezzlement total about $72,600 taken from the business operated by the St. Croix Chippewa Indians of Wisconsin. If Oustigoff is convicted, each of the eight embezzlement counts carries a maximum penalty of up to 20 years in federal prison. Filing false income tax returns carries a smaller penalty of up to three years in prison per count.

Rivers Casino Visitor Arrested After Allegedly Leaving 7-Year-Old Alone in Car

An Illinois man was arrested Sunday after allegedly leaving a 7-year-old boy in a car parked at Rivers Casino in Des Plaines. The incident comes a couple of days after a similar allegation against another person involving a baby in the much warmer Nevada climate. John Elliott, 44, of Schiller Park, Ill., was charged with endangering the life or health of a child following the Rivers Casino episode, according to the /Daily Herald/, an Illinois newspaper.

Elliott allegedly left the boy in the car at about 7:30 pm Sunday. The child climbed out of the car 20 minutes later, police said. Soon after, the boy went up to casino security guards. He told them he was alone after the adult went inside the gaming property. Local cops learned about the incident at about 8:30 p.m. That night, Illinois Gaming Board agents reportedly apprehended Elliott before he left the casino. If convicted, Elliott could be fined up to $25,000 and be sentenced to between two and five years in prison.

For more information on the dangers of gambling, please visit CASINO WATCH & CASINO WATCH FOUNDATION