CLEWISTON, Fla. — Clewiston police chief recently called out four arcades for alleged “illegal gambling” - and three out of the four have closed.
During a Clewiston City Commissioner's meeting in early December, Chief Thomas Lewis briefed the officials on what’s being done about the arcades. He said he had sent letters to all four establishments, saying police had suspicions of illegal gambling activities taking place on their premises.
The first to respond to Chief Lewis's letter was the ‘Good Times Arcade’. Chief Lewis stated, “I subsequently met with the owner of Good Times, and he has voluntarily closed the business.”
‘The Triple 7’ Arcade's owner met with Lewis and also agreed to close temporarily. Lewis remarked, “He is interested in opening under legal premises in compliance with our city ordinance.”
However, not all responses were as compliant. ‘Vicky’s’ arcade also agreed to close, but Lewis said, when police visited the location they were still letting patrons in and locked the officers out.
“We ultimately made entry into the business and ended up getting into a foot chase with some folks that bailed out the back door,” Lewis added.
After some later conversations, Lewis said the owner of Vicky’s arcade agreed to permanently close, too. The fate of the fourth arcade, ‘May Arcade’, remains uncertain. Chief Lewis explained, “I have yet to speak to the owner - they sent their security guard to my office who I spoke with at length.” Despite their current operational status, Chief Lewis assured that the police department has a plan of action in place.
We reached out to the police chief and he declined to go into further detail past what he said at the December 18 meeting. However, he noted that no arrests have been made in this.