What would you do if you have robbed a casino and discovered you have cash-out tickets that you can exchange for real money? Would you come back to the same casino again? Well, most with common sense know that it's better not to, but the call of temptation to trick the casino and get away with it is too strong for these greedy robbers, we suppose.
Two men were arrested on August 2 Wednesday, due to suspicion of robbing at gunpoint a casino in Helena, Montana, USA. How were they caught? One of them tried to redeem a stolen cash-out ticket!
According to court documents (filed on August 1 Tuesday), on July 22, two masked men entered the premises of the Best Bet Casino located on Euclid Avenue, brandished what looked like a .45-caliber handgun and a sawed-off shotgun, and successfully stole $500. The weapons were found to be B.B. guns afterwards.
The investigators heard from the casino clerk that one of the suspects were wearing sunglasses and a ski mask, who went up to her and demanded money from the register. She obeyed and she was also asked money from her wallet as well. The clerk had no choice but to give the $300 she had from her wallet. The robber also grabbed some tickets and receipts.
His buddy never went inside the casino but only stood watch outside.
Next day afternoon, another staff of the casino called 911 to report that a man had attempted to redeem a cash-out ticket which happened to be stolen during the robbery incident. The suspicious individual was described to be blue-eyed and brown-haired and drove a late-model Subaru. The staff remembered the same man went inside the casino early in the morning to play machines.
They confronted the man, and he said he found the ticket in the parking lot. The casino staff pointed out that somebody has used correction fluid on the ticket to alter the date.
The man was identified to be Theodore Ebbie Dodge Jr, age 40, resident of East Helena. He is a parolee and has previous convictions of theft, burglary and forgery. He is jailed on charges of robbery and burglary.
Upon questioning, detectives were told by Dodge that he found the ticket inside a duffel bag just outside of the casino. He unwittingly added that a B.B. gun was also inside the bag and it was in his car, adding "that don't look good". During the interview, he admitted being high on methamphetamine. After investigation, the duffel bag was found in Dodge's car, which contained two B.B. guns and a black-colored face mask.
Detectives then interviewed the second suspect, Thomas John Hansen, age 46, resident of Helena, who is on probation. He has prior convictions of drug possession, drug dealing and criminal endangerment.
A urinalysis test proved Hansen to be using meth and methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA). He told detectives that in the middle console of his pickup he had syringes. Upon retrieving the needles, they found more stolen tickets from the casino.
Dodge finally pleaded guilty a few days after the robbery, and said he was the one who waited at the door holding a sawed-off B.B. shotgun. Hansen also admitted to his involvement in the robbery as well, and is jailed on charges of burglary, robbery and criminal possession of dangerous drugs.
The two men are held in lieu of $50,000 bond.