RE: Murder in the Dallas Underground

New York poker robber arraigned on murder charge this week

by , Sep 12, 2008 | 9:49 am

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.

SIGH/ADDENDUM: As much as i understand why police kinda had to start busting poker rooms, it’s sad that these robberies and related violence started only after the raids, upon games’ being driven deeper underground. These sorts of things just didn’t happen in the freewheelin’ days when poker rooms were virtually open-to-the-public.

2 Comments to “RE: Murder in the Dallas Underground

  1. Kris DeSena

    Just to let you know, the reason Delvalle was charged with ‘murder’ (actually ‘felony murder’)is because he was an active participant in the robbery/burglary that resulted in the murder of a person, in this case my husband. This is NYS law – not because of some event that occured in Texas.

  2. DanM

    Ms. DeSena,

    Certainly not trying to imply that the two cases were connected. At the time your husband’s killers were being arraigned, we had been talking about a murder in the Dallas area … the first at a poker room in many many years. (Still unsolved by police.)

    Here was the original topic:

    By no means meant no disrespect or to belittle your loss. I knew very little about it at the time, but I did take note that something also happened in New York that should not have.

    Thanks for reminding us that real people’s lives are dramatically affected by these “issues”. Please keep us posted on developments in Frank’s case.