I just had the oddest experience that I have ever had in Las Vegas. It ended in a use of force incident.
My wife and I were playing Craps at Harrah’s this morning. My wife was standing to my left. We were at the end of the table and a woman walked up to the table on my right and tried to buy in with $25 cash and a slot machine ticket worth $77. The dealer told the woman that tickets were not accepted at the tables, and directed her to the cashier’s cage that was 20 feet away. The woman left the $25 in chips on the table and headed that way.
She returned 10 minutes later, and I pointed out to her that the chips she had left behind were still there. She said “I don’t care about that, it’s chump change,” then put the chips on the field. I was the shooter and rolled a 6. Her money was taken by the dealer. She asked the dealer to place another bet, the dealer asked for money, the woman again tried to use the slot machine ticket. My wife helpfully told her that she needed to use cash. She left. After she was gone, I made a joke: “That’s what happens when you legalize pot.” The entire table laughed, dealers included.
She came back a third time, about 15 minutes later. She stood so close to me that our shoulders were touching, despite the fact that no one else was at our end of the table. I slid my chips to my left, away from her and closer to my wife. It made me nervous. The woman said, pointing to my wife,”She isn’t helping me. I should just punch her.” I told the woman that this would be a bad idea and that she needed to leave. I asked the dealer to call security. I couldn’t leave, because I had about $200 in play. The woman left, and the dealer said, “She is someone else’s problem now.”
You guessed it- she was back 5 minutes later. The stupid ass tried using the slot ticket again. She said, “I don’t have any circle things (meaning chips?) to play with, so I will just take some of his.” She then reached in and grabbed a handful of my chips with her right hand.
I grabbed the offending hand HARD and twisted towards me as I stepped to my right, into her, planting my foot behind her. At the same time, I lifted her arm and pushed. Off balance, she started to fall and I was just starting to finish the move when my wife yelled “stop.” I eased up and let the woman keep her feet. Security was there pretty quickly. They removed her from the property. As they were doing so, she insisted that security get a supervisor and “fully document” the incident. She will be lucky if they don’t have her arrested.
My wife later said she was worried that I would be the one who got in trouble. She also said that she wasn’t sure that I needed to use force. I explained that the woman had already verbally signaled her willingness to get violent and was in the act of committing robbery. What I did was a clear case of the lawful use of force in self defense.
First time I have ever had to use force in my wife’s presence.