Nevada mulls over blacklisting casino chip thief

Nevada Increases Black Book Nominations

In an effort to prevent certain individuals from accessing casinos across Nevada, the state has compiled a “black book” of patrons who are permanently banned from visiting any of the state’s casinos. To be included on this list, individuals must meet specific criteria, such as receiving a ban from court or having a felony conviction.

Following a meeting of the Nevada Gaming Control Board (NGCB), it was announced that the list of banned individuals may be expanded to include Neal Ahmed Hearne, a person convicted of stealing chips from a casino several years ago. If Hearne is added to the black book, he will become the 37th individual to be permanently banned from all casinos across Nevada, as reported by the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

During the NGCB meeting, Senior Deputy Attorney General John Michela presented video evidence of Hearne grabbing chips from a casino table and fleeing the area on foot. Michela also revealed that Hearne had engaged in similar unsophisticated crimes in more than a dozen casinos across Clark County. Hearne was subsequently arrested and sentenced in January 2018.

NGCB Chairman Kirk Hendrick expressed shock at Hearne’s actions, stating that his criminal activities were brazen and prolific. The NGCB unanimously voted to nominate Hearne to be permanently banned from all casinos in the state, citing his felony conviction as a key factor in their decision.

With the nomination in place, Hearne will have the opportunity to defend himself before the Nevada Gaming Commission officially decides whether to add him to the black book. A formal hearing will be organized, during which Hearne will be invited to attend and present his case.