Posts Tagged ‘Dallas-poker-rooms’

June 15, 2010

Double Homicide at Dallas-Area Poker Game

Details are sparse … but a suburban Dallas poker game erupted in gunfire last night, resulting in two people dead — an attempted robber and a player trying to stop him.

According to Fox 4 and Mesquite police, Tracey Moore, 35, apparently the game’s host, was shot and killed while scuffling with the armed intruder at an apartment in the 5900 block of Northwest Dr, shortly after midnight yesterday.

Another player, Jerome Johnson, 34, carrying a licensed concealed handgun, shot back, killing the suspect, too. Police have not yet released the alleged robber’s identity. And though they say it appears to be a case of self-defense, a grand jury will decide whether or not Johnson will face any charges.

Posted by at 8:08 pm

October 28, 2009

Poker Homicide Updates

McDaniel.

Bosch.

James McDaniel gets sentenced today. McDaniel, of course, is the smooth-talking, purple-suit-wearing rogue Dallas underground-poker-room-operator/drug-dealer convicted in June for contributing to the overdose death of SMU coed Meaghan Bosch. Good money says he will go to prison for the rest of his life … as he was already on parole after serving 20 years for the murder of a former Dallas cop before he got into the underground poker scene. Jurors in the Bosch case were not told his past murder conviction, nor were they allowed to consider allegations from up to a dozen young women claiming they were drugged and raped inside his poker room, some of them apparently on video.

UPDATE: McDaniel did indeed get life. He is currently in custody at Seagoville’s federal prison, but will likely be sent to a less comfortable state prison to finish out his old murder sentence before being sent back to Seagoville for his time on Bosch’s death.


* * * * *

Oscarsson.

Meanwhile, Swedish police are still looking for clues around Europe in the murder of PokerListings founder Andreas Oscarsson. They’ve concluded that indeed his killing was carefully planned by a professional hitman — with his family home fully staked out, exits noted, etc. … allowing the killer to break into the house and fire six silenced shots into Oscarsson and then leave without waking his six family members also asleep in the house that night. And while no motive has been disclosed, apparently investigators have unearthed at least a few death threats against him. and possibly have ruled out some Latvians.

Click here and here for Google translations of the latest from Hungarian news reports.

* * * * *

Dean.

Urch.

And Daniel Dean will get a new trial in the death of fellow amateur poker player Mark Urch. The two players were involved in a drunken dispute over hands in an Australian amateur pub tourney, and when they took matters outside, Dean leveled Urch with a single punch to the head, a blow that caused his death a couple days later. Australian courts sentenced Dean to seven years for manslaughter (eligible for release in May 2011). However, an appeals court threw out the conviction last month and ordered a retrial, on the grounds that the judge may have misinformed the jury about provocation and self-defense matters of law.

There’s a Daniel Dean support group on Facebook.

Posted by at 9:50 am

May 11, 2009

James McDaniel Poker-Homicide Case Delayed

Cop-killer-turned-Dallas-underground-game-operator (and alleged Choctaw colluder) James McDaniel’s trial in the death of 21-year-old SMU coed Meaghan Bosch is supposed to get underway this week, but has been temporarily delayed. In an effort to put one of the more, er … colorful characters from the Dallas poker scene behind bars for life, prosecutors will make the case that underground poker in Dallas (circa 2006-07) was a breeding ground for drug crimes, rape, and ultimately … an unfortunate, untimely death.

Update from the Morning News:

Monday’s trial of the ex-con accused of causing the overdose death of Southern Methodist University student Meaghan Bosch has been postponed, the judge ordered Thursday.

James McDaniel’s defense attorney, Thomas Mills Jr., is ill, according to court documents. No new date has been set. McDaniel faces up to life in prison if convicted of charges that he supplied Bosch, 21, of McKinney, with drugs that caused her death. She was found dead May 14, 2007, in a portable toilet at a construction site near Waco. Her death followed two other fatal overdoses of SMU students, prompting criticism that the university was ignoring a severe drug problem.

