Lakeside Casino pays thousands after allowing two minors onto gambling floor
Lakeside Casino in Osceola is paying a $40,000 penalty for allowing two minors on the gambling floor in separate instances in January. One cases involved a 12 year old who got onto the floor with his mother, and the other involved a 14 year old who got onto the floor with her mother and played a slot machine.
Lakeside general manager David Monroe told the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission Thursday security measures were not followed.
“The incidents that occurred in January are the result of a couple of employees failing to follow the training and guidelines that they had committed to,” he says. “In both instances, the minors would not have gained access if the employees and just to even a marginal job.”
Monroe says they took a number of steps to ensure there is not a repeat. “First of all, we did the obvious we retrained every employee on property and had them sign an acknowledgment that they understood that it’s everybody’s responsibility on the property, not just security’s. And we went back and retrained the security officers on turnstile responsibilities,” Monroe says. “And we added a step where the security manager and assistant security manager were the only two that could approve somebody work in those stations. So not only do they have to demonstrate the ability to verbally stay, they understood the job.”
He says they reviewed the entry area and put in a new turnstile at the entrance to the gambling floor. “The new turnstile has a physical arm barrier that requires a security guard to push a button that says I’ve acknowledged and I won’t let you in. We upgraded our ID scanning system to a state of the art system which gives our security guards a better opportunity to identify fraudulent IDs,” he says. Monroe also apologized to the Commission.
Commission member Allen Ostergren says his first thoughts on the violations involved a possible license suspension. “I can tell you in my mind, when I first read this, I was extremely punitive in my thoughts as to what should happen,” Ostergren says. He says there was a lot going on in the one case with a mother bringing a 12 year old to the casino near midnight.
Ostergren says the measures taken by the casino made him decided to go along with the fine. “But I can tell you and I want to tell other licensees, had there not been this level of remedial measures taken, I would have, I would have had a very hard time agreeing to just this kind of financial penalty, it would have been a lot more or something that would have hurt a lot more,” Ostergren says.
The Commission unanimously approved the $40,000 penalty.