******Inside Columbus, Ohio’s Hollywood Casino******

Sometimes it’s hard to determine who is stupider: the thieves or the victim they’ve robbed. The following story might be a photo finish situation, but you decide.

Cash and Carry

It seems 29-year-old David Hayes, a gambler at the Hollywood Casino Columbus, in Ohio, was lucky enough to win $35,800 on October 21, 2012; but that’s where Hayes’ luck ended. In a lawsuit the Ohio man has since filed against the gambling operator, Hayes and one of his attorneys, Joseph Landusky, claim that the casino forced him to take his winnings in the form of cash versus a check, and flashed his personal information to anyone waiting behind him in line, making him vulnerable to a subsequent home robbery once he returned to his house later that night.

The fact that he left his back door open unlocked and accessible that night is but one return volley the casino is firing back at the man in their legal response to his suit.  Hayes claims two armed men entered his house, woke him, and demanded he hand over all 358 stacks of bound hundred-dollar bills before they took off without harming him.

Two of these rocket scientists then actually bragged about the robbery to acquaintances, and have since been arrested and currently await trial; a third man, whose connection to the robbery is unclear, is also being sought now.

Who’s at Fault?

At issue is whether Hayes simply demonstrated carelessness upon returning home, or whether the casino was also negligent in not insisting he take a check, rather than the stacks of cash, for his jackpot winnings. And here’s where the two parties have somewhat differing versions of the story at hand. The casino says in their version of the story that they gave Hayes, at his request, the 358 $100 bills in a stapled manila envelope when he went to cash out at the cage. They also claim they advised him that taking winnings in the form of a check would be a better option in the future.

For his part, Hayes says that, once advised of the check option, he asked to be given one instead of the already presented cash, but was refused, being told it was now too late to change the form of his winnings. Meanwhile, he also stated, the casino cashier wrote down all his personal and identifying information – including his home address – and held it up for him to confirm at the window, making it easy to read for anyone standing behind him as well.

Both parties concur that a casino security guard was sent with him to his car, which is also, of course, a sure sign to anyone who knows casinos that the party in question has a boatload of cash on them.

It will be up to a judge to decide if, as Hollywood Casino ascertains, that Hayes was simply the victim of his own negligence in taking the cash and leaving his back door accessible to entry by anyone, adding up to “unforeseeable misconduct by third parties over whom (the casino) had no control.”