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Girard cops shut down gambling trailer after players complain

Tuesday, July 31, 2018


Two men who were charged after police said they ripped people off through illegal gambling in a 'gaming trailer' are scheduled to appear in Girard Municipal Court today.

A police report said multiple people complained from Wednesday to Monday that they lost hundreds of dollars playing the makeshift games in attempt to win expensive prizes.

One person reported losing $245, another reported losing $600. The game was rigged so people would keep investing but never get the total number of points needed, the report said.

Police approached the men, Samuel Staffen of Georgia and James Locke of Warren, while they were parked on 307 South State St. and discovered they didn't have gambling permits and were not permitted on the property.

Staffen told police he had been running illegal gambling games for years.

Police found two televisions, two stereos, a vacuum cleaner, toaster, cash and pieces for the game including tickets, a board, clothes pins and a laser in the trailer.

The men were charged with gambling, cheating and criminal trespass. Locke was also charged with falsification for identifying himself with his brother's name after he was arrested.

Locke was booked into the Trumbull County Jail. Jail records show Staffen hasn't been booked.