Prosecutors say that McDaniel drugged and raped other female SMU students who attended his underground poker games near campus and that they plan to call some of them to testify. McDaniel also supplied students with drugs, prosecutors allege.

McDaniel, a convicted murderer and self-described professional poker player, has denied he caused Bosch’s death. He also denies selling drugs or committing sexual assaults.

Posted by at 12:08 pm

December 23, 2008

Another Dallas Poker Room Robbed

Details are sketchy here in Las Vegas, but apparently it took place Friday night near TI (Texas Instruments) headquarters on the city-limit outskirts of northeast Dallas … Ironically enough, according to what we’re hearing, this longtime-running, near-legendary game had moved to another location nearby but recently relocated again, going solo when the partner venue wouldn’t pony up for security.

This robbery does not appear to be the work of the homicidally notorious Dallas Poker Bandits, unless they drastically changed their MO. The unconfirmed word spreading around D-town is that a dealer had stepped outside to smoke some pot, and when one of the owners went looking for him (good help is hard to find), a couple black males jumped out (of some bushes?) and began “throwing down” … the owner ran off … and as two or three others came out of the poker room to investigate what was going on, they too were robbed, at which point the assailants took off on foot.

Though Pokerati hasn’t yet talked with police for an official report, the cops were supposedly all over it with multiple patrol cars and a helicopter.

No specifics, btw, on the robber’s (or robbers’) weaponry.

Posted by at 4:42 am

October 19, 2008

Dallas Poker Bandits/Killers Still a Danger?

Reports of Armed Robbery in Cedar Hill

I was just doing a little research earlier today on the status of the unsolved Arlington, TX, poker homicide. While I hadn’t come across anything new yet regarding pursuit of the killer(s), I had been hearing that all was calm and comfortable in the D-town underground. I was supposing this only made sense — as surely the poker bandits had learned the guy they shot died (sorry, I’m still working on getting the victim’s actual name) … and the one silver lining if you could find one in death is that it probably meant an end to their reign of poker havoc.

It had to just be too risky, robbing poker games in Dallas now … with a potential murder charge should they get caught. After all, the DPD has a pretty good idea who the gun-toting, ski-mask donning poker thugs are … rooms have been getting hit in similar fashions for about a year-and-a-half … or at least a short-list of primary suspects. And while that’s no guarantee that the string of robberies in Dallas is connected to the homicide at an Arlington apartment game … shit, even Pokerati knows of more similarities than just “two black guys” that would at least merit a look by law enforcement.

Or so I thought … From a Patrick the Pokerati commenter:

dan,

you hear about the same robbery bandits strike again. This time in an asian home game in Cedar Hill. Gated $500K homes community. Very bold. Same MO tall black and short black… guns.. police arrived just 2 mins too late…

Sigh … I had not heard about this, but now I have.

Not sure what to make of this — reliable sources, please feel free to share any info …

More…

Posted by at 10:29 pm

September 12, 2008

RE: Murder in the Dallas Underground

New York poker robber arraigned on murder charge this week

If the New York justice system is anything like Texas’ (er …), we can expect it to take about a year before the people responsible for the killing of a low-stakes (but high-action) poker player in Arlington. Just this week, New York courts officially charged William Delvalle with the murder of Frank DeSena, who you may recall was the recreational poker player killed last November in the robbery of an underground poker club in midtown Manhattan.

Interesting to note that the courts aren’t even claiming Delvalle pulled the trigger — and yet he still faces life in prison for being the leader of the robbery/homicide. Interesting to me because the poker robbers in Dallas likewise face a similar fate. Sure, laws are different, state-to-state … but not by that much. And without a doubt, though no arrests have been made in any Dallas poker robberies and there’s no certain connection between the latest in Arlington and others around the DFW area that were very similar … poker players in Dallas have a pretty good idea about the identities of at least a few people who have may or may not have donned ski masks and wielded weapons to rape a poker room. (And no, I’m not taking about the police SWAT teams who have done that recently, too — that’s a different story altogether.)

