Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Enforcement Seizes Illegal Gambling Device in Wilmington Gas Station


Suspect and Charge Information:
Jonathan Kidane, 28, Wilmington, DE

Possession of a Gambling Device

Released for future court appearance

Location: BP Gas Station, 201 S. Heald Street, Wilmington, DE

Date of Arrest: Friday, March 22, 2013

A 28-year-old Wilmington man was charged in connection with the operation of an illegal gambling device at a Wilmington gas station.

The Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Enforcement (DATE) had received information regarding the operation of an illegal gambling machine inside the BP Gas Station on Heald Street.

When DATE Agents responded to the location, they discovered that the machine was identical in design to other machines recently seized in New Castle County by the DATE and the Division of Gaming Enforcement.

Players insert quarters into the machines causing a push bar to move forward forcing quarters off the raised ledge into a winner’s drop box. These machines are also equipped with additional ledges, not visible to the player, that illegally collect a portion of player’s winnings to be shared with machine vendor.

These additional ledges decrease the odds of winning money. Higher denomination dollar bills are often found lying on top of the quarters to entice someone to play.

DATE obtained a search warrant for this location and with the assistance of DGE and Wilmington Police, entered this location on March 22nd.

The machine was seized along with approximately $188 in cash.

The owner of the business, Jonathan Kidane, was charged with Possession of a Gambling Device and released pending a future court appearance.