Texas Casino Shooting Suspect Arrested in Eagle Pass Early Sunday Morning

Posted on: December 6, 2021, 12:26h. 

Last updated on: December 6, 2021, 06:17h.

A shooting outside a Texas casino over the weekend has resulted in a single arrest.

Texas casino shooting gambling law
Police stand near a vehicle that was allegedly driven by a suspect who was involved in a shooting outside a Texas casino. Law enforcement did not provide details on what led to the shooting, nor the identity of the man apprehended. (Image: Dimmit County Sheriff’s Office)

Police responded to the Lucky Eagle Casino Hotel in Eagle Pass, Tx., just after midnight early Sunday morning, following a 9-1-1 call regarding an altercation between a casino guest and security. Law enforcement said a firearm was discharged outside the tribal casino, which is owned and operated by the Kickapoo Traditional Tribe of Texas.

The Dimmit County Sheriff’s Office said police were informed by casino security that the alleged assailant fled the scene after the shooting. But the suspect was found and arrested around 12:50 am local time. Police say the person apprehended was driving towards Carrizo Springs.

Officials haven’t yet released the name of the person in custody, confirming only that the individual is a male and that no one was seriously injured in the altercation. The sheriff’s office says the investigation is ongoing.

The Lucky Eagle Casino posted to their social media to inform guests that gaming operations had resumed following a roughly one-hour temporary suspension because of the shooting.

Texas Gambling

Commercial gambling remains illegal in Texas. But the state’s three federally recognized tribes can legally operate Class I and II gaming on their sovereign lands. The Kickapoo are one of the three tribes, and under the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA) can operate bingo-based gaming terminals and certain card games on their reservations in Texas.

The Lucky Eagle is the largest tribal casino in Texas. The border casino, located on the Rio Grande, features more than 3,000 “slot machines” that actually aren’t slot machines at all. IGRA only allows federally recognized tribes to offer their casino guests bingo-based gaming terminals.

On a traditional slot machine found in a commercial market, such as Las Vegas or Atlantic City, the spin outcome is based on a random number generator that is built into each individual machine. The RNG — programmed with a fixed payout rate based on state laws and gaming operations — decides whether or not a spin results in a winning payline.

With a Class II slot-like terminal, each bet is tied to a centralized computer system. After a player wagers a bet, the machine is assigned a group of numbers and the central computer system plays a nearly instant round of bingo.

We have a 20-millisecond window, and anyone in the casino pushing the ‘play’ button during that window is put in the game for that common ball draw,” Lyle Bell, a gaming technology expert, explained prior to his death in 2019.

The reels on a Class II gaming machine are for entertainment purposes only. The reels land on a winning payline if the player hits bingo or a secondary prize.

Casino Shootings

There have been numerous casino shootings in recent months.

Just last month, a shooting in Montana inside the Stateline Casino in Bainville resulted in three people dead. Police say a gunman killed two people he knew before committing suicide.

In October, police in Pennsylvania say a gambler at Parx Casino near Philadelphia was followed to his home in New Jersey after winning around $10,000. Authorities say a man trailed the victim more than 50 miles to his house, where he was gunned down and robbed. A 27-year-old man has been arrested on allegations of committing murder and theft.