Investigator: Cops tampered with games of chance

6:37 PM, Sep 27, 2012   |    comments
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CLEVELAND -- Three police detectives have been reassigned for tampering with a coin machine at a local gas station that offers players a chance to win big money, Channel 3 News confirmed.

A surveillance camera caught the three detectives tapping on the side of the machine in order to jar money loose, said Fifth District Commander Wayne Drummond.

He said it was unclear how much cash the officers got from the machine at the Shell station on the corner of East 55th Street and St. Clair Avenue.

Known as the "Bonus Hole," the machine requires players to drop quarters into a slot at the top of the game. The quarters then land on a flat surface that contains hundreds of other quarters, as well as $5, $10 and $20 bills. 

An electric arm pushes the coins and cash forward and whatever falls off the surface is kept by the player.

"They were lightly tapping on the side of the machine" in order to knock cash and coins off the surface, Drummond said.

The gas station owner refused to press charges against the three detectives but asked that they be kept from the store.

When contacted by Channel 3 News, the owner denied any knowledge of the incident or that there was surveillance camera footage.

"He was very reluctant...he doesn't want anything done," said Drummond.

Drummond said he reassigned the detectives to the day shift to more closely supervise them.

"Do I think it was criminal? Absolutely not," said Drummond.

"They apologized. They didn't view that as being inappropriate or wrong. I told them that it doesn't matter, it's the perception." 

The incident has been the talk of the Fifth District police station.


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