Angie man among those sought for Harrah’s cheating scheme

Published 9:17 am Monday, June 23, 2014

A former blackjack dealer at Harrah’s Casino and four others, including an Angie man, are wanted for cheating and swindling more than $32,000 from the business.

Louisiana State Police began investigating in May after Harrah’s notified them of possible cheating.

The New Orleans Advocate reports Breana Lewis, 24, of New Orleans, who worked at the casino for about a year, was allegedly seen illegally awarding bets to four patrons who apparently knew her and were at her table.

The bets cost Harrah’s $32,022.50.

Arrest warrants have been issued for Lewis, Cornelius Wells, 34, and Clifford E. Carter, 31, both of New Orleans; Jeffery Sheridan Jr., 25, of Angie and Annette Davis, 43, of Gretna. Each faces two counts of conspiracy to commit cheating and swindling and two counts of cheating and swindling.

Authorities ask anyone with information about their whereabouts to contact Louisiana State Police at 504-533-6919.

Lewis has been at large for three weeks, state police said. She had been expected to meet with investigators but failed to show up, and authorities “haven’t been able to locate her in the New Orleans metro area,” said Melissa Matey, a state police spokeswoman.

The alleged scheme unfolded during two late-night sessions on May 17 and May 22 when four players “who appear to personally know each other and personally know Lewis” played at the casino, according to court documents.

Lewis allegedly awarded the players “bets that were not winners” under blackjack guidelines, according to felony arrest warrants, which allege that Lewis was seen “cheating and swindling” by her supervisor.

“Their actions appeared to be preplanned, and these four patrons were wagering on just the blackjack table Lewis was dealing on over these two days,” Master Trooper Jeffery Argrave wrote in an affidavit.

The scam cost the casino $4,325 during one sitting and $27,697.50 during the other, according to the warrants.

Casino security questioned the four players after their second session and got some of the money back. “During this interview, the four voluntarily returned a sum of $12,855 in cash and chips back to Harrah’s Casino,” Argrave wrote. “The four then left the property after the interview.”

It wasn’t clear why the players were allowed to leave the casino after returning the money, and attempts to reach casino officials for comment were unsuccessful.