A Harrisburg man admits he cheated at Hollywood Casino last week.
Claudie Kenion 41 said he cheated at the blackjack table.
"Other people was cheating I just followed suit to be honest " Kenion told abc27. “A lot of people were doing it. I did it. I didn’t think nothing of it. I didn’t think it would be no formal charges pressed or nothing.”
But Kenion was wrong.
He was arrested by state police and charged with a new violation aimed at table games called Title 4 Prohibited Acts. The crime carries a fine of $75 000 to $150 000 and up to five years in prison for the first offense.
Kenion said he was shocked he was charged. He said he thought he would simply be asked to leave the casino.
"I thought I was gonna be kicked out " Kenion said. “If I knew there was any charges being pressed I would have never did it. I would have never did it.”
Captain Tim Allue Director of the PA State Police Gaming Enforcement Office said anyone who believes that cheating at a table game isn’t a serious offense is “making a serious mistake.”
"I don’t know why anyone would think they could go into a convenience store and steal something and walk out the door and be told 'Oh well please don’t come back " Allue said.
Police said Kenion increased his bets by at least one chip when he realized he had a winning hand and the dealer wasn’t looking. They said surveillance video shows he did it 13 times.
Kevin O’Toole Executive Director of the PA Gaming Control Board said anyone who sits down at a table game should expect that they are being closely watched.
"Oh it’s very serious " O’Toole said. “There’s no question that anybody that commits illegal conduct in the casino will be prosecuted.”
Kenion said his story should serve as a cautionary tale to other gamblers.
"I was wrong " he said. “I was wrong. I took advantage of it. I was wrong.”
Still Kenion said he has hired a lawyer and plans to fight the charges.