Traffic stop for tail light leads Las Vegas police to man accused of cheating while playing blackjack
LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — A traffic stop for a broken tail light led Las Vegas Metropolitan police officers to arrest the driver who had a warrant on a charge of cheating at a local casino.
Police arrested Jose Escobar-Fuentes near the intersection of Century Drive and Stewart Avenue early in the morning on Nov. 18, records showed.
The officer pulled Escobar-Fuentes over for an inoperable tail lamp, an arrest report said. When the officer ran Escobar-Fuentes’ name, an active warrant on a felony charge of cheating at a gambling game appeared.
According to court records, Escobar-Fuentes is accused of cheating while playing blackjack at the Aliante Hotel & Casino in 2018.
While playing the game, the dealer noticed Escobar-Fuentes “present[ed] an unusual bent card on his land hand played.” Investigators reviewed video surveillance, showing Escobar-Fuentes had removed the queen of hearts from the table, concealing it in his hand under the table, they wrote in documents filed with the Nevada Gaming Control Board.
Later in the game, video evidence showed Escobar-Fuentes removing a non-face card from the table and switching it out, investigators said.
“He then reintroduced the queen of hearts by presenting a pair of suited queens (hearts) as his current hand in order to win a bonus wager he placed prior to the start of the hand,” investigators wrote.
A casino official pulled Escobar-Fuentes off the table, but was told not to detain him. Instead, security was told to identify him and issue him a trespass notice.
Records show a warrant for Escobar-Fuentes’ arrest was served in 2019, but he was released to immigration officials.
Attempts to locate Escobar-Fuentes remained unsuccessful until the Metro stop.
Court records show Escobar-Fuentes agreed to a charge of disorderly conduct, a misdemeanor and was sentenced to 120 days suspended. He was ordered to pay a fee, perform community service, attend counseling and stay away from the casino.
There was no mention in court documents of any monetary value gained or lost by Escobar-Fuentes or the casino.