Criminal charges filed in gambling bust at Parkville’s Please Stop, Fast Stop

The Platte County Prosecuting Attorney is going after alleged illegal gambling operations in Platte County.

A trial has been scheduled for December in the charge filed in March against Integrity Gaming of Shawnee Mission, Kan. Prosecutor Eric Zahnd filed a charge of felony promotion of gambling against the company, which is accused of operating illegal slot machines in Parkville convenience stores.

“Missouri’s gambling laws prohibit games of chance,” Zahnd said. “We believe these sorts of machines are illegal under Missouri law. Ultimately, the court will have to decide whether they are prohibited.”

A Parkville police officer noticed three gambling devices at the Please Stop store in Parkville last October, according to court documents. During an investigation the owner of the store provided the name of the vendor who installed the machines and they were seized. Two more machines were located at the Fast Stop. These machines, also placed by Integrity Gaming, were also seized.

Detectives examined the machines and how they operated, determining that players must choose a theoretically random option and either lose or win. The game continues in this fashion until players exit the game or “cash out” credits, which are then redeemed at the store. The balance on the receipt is traded for a cash prize. During a forensic examination of the computer systems inside the machines, police were able to capture information on games played and screen captures of those games.

Representatives from Integrity Gaming spoke to the police about the operation of the machines and demonstrated their operation as part of the investigation.

According to court documents, representatives said all plays were predetermined by a database and the games have no skill requirement. The game randomly selects a starting point and advances through pool entries through game play. The database pool is unknown to the player and in able to win more credits the player must advance through the game play, with the results based on chance.

Police say this meets the statutory definition of gambling and the criminal charge was filed in March.