Nevada fines Laughlin casino record $500k for security guards roughing up patrons

Nevada fines Laughlin casino record $500k for security guards roughing up patrons
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LAS VEGAS (AP) — Nevada gambling regulators fined a hotel-casino in Laughlin a record $500,000 in a settlement with the state Gaming Control Board stemming from a pair of incidents involving security officers who roughed up a patron and a resort employee nearly two years ago.

The Nevada Gaming Commission unanimously approved the settlement Thursday with Don Laughlin’s Riverside Resort, which fired four of the security officers and reassigned the fifth to a different job following the separate incidents in 2022, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported.

The commission said the fine was the highest ever assessed for incidents of their kind.

One incident involved a customer who wouldn’t leave a slot machine area during an accounting check at the resort about 100 miles (160 kilometers) south of Las Vegas along the Colorado River bordering Arizona. The other involved an unidentified Riverside employee who was falsely accused of smoking marijuana during his shift, the Riverside said.

In both cases, people were injured when in the hands of the security guards. The casino patron was thrown to the ground and reported a leg injury, the newspaper reported.

Riverside officials said they formed a review committee months later to address the incidents and to prevent similar actions from occurring again.

Riverside Chief Operating Officer Matthew Laughlin said during Thursday’s hearing that different security guards were involved in the two incidents, and they failed to follow resort policy. He said the company didn’t assess the personalities of the guards involved in the incidents before their hiring.

“Instead of defusing the situation,” Laughlin said, “they (guards) took it to the next level.”