Ameristar Casino Visitors Attacked in Suspected Hate Crime
Two men were attacked at the Ameristar Casino Resort Spa St. Charles last weekend with authorities believing the event was a hate crime.
When visiting a casino, most people feel safe. Gambling venues take great care in providing a secure environment, from a security team to cameras and even sometimes, a police presence. Casinos can be subject to crime from time to time due to the large amounts of money located on-site. However, for the most part, patrons feel safe. But that is not always the case. It has been reported many times of players being robbed or attacked after a big win. Just last weekend, two men were attacked at the Ameristar Casino Resort Spa St. Charles in Missouri and suffered from serious injuries. It is suspected that the men were harmed due to a hate crime.
Attacked and Beaten
The two men were leaving the casino when they were attacked. Those who took part in the incident were allegedly yelling anti-gay slurs at the two men. the victims were punched and picked and were in need of treatment at the hospital once the event was over.
The victims asked the assailants to stop, but they continued their attack. One man was injured so severely that his eye socket and nose was fractured. He will need to have surgery to correct the injury. The other man was unconscious after the attack and lost several teeth in the process.
Early Saturday is when the attacked happened and the two men were not alone, as they were with family and friends. One of the men had drank too much while at the casino and was taken to his car by the second man.
The attack took place in the parking garage as the men were trying to leave. Two men attacked the victims after a third man heading into the casino reportedly taunted them and acted like he was going to hit them.
One victim told reporters that he was begging them to stop but they just kept on hitting him.
Was It a Hate Crime?
Police in St. Charles along with the prosecutor’s office of the area are investigating the incident. Police have not classified the attack as a hate crime as of yet, but it is being considered. Lt. Tom Wilkison told reporters that right now, there is not enough to support that the two men were targeted due to the sexual orientation.
However, one of the victims says that he feels they were attacked because he had his arms around the drunk man, trying to get him to his car.
If the assailants are convicted of the incident as a hate crime, the number of years in prison would increase. Instead of four years, the men would face seven years. The security footage of the casino has been reviewed and it does show the attack. Unfortunately, it does not include any audio.
The attack now has the victims questioning whether or not the casino or other casinos are safe. The victim told news reporters that he doesn’t understand how he can go anywhere and feel safe if they were attacked at a venue like the Ameristar, which has security in place.
Ameristar has spoken out about the incident, stating that the safety and security of their guests is of the utmost importance. The property has robust surveillance and security measures in place throughout the facility. There is a zero-tolerance policy against those who commit an act of violence and the casino is working closely with law enforcement on the investigation.
It seems that players might need to be just a little cautious when leaving a casino and be aware of the surroundings. While it may be a shame to have to say it, there are evil people in the world and being away of what and who is around you can help you to stay safe.