When the Ashton got robbed, I was a little dismissive of the finger-pointing (it was a bad time to be a black Dallas rounder). But now, four or five robberies later — +1 dropped cellphone, +recurring player presences, +1 dead — the reality in this sub-subculture is becoming clearer. Not to mention that police have had their own inside players in games since at least 2006 … we know this for a fact, and even who some of those guys are, but probably not all … but regardless, point being that whether it’s a year from now or not, it’s only a matter of time before we see the poker crooks and the law come to showdown.

More…

Posted by at 9:49 am

September 9, 2008

Murder in the Dallas Underground?

Attempted robbery in Arlington went awry; shots fired, one killed

Two masked men showed up at a poker game in a South Arlington apartment complex a week or so ago … they knocked on the door, one player got up to answer, and upon realizing that the game was about to be robbed, he struggled to shut the door. Commotion ensued as it became an inverse tug-of-war to see whether the robbers would be getting in or the poker players would be able to keep them out. After a few seconds of scuffle, shots rang out — eight, maybe 10 — at which point players and the dealer fled in the other direction, out a back door, jumping off the balcony. (Not sure if it was from the second or third floor — but three of them suffered minor injuries as a result.)

The player who originally got up from the table to answer the knock (“John” is all I know of his name right now) got hit by at least three bullets … one in the shoulder, one in the leg, and one somewhere else … and he died last night from blood-related complications to his wounds.

More…

Posted by at 6:46 pm

August 7, 2008

RE: Dallas’ Biggest Little Game

More on North Texas poker robbery (not to be confused with South Texas poker raid)

Can someone give me confirmation that this game is done, as in out of commission? I gotta think it has to be with the TV cameras and everything on it. But you know … we have standards here, and don’t want to name it and/or give out specifics about the general vicinity until we know a little bit more.

UPDATE: Huh, wow … we are not going to name the game (yet) … because right, why would a regular Veterans club shut down after a robbery, right? Everything’s normal … nothing to see here. (And on a serious side, I may sound semi-mocking, but I haven’t forgotten that some of the people who work there are friends of mine whose livelihoods may or may not be in jeopardy.

An eye-witness guy who sat next to an eye-witness the next day put up his full report on Weston Poker. Am starting to think these aren’t the same Dallas Poker Bandits that robbed the Ashton, and then presumably The Office … but they do seem like the same guys who attempted to rob this room and failed (at least) once before. What went down late-late in the Wednesday a.m., shortly before sunrise, according to one second-hand source:

More…

Posted by at 8:45 am

My Poker Gun-dar Is Buzzing

Confirmed: Dallas’ biggest little game gets capped

Was there a poker robbery in Dallas last night — or perhaps talk around some tables about an old one?

Not trying to start anything, rumor or otherwise … I just happened to notice a few visitors coming to us via Google searches overnight for “dallas poker robbery”. Not to give my secrets away, but monitoring Google traffic isn’t too different from the way night-shift journos used to listen to police radios back in the newspaper day … and when I’ve noticed a quick surge in such searches before (or more commonly, “dallas poker room raided”) it usually meant something was up. But other than this “hunch” I’ve got nothing.

UPDATE: Yep … VFW hall that screams poker room was popped last night:
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/26065611

VIDEO: http://video.nbc5i.com/player/?id=283511

UPDATE: Oh, dude, I recognize exactly where this is! One of the best and biggest games kinda-sorta but not really in Dallas. Have played there a handful of times, and always enjoyed the action. Interestingly enough, both cops and robbers have been here before. This was the place where the guys who just might be the Dallas Poker Bandits got their start …

More…

Posted by at 5:39 am

July 24, 2008

AP and UB Merge to Form Criminally Questionable Supersite

Bodog loses position as industry badboy

Ah, it reminds me of the good-ole-days of the Dallas underground … when a bunch of rooms got ruffled every so often you’d see the merger of a few “bad guys’” games and would be kinda surprised but not really.

