Casino Crime Roundup: Monarch Casino Defendant Pleads Guilty in Theft

Posted on: March 12, 2024, 12:18h. 

Last updated on: March 12, 2024, 12:31h.

A man accused in a record-setting $500K larceny from Monarch Casino Resort and Spa in Black Hawk, Colo. entered a guilty plea last week after a plea deal.

Monarch Casino Resort and Spa
Monarch Casino Resort and Spa, pictured above. The Black Hawk, Colo. casino was the site of a theft. (Image: Monarch Casino)

Juan Ivan Gutierrez Zambrano, 32, pled guilty to two counts of criminal mischief in Gilpin County District Court on Friday, according to the Denver Post. He will be sentenced on April 12.

Zambrano was initially charged with two counts of theft of between $100K and $1 million but those charges were dropped.

Formerly of Mexico, he could be deported after the guilty plea.

Zambrano was given the money in exchange for receiving boxes filled with stolen cash.

Another defendant in last year’s case, Sabrina Eddy, 45, is scheduled to go on trial in August. Eddy was charged with two counts of theft.

Eddy, a cage cashier, allegedly put 10, $50K stacks of cash into boxes, covered them with rags, and sealed the boxes.

Eddy then drove the money in a minivan to a St. Anthony Hospital parking lot and gave the loot to Zambrano.

Eddy initially said she was following orders from a supervisor. She claimed that two men told her via a phone call and through texts to collect $300K and take it to St. Anthony Hospital in Lakewood, Colo. after problems arose with a UPS order.

When she returned, Eddy claims she got another text to bring $200K to a man. Eddy complied with that request, as well. But when Eddy took a polygraph, it showed she was lying.

Eddy then said acquaintances of her deceased ex-husband “forced her to engage in the theft after levying threats against her family members,” according to the Post.

A third suspect involved in the plot is on the lam.

It was the largest casino theft in the history of Colorado.

Meth Suspect Ran from Cops

A suspect fled from California’s Black Oak Casino on March 4 after he allegedly stole cash and later tossed out suspected drugs.

The cash was swiped from a car at the casino. Christopher Miller, 26, of California, ran from the casino after deputies approached him.

During a chase, Miller discarded a half-pound of methamphetamine (meth). Police did not release a value on the drugs.

Miller was charged with transporting a controlled substance for sale. His bail was set at $50K.