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Insider Viewpoint of Las Vegas
Welcome to Las Vegas
Frontier Justice Style -- Part 1 of 3
By: Frank Rosenthal
|I can remember that day
as if it were yesterday! The weather was perfect, the afternoon flight from
Chicago to Las Vegas was smooth and relaxing. I was on my way, prepared to
settle into a paradise for gamblers. Freedom, no more hassling with anti
gaming vice squads. You can play as much as you weigh and you don't have to
look over your shoulder. The flight attendant was a solid (9) with a
Pepsodent smile and let me know that she was staying over and had no plans
for the evening. This had to be my day.
Had I known what awaited me I would have brought along a parachute. I had
visited Las Vegas on several occasions over the years but never for more
than three to four days per trip. This was going to be a trip to remember.
Upon arrival I was met by an entourage of friends welcoming me to the city
that would provide an excellent opportunity to enhance and extend my
handicapping skills more effectively. Just like being on the floor of the
New York Stock Exchange. Minutes, sometimes seconds can be the difference
between winning and loosing. No more costly delays between Chicago and Las
Vegas via telephone. Our team was primed and ready to zero in on the Las
Vegas sports books from point blank range without fear or distraction. I
finally found the safe way to make a bet and not be concerned about the law.
Looked as though this was going to be easy as picking cherries off a tree.
Somewhere within the airport complex I noticed two signs I would never
forget. One read WELCOME TO LAS VEGAS the other read CLARK COUNTY
SHERIFF-RALPH LAMB. I would remember both.
Checked into the Tropicana Hotel Casino. Beautiful suite, fresh cut flowers,
and a tray of hot and cold appetizers compliments of the casino. All
freshened up and ready to visit friends and the top executives at Caesars
Palace. The door bell rang, probably more casino hospitality. Just lost my
first mind bet. Two plain clothes detectives from the Sheriffs Department
advised me that I'm under arrest! "Put your hands behind your back." "you're
under arrest for breaking and entering." "You got the wrong man. "I just
checked in and haven't even finished unpacking." "Don't bother, you won't be
staying very long." "How would you know." Keep your mouth shut or we will
shut it for you." I was handcuffed and marched through the casino into an
unmarked car. They even had a backup, you might think that they had just
captured John Dillinger. Up the elevator into an interrogation room for
A few moments later the well-known enforcer for the sheriffs intelligence
division entered. It was the chief of detectives, the sheriffs right hand
muscle man. Flanked by the two arresting detectives, the chief appeared to
be casually reviewing a file. I politely asked if they would be kind enough
to loosen the cuffs that were beginning to puncture my skin. They did adjust
the cuffs, one click tighter. Now I began to wonder. What's their game plan?
The chief didn't waste much time. After he put the file aside, he starred at
me and appeared to be enjoying my discomfort. I knew the chief had a
well-earned reputation for being tough and a no holds barred hombre. He was
big, muscular and known to be very loyal to the sheriff. There were rumors
that he wouldn't hesitate to plant you in the desert, and he was not your
ordinary friendly gardener. His first words were "you don't look that tough
to me." "Your right chief, I'm not, wouldn't even think about jay walking."
He didn't seem to be impressed. He snapped back quickly. "You and your
Chicago friends aren't welcome in our town." "I want you to catch the next
flight out of here and don't come back." "Is that clear Lefty?" At that
moment nothing seemed clear.
The pain was increasing, I was on his turf. I decided to remain silent.
The chief's tone and look suggested that he was annoyed as he repeated. "The
next flight, you better be on it, understand?" I foolishly said that I would
think it over considering I had just arrived. He then exchanged eye contact
with the two detectives. They walked out of the room, he came forward with
hands that looked like hams. His grip around my throat felt like a steel
vise. I was struggling, just hoping to remain conscious. I was being
strangled, and wasn't sure if or when he would let me breathe. When he
finally decided to ease up I felt reborn. No more guess work, the sheriff
and the chief were playing hardball. I thought to myself, this nut-cake is
either insane or a psychopath, maybe both. He called his two goons back.
They removed the cuffs. The chief shouted out, "book this %#@! and get him
out of here."
As I was about half way out the door he reminded me to hit the highways and
"don't come back." "If you do there's a good chance you might have an
accident far out in the desert, face down in nice big hole where you #*&%#@!
belong." I looked back at him took a deep breath choosing my words
carefully. "Okay chief I gotcha!" "I guess you can do just about anything
you want to in this town but you could be making a mistake." "If that were
to happen you an I could become closer then you think, maybe even side by
side." Maybe I should have practiced the golden rule? "Silence is golden, it
can't be repeated."
No doubt in my mind, I'm dealing with an unpredictable cop who may not be
playing with a full deck. Finger printed, photographed and strip searched. I
was on my way having been released on my own recognizance. The charges were
eventually dropped. On the way back to the Tropicana I was thinking about
the chief, the sheriff, the desert, and most importantly, their next move.
It was clear "Welcome to Las Vegas" wasn't meant for me. I'm not ready to
leave, they aren't going to back off.
Round (2) came quicker than I could have anticipated. It became a prime time
showdown, center stage right smack in the middle of Caesars Palace, and you
didn't need a reservation or a ticket. The sheriff sent his prize pit bull
who ran into a hostile hometown rodeo cowboy… To be continued in the August
Get on the right side of "LEFTY" by calling toll free 1-877-2CASINO, his
talented sports team consultants will offer you a variety of packages
containing "Lefty's" best plays on the Diamond, the Grid Iron, the Hardwood
and the Ice. Baseball, Pigskin, Basketball and Hockey from the legendary
expert on sports gambling. SPORTS ILLUSTRATED "When "Lefty" bets the betting
establishment salutes." Surfers, step right up to
www.frankleftyrosenthal.com and "Play to Win."
In the August issue of Insider Viewpoint magazine, read Part 2 of the real
story of how Clark County Sheriff Ralph Lamb welcomed Frank "Lefty"
Rosenthal to Las Vegas!