With an investigatory explanation due out in a few days, Absolute Poker and Ultimate Bet are merging to form a new site — now the third largest in the world — called “Cereus” — the name for a desert cactus that stands strong and stays prickly in even the harshest environments. A related species is the Cereus uruguayanus, which may or may not lend credence to Oliver’s prediction that very soon the WSOP will move to Montevideo we could see the WSOP in Punta del Este.

The name could also have been inspired by the night-blooming variety:

One of the strangest plants of the desert, the Night-bloomiing Cereus is a member of the Cactus Family that resembles nothing more than a dead bush most of the year. It is rarely seen in the wild because of its inconspicuousness. But for one midsummer’s night each year, its exquisitely scented flower opens as night falls, then closes forever with the first rays of the morning sun.

Aww, so sad, and yet so precious and sweet …

Another operation with a claim to the Cereus name is Bacillus Cereus:

an endemic, soil-dwelling, Gram-positive, rod-shaped, beta hemolytic bacteria that … is known to create heavy nausea, vomiting, and abdominal periods.

Supposedly, according to the first link in this post, this site is gonna be great — it’s the result of all sorts of innovative technology and customer service. The announcement says nothing about it being all cleaned up with the best security out there — and from a PR perspective can you blame them? — even though theoretically this company should have more knowledge than anyone else about how a site’s integrity can be compromised.

Posted by at 5:45 pm

June 10, 2008

Programmer reveals his secrets …

Rise of the (Real) Poker Bots

Artificial opponents emerge from Dallas underground, collude online

A declared working poker bot operation in Dallas, TX, and on PokerStars.

A fascinating (if not challenging) story that you can only presume would be of great interest to anyone in the online poker-room security biz, or anyone who wants to philosophize on the meaning of “good for poker”:

How I Built a Working Online Poker Bot, Part 3: The Million Dollar Pet Project

The programmer in question draws inspiration from Big Blue, the IBM supercomputer that challenged chess champ Gary Kasparov. And thus, at any given time online, here’s what you’re potentially up against:

click to enlarge

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

Posted by at 3:14 pm

May 26, 2008

RE: Another Dallas Area Poker Raid

Here’s more info on the raid of the “40 Deuce” club in Hurst. It was indeed another undercover narcotics investigation followed by a paramilitary SWAT-team incursion:

Hurst police said they found two dozen people inside the home, which had tables, dealers and even a banker, and was set up to look like Las Vegas.

You know, Pokerati used to defend the police for just doing their jobs, and reminding poker players of that. But c’mon … SWAT teams? That’s so 2006. When you want to shut down a game next time … here’s a hint … try just knocking on the door(s). I know I know … I’m just a blogger and don’t understand police operations — so maybe you can explain to me how, using knowledge gained from your undercover, a knock on the door combined with a marked squad car in the driveway wouldn’t stop any poker crimes from being committed.

In fact, I’ll even give you the answer to this question: “Uh, duh, Mr. Know-it-All, because then there would be no money to confiscate for us to put toward other poker raids/the police “petty cash” fund.”

And while we’re bitchin’ about the money … yo local news media … when “dozens” of players gather with a sum total of a few thousand dollars … since you’re not going to really follow the money to look into what police are really up to with it, at least do the math and realize that this is not “high stakes.” You should be journalistically ashamed of yourselves for being so careless/sensational with your word choice.

For the rest of you, check out the comments on the Channel 5 story. At the time of this posting, they’re running 11-1 in favor of poker and against the police:

More…

Posted by at 1:01 am

May 25, 2008

Another Dallas Area Poker Raid

Does Media Attention = Enforcement Action?

