Your Government At Work

News from the War on Crime from Lake Elsinore, California:

A volunteer waitress and a widowed great-grandmother who tends bar at the Lake Elsinore Elks Lodge are due in court later this month after pleading not guilty to misdemeanor charges of operating an illegal gambling operation.

Margaret Hamblin, 73, and 39-year-old Cari Gardner, who donates her time as a waitress at the lodge, face up to one year in jail and a $5,000 fine for allegedly running a $50 football pool at the facility, the Press-Enterprise reported.

The charges stem from a Nov. 20 investigation by state Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control agents into an anonymous tip that lodge members bet on NFL games.

Behind the bar, the armed agents found an envelope with $5 from each of the 10 members taking part in the pool. The person who came closest to guessing the combined score of the Jacksonville Jaguars and the New York Giants was to pocket the contents, according to the Press-Enterprise. “It was just regular ‘Monday Night Football,’ ” said Hamblin, who has tended bar for 40 years, six of them at the lodge. “We were sitting at the bar, and the gang wanted to do something,” she said, according to the newspaper.

Timothy Clark, who heads the department’s Riverside district, which issued the citations, said football pools “are a violation of the law, and we will take whatever we feel is appropriate action to ensure compliance by our licensees,” the newspaper reported.

Coming next week, a crackdown on that band of bingo players at St. Paul’s Roman Catholic Church.

H/T: The Agitator

  • Ryan

    Jeez… doesn’t the government have something more important to do? Maybe like fighting the War on (Some) Illegal Drugs?

  • Brad Warbiany

    No, Ryan… This is the War on (Some) Gambling. This wasn’t the CA lottery, or on an indian reservation, or at one of the many card rooms found in CA.

    It’s fine to gamble at those places. This place, though, was unlicensed. And you know that government licenses are necessary for everything in CA, don’t you?