SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) – Missouri Highway Patrol investigators have removed 35 slot machines from a Springfield business they believe are illegal.
On the outside, it may appear like a normal business. Businesses near Lucky Lynn’s have been frustrated with the services they say the company provides.
Brigitte Goade, co-owner of STS Outdoors, thinks it’s obvious.
“It’s gambling, they sell phone cards just so they can play,” Goade said.
On Monday, state soldiers issued a search warrant, confiscating the 35 arcade-style slot machines, which Sgt. Mike McClure says not to be confused with real computers.
“Our job is to bring people into compliance and in this case, not necessarily the enforcement, is to educate people about the illegality of these machines,” said Sgt. McClure.
Several business owners at the Plaza Mall said a portion of the cafe’s customer base has harmed their own stores.
“If someone who is doing drugs is in my driveway, it will prevent customers from coming through my door,” Goade said.
Goade says the problem has continued to grow and is visible.
“We find a lot of drug needles, paraphernalia,” Goade said. “For some, they tried to come up with solutions their own way,” Goade said.
Ricardo Ramirez is the manager of Avanzare, a nearby Italian restaurant. He says that since the opening of Lucky Lynns, customers “no longer feel safe.”
Avanzare has placed barriers to try to deter unwanted traffic from his business.
“People have stopped coming late now, just because of that,” Ramirez said. “I feel it affected our business a bit, but I think our customers are loyal to us and always come.”
While this week’s raid is encouraging, some are concerned not only for their business, but for their own well-being as well.
“We’re trying to do what we can to protect ourselves, and that’s all we can do,” Goade said.
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