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People are winning � and losing � big at this hot NC arcade trend.
But is it legal?
Behind the locked front door and tinted windows of the Tank Arcade, people are winning � and losing � big.
Garish aquatic creatures swim across a 55-inch TV screen embedded in the six-foot game table.
If go here shoot and kill one � sometimes a whale, a sea dragon or monster crab � you win points.
Points are redeemable for cash or more credits to keep playing.
This is the fish game.
Charlotte has one of the highest concentrations of fish game arcades with at least 40, although authorities say there could be twice that many in the city.
In Greensboro, for example, police have banned fish games.
In other cities, though � including Charlotte and Raleigh � fish game arcades openly advertise, with neon lights, big banners and packed parking lots.
In the city of Concord, officials took up the issue on their own last year and put restrictions on arcades.
Even some in the arcade business want clearer rules.
He sold his last arcade, in Salisbury, after a part-time employee was fatally shot inside during a domestic argument.
Inside a typical arcade, rows of stand-up arcade machines, computers and fish games cast a colorful glow inside otherwise low-lit buildings.
The atmosphere is casual, with upbeat music playing over house speakers.
Some customers stay in the arcades hours at a time, managers say.
Inside, customers are often fed free link and drinks.
The cost to play, though, is high for some.
Hotline calls jumped from 3,825 between July 2015 and June 2016 to 6,113 calls from July 2017 to June 2018.
The lottery and casino games are the most-often cited problems, with sweepstakes and arcades making up about 16 percent of the people who are referred to gambling counseling through the hotline.
September 29, 2016 3:30 PM Some people are olympic video gaming poker machines susceptible to an addictive video game than others, Gray said.
Arcades in North Carolina, he said, are often found near low-income neighborhoods, where people can least afford to lose.
You can lose an entire paycheck in one evening.
Since then, the games have been found in arcades worldwide from Singapore to Olympic video gaming poker machines />In the United States, news reports show law enforcement officials have raided fish arcades in places like Hawaii, Colorado, California and Florida.
In North Carolina, fish tables have taken off the last 18 months, police say.
Similarly, the SBI � which has special agents to investigate gambling in North Carolina � would not say specifically whether fish games violate the law.
So far, the SBI has not raided any fish game arcades or made any fish game-related arrests in North Carolina.
The issue, then, has been left to local officials.
The patchwork of enforcement also extends to local zoning and business regulations.
Others deny operating permits on the basis that gambling is outlawed.
Some crimes, he suspects, go unreported to police because operators may be worried they could be arrested on gambling charges.
Nearly every form of betting is considered illegal gambling in North Carolina https://sellingonthenet.info/games/sloth-man-gaming.html for the state-run lottery, the and bingo games run by charities.
Even buddies playing for keeps around a small poker table is technically illegal but rarely, if ever, enforced.
Many games have faced legal scrutiny before the fish game: video poker, slot machines and, most recently.
The atmosphere is casual, with upbeat music playing.
Many locations have installed ventilation systems and allow smoking inside.
The locations the Observer visited have dozens of security cameras and an armed guard.
There are customers who say the arcade is a safe alternative to the street.
Dale and Vonne Gregory say olympic video gaming poker machines workers and customers at Tank Arcade are like family.
They say they left their jobs at a major multi-national shipping and delivery company to manage the arcade.
Now, they manage two locations in Charlotte and have plans to open a third.
Vonne Gregory says she vets the machines inside olympic video gaming poker machines make sure they comply with state gambling laws and to make sure the payouts and accounting for cash are fair.
Several of their regular customers are senior citizens.
They told the Observer that the arcade has improved their neighborhood by establishing a business in a vacant building where otherwise squatters, prostitutes or drug dealers would take residence.
Arcade managers check this out they pay a percentage � usually around 25 percent � of the weekly take from fish games to the supplier who owns the table and check this out leasing it to the arcade.
Calvert with the Greensboro Police Department suspects the secretive chain of command is by design.
Police there have been among the most aggressive in the state to shut casino video online fish game arcades.
At the peak of operation last summer, there were about 45 arcades in Greensboro.
Now, there are only a handful.
Calvert says those are operating underground and remain under investigation.
Greensboro saw a mass exodus of fish games in late 2017 after its police chief sent a warning letter to operators, saying they had to close their doors or face criminal prosecution.
Most arcades heeded the warning and left voluntarily.
Only a few stayed open, prompting police to take their equipment and arrest operators.
One of those operators hired a lawyer and sued the city.
His lawyer, Jonathan Trapp of Durham, asked a money casino games for a temporary injunction or restraining order against police.
But, that olympic video gaming poker machines denied.
Trapp says his client operated games of skill, allowed under state law.
The fish game, he contends, requires strategy, timing and experience.
You have to figure out how the table is running.
Arcades are often associated with a high frequency of robberies, shootings and other crimes, says Eddie Caldwell, attorney with the N.
There have been deadly robberies and homicides in many arcades across the state including in Charlotte, Burlington, Salisbury and Greensboro.
And, the amount of cash inside, police say, attracts criminals.
In Lumberton, for instance, three men ambushed a security guard in a parking lot as he walked a winning customer to their vehicle, The Robesonian newspaper.
Some olympic video gaming poker machines, he suspects, go unreported to police because operators may be worried they could be arrested on gambling charges.
CMPD, though, has yet to aggressively pursue shutting down the fish games.
Instead, the police department is waiting to see the results of one pending gambling case resulting from an arrest and search warrant at an arcade on Westinghouse Boulevard in December.
The manager there is charged with a felony for operating five or more illegal gambling machines.
He did not return several phone calls from the Observer.
CMPD detectives have visited many locations to give advice on securing doors and setting up video surveillance systems.
Vonne Gregory says she wants to start a business network among arcade managers to help each other reduce crime, improve safety and report people who try to cheat or cause problems inside an arcade.
If you or someone you know needs help with problem gambling, the state of North Carolina provides to individuals and their loved ones.
City officials have clarified that the city has placed restrictions on the arcades, limiting where they can locate and requiring enhanced security measures.
January 06, 2020 06:00 AM The Carolina Panthers are in the midst of their head coaching search.
There are four candidates that have become the main contenders a week into the offseason.
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