Raeford, N.C. — Hoke County deputies raided two Raeford businesses on Monday afternoon and seized dozens of illegal gaming machines.
Sheriff Hubert Peterkin said he has gotten complaints from residents about Club Pond Skill Internet Cafe, at 3010 Club Pond Road, and Triple S Bingo, at 2130 U.S. Highway 401 Business. Robberies and gunfire have occurred at the businesses, he said.
“This has been going on too long,” Peterkin said. “Over my years here as the sheriff, this stuff is banned one minute, the next minute, they find some kind of way, (and) they open back up. They tie our hands – we can’t do it – but today our hands are not tied.”
At least 100 computers set up fro gambling were at the Club Pond operation, while more than 60 were at Triple S Bingo, the sheriff said. Two people were taken into custody at Triple S Bingo, but the sheriff said none of the dozens of people who were playing when the raids took place will face charges.
Some patrons at Club Pond were stunned when members of the SWAT team came through the front door.
“We were told it was legal, only illegal in Cumberland County,” Vistula Hyman said.
One man said it clearly wasn’t his lucky day because he had $400 on the table when the business was raided.
“You never know what the big pot is,” said the man, who identified himself only as Franklin.
Peterkin said he wants to send a message to others who may be running illegal gaming operations in Hoke County.
“This is a nice warning,” he said. “I’m asking anyone in this county who is operating illegal gaming … to shut it down.”