A poker room in Hurst (a suburb between Dallas and Fort Worth) got raided Thursday or Friday night. I have few details — perhaps some Pokeratizens can fill us in on the game action, weapons in play, arrests made, etc.? — but according to my source:

Channel 4 said it was a gambling club.
Channel 5 said it was a poker club.

Hmm, makes me wonder if ItsOverJonny may have been right when he suggested that a little extra poker ink tweaks the coppers into action. Not saying that Pokerati or a forthcoming poker documentary is to blame (the doc, after all, wouldn’t be coming out for a long while, and Pokerati generally prefers to pass on responsibility) … but there was apparently a big to-do in Dallas (again) over turning Reunion Arena into a casino … and boom, a few days later, perhaps coincidentally, perhaps not, somebody in some police force decided they didn’t want to look like they were turning a blind eye to “gambling.”

BTW, The Dallas Morning News poll results to the question:

Would you support a casino in downtown Dallas?

So far …

85 percent yes
15 percent no

Posted by at 2:55 am

May 15, 2008

Re: Dallas (Underground) Poker on Film

Danielle in New York writes in with a little more info about the film project they’ve got working:

Another thing you can add if people are being hesitant to being interviewed or showing us their room, we have filmed in underground poker rooms in NYC. I don’t know how familiar you are with the scene in NY but a couple years ago a big bust broke up a lot of the more well known poker rooms in the city. About 6 months before these busts we were able to film in one of the clubs and interview the owner. Unfortunately since the big bust, its been hard to come by more games in the NYC Area.

One angle I’d love to take while in Dallas, it to interview someone who could talk about all the raids either as someone who was at one of the raids or someone who ran a room that got raided. Of course, if there is an issue of not given out the name of a room or the name of the person we are interviewing, we will abide in any way possible to make everyone comfortable.

I’m not sure how much I got into the extensiveness of our project but our goal is to make the most definitive and comprehensive film about poker in America. We’ve gone everywhere from Vegas to New Orleans to Saratoga Springs to Oklahoma. We’ve interviewed people within the poker community including Annie Duke, Jeffrey Pollack (Commissioner of the WSOP), Phil Hellmuth, Steve Lipscomb (CEO of WPT), Greg Raymer, Chris Moneymaker, amateur poker players, tournament directors, and poker room mangers from casinos across the US.

So there you have it … I wonder if the poker-room people they end up talking to will be “good” or “bad” gamerunners representing the Dallas scene.

Posted by at 12:51 pm

May 14, 2008

Dallas (Underground) Poker on Film?

There’s a legitimate New York film-making outfit working on a documentary about the history of poker … and next week they’ll be in Dallas. Naturally, because it has such a relevant role, they want to talk about the Dallas underground — and they’re asking me for contact info for people to talk to, games to see, etc.

I’ve talked with a lot of you before about doing something similar with local news crews — but perhaps not shockingly, ever since the first newscaster to sneak a hidden camera into the Dallas underground ended up getting engaged to the (already married) Chief of Dallas police around the same time her station got a sweeps-week exclusive showing SWAT teams busting up three games simultaneously, most of the “good guys” in the Dallas poker scene have been a little shy about opening their doors to the media … even with assurances that no one would give up any identifying info.

(Ahh, remember the good-ole-days when Stagecoach used to openly run its ballin’ website and pay little-ole poker websites for ads the Observer couldn’t run?)

Anyhow, so this outfit, 4th Row Films, is offering the same guarantees that they will protect identities and locations. Personally I think it would be a shame for this part of poker not to be seen. But I respect the fact people who run these games generally do so to support their gambling addictions families … so I’m not giving out any phone numbers or email addresses without any special OKs. I have, however, suggested they simply drive around to area strip malls looking for the telltale white, wireless doorbells — but that doesn’t seem to be giving them confidence as they fly their people and equipment to town. So if you happen to run a game in Dallas and would like your room to live on long after you die/get arrested and have to plea bargain down your misdemeanor … send me an email and I’ll be happy to put you in touch with the right people.

Posted by at 5:00 pm