MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Texas – Game rooms at three gas stations in Montgomery County were shut down after investigators found that cash payouts were being given to people playing eight-liner-type gambling machines, the Montgomery County Pct. 4 Constable's Office said.
Deputies said search warrants were executed at Coleman's Citgo gas station, an Exxon gas station and Bill's 3G's Conoco gas station, all on FM 1485E, where evidence from each machine was collected, as well as the currency that was in each machine.
Deputies said charges against the operators of the businesses running illegal gaming are pending at this time, but that Jimmy Moon, 50, who was found playing one of the games, was arrested on an outstanding third-degree felony warrant for assault of a family member.
Investigators said that during their undercover operation, they were also offered illegal narcotics to purchase, supporting their theory that illegal gaming operations are an attractant to crime.
"In the past, dispatch has received numerous calls for disturbances, assaults, narcotics complaints, welfare checks and even a robbery," the Constable's Office said in a news release.
Deputies added that they hope by curtailing the illegal gaming attractant, there will be a trickle-down effect to other locations they may or may not be aware of.
“We have received many complaints from citizens in reference to these types of places," Constable Rowdy Hayden said. "These types of locations attract criminals, illegal activity and narcotics. Whether we agree or not about gambling in Texas, it is still against the law and we are sworn to uphold the laws of the state.”