POKER

Casino heist in Washington linked to WSOP player

TAGs: james nolette, lancer lanes, try wolcoxon, world series of poker, WSOP

wsoplogocomTruth can sometimes be stranger than fiction, and for all it’s worth this is probably one of them.

Here’s the story: 27-year old Troy Wilcoxon played in a World Series of Poker tournament recently, finishing 11th out of 898 players ad pocketing a cool $5,010. Nothing unusual there, right?

Not so, apparently.

See, Wilcoxon and a friend of his, James Nolette, were recently arrested and are facing burglary, theft and money laundering charges in Asotin County Superior Court over a $25,000 casino heist in May that took place at Lancer Lanes Casino in Clarkston, Washington. Here’s where the case turns on its head: court documents have pointed to a potential connection that Wilcoxon may have used part of the stolen money to pay for his seat in the WSOP tournament where he finished in 11th place.

Clarkston police detective Richard Muszynski stopped short of confirming the connection to reporters, opting only to say that “There’s a good chance, but we don’t know for certain whether proceeds of the casino heist covered Wilcoxon’s tournament fee and eight-day stay at the Rio All-Suites Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas”.

The casino heist on Lancer Lanes reportedly occurred in the early hours of May 23. According to Muszynski, no forced entries were alleged to have happened, indicating, at least to the police, that “someone that was somewhat familiar with the business.” Shortly after the heist, investigators told The Spokesman-Review that the two suspects rented a car and headed straight to Las Vegas, presumably to play in the WOrld Series of Poker.

The investigation is still being conducted by the Clarkston Police Department and the Spokane office of the state Gambling Commission. Both Nollette and Wilcoxon have been released on bond but are expected to be in court early next week.

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