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Thursday, November 12, 2009

Ind. Decisions - "Supreme Court Hears $125,000 Gambling Debt Case: Woman Claims Casino Knew About Addiction" [Updated]

Indy 6 News has the first story I've seen on the oral argument this morning before the Indiana Supreme Court in the case of Caesars Riverboat Casino. LLC v. Genevieve Kephart. Some quotes:

INDIANAPOLIS -- A case involving a woman who gambled and lost $125,000 at Caesars Riverboat Casino in 2006 has reached the Indiana Supreme Court.

Jenny Kephart, of Nashville, Tenn., said the casino knew she had a gambling addiction, but still lured her to the facility to take advantage of her.

Initially, Caesars sued Kephart in an effort to recover the gambling debt. Kephart countersued, and the casino filed a motion to dismiss.

The motion to dismiss was argued before the Supreme Court Thursday morning.

Kephart's attorney, Terry Noffsinger, claimed the casino went to great lengths to entice his client.

"They offered her free transportation from hundreds of miles across two states. They offered her plane rides. They offered her suites with butlers," Noffsinger said. "It's pretty amazing what they do once they know somebody's got this issue. You are so well-liked by the casinos until you are out of money."

You may watch the videocast here.

[Updated at 1:34 PM] Here is Grace Schneider's story for the Louisville Courier Journal. A quote:

A lawyer for a Tennessee woman who has accused the former Caesars Indiana of taking advantage of her gambling addiction told the Indiana Supreme Court on Thursday that Hoosier casinos shouldn’t be immune from liability for harming such customers.

When a casino intentionally targets someone who has money to burn and is a compulsive gambler, it has a responsibility to protect that person from harming herself, attorney Terry Noffsinger told five justices during a morning hearing.

“The law protects the sick, it protects the helpless,” Noffsinger said. Therefore, he said. casinos have an implied responsibility not to prey upon customers who can’t control themselves.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on November 12, 2009 12:58 PM
Posted to Ind. Sup.Ct. Decisions