Learning about the history of casinos inevitably leads to the stories of daring heists. These heists aren’t all in such a distant point in the past. Back in February, a group of criminals set off fireworks inside MGM National Harbor casino in Maryland as a diversion. Initially, the guests at the casino feared that the loud noises created by the fireworks were actual gunshots. Panic immediately broke out, as someone shouted “shooter, active shooter, get out!” As panic broke out, the thieves took the opportunity to steal chips from the casino.
Tammy Robinson, who was at the casino celebrating a family member’s birthday said “it was very scary. The whole situation was very terrifying. I will never go back there ever again”. Others took to posting on social media, claiming there was an active shooter on the casino floor. Everyone who was present that night agrees that it was a terrifying experience.
The whole incident sparked a discussion on social media about how safe environment casinos really are. Online casinos were quick to point out that online casinos offer safer gambling than their land-based counterparts. And quite frankly, we have to agree.
Montana Casino Robbers
Taking a closer look, there are multiple cases where casinos have been in the news for crime-related incidents. In a Montana casino, earlier this year, two women committed armed robbery. One of them pulled out a gun and stole several bottles of whisky, however, surprisingly they did not steal any money. Before fleeing to their car, a shot was fired in the air. The two were caught and apprehended after a high speed car chase near a school.
Casino Parking Lots Report High Crime Rate
Car thieves are reportedly hitting up casino lots in Mississippi and Louisiana. A few casinos in Vegas have been targeted as well and it remains to be seen how they’re going to protect their parking lots.
There are groups of criminals hitting up casino parking lots and specifically stealing catalytic converters. In April two men were arrested outside of Riverwalk Casino in Mississippi, cops found several catalytic converters in their truck. There’s no telling when authorities will get this under control, and if potential thieves will try stealing more than just car parts!
Crime Rates in Gambling Cities
When it comes to violent crime rates in the United States, major gambling hubs don’t differ much from other cities. For instance, with 618.90 violent crimes per 100,000 people, Las Vegas is a safer environment than cities like Seattle, Denver, or Minneapolis.
It’s a bit of a different situation when it comes to Atlantic City, which has a significantly higher robbery rate than Vegas. The same goes for the number of assaults reported per 100,000 people.
Of all the gambling-friendly cities in the US, New Orleans seems to be the most unsafe, with the murder rate being 39.50 per 100,000 people. This makes the Big Easy the fourth most dangerous city in the country.
As casinos are establishments dealing with huge sums of money, they are an attractive target for criminals. Criminals know this but so do cops, as well as casino owners. For this reason, these places usually feature advanced security measures – surveillance, security guards, access control, and so on. With this said, players and guests at land based casinos can still be at risk of being in a dangerous situation, whereas players at online casinos do not face that kind of risk to their safety.
Health Risks Might be an Even More Serious Problem
Although there is a chance that a land-based casino might get hit by thieves, the real danger is bad air quality. The thing is that in most states, smoking is permitted in casinos.
In Nevada, for instance, indoor smoking is banned in most establishments apart from casinos, stand-alone bars, and so on. It’s a similar situation when it comes to Atlantic City, whose 11 land-based casinos are allowed to have up to 25% of the gambling area where smoking is allowed.
There’s an ongoing debate in the Garden State on whether the government should take it a step further and completely ban smoking. According to a poll conducted by the Stockton University, most residents of New Jersey are now in favor of a total smoking ban in casinos, citing secondhand smoke as the main reason behind it.
Casinos, however, have their own arguments against it. According to them, such a move could lead to a drastic drop in revenue, the reason being that indoor smoking is one of the reasons why smokers keep coming to AC casinos.
Online Casinos Offer a Safer Alternative
Being able to gamble from home is one of the main selling points of online casinos. That’s the reason why the popularity of internet gambling skyrocketed during the 2020 COVID pandemic when the entire world went into a lockdown.
However, that’s just one in the long list of advantages of online casinos over their land-based counterparts. Another important advantage is safety. As you’re gambling from the comfort of your home, casino-related crime does not threaten you. There’s no way someone can steal your chips or get in any sort of confrontation with you.
This, of course, doesn’t mean online casino gambling is completely secure. There are some dangers lurking around, which is why caution is advised. The good news is that it’s relatively easy to eliminate the risk – all you have to do is choose the right online casino.
Licensed gambling platforms with a great track record of payouts are the ones you should focus on. Not only do those online casinos do their business fair and square but they also do all in their power to keep your funds, as well as your private data, safe and sound.