TUNICA COUNTY, Miss. — A North Mississippi woman got a whole lot more than she was gambling for after she says she was attacked in a Tunica casino parking lot and robbed of her winnings.
The victim, who only feels comfortable being identified as “Sandy,” says she was robbed in the parking lot of the Hollywood Casino around 2:30 a.m. Sunday morning.
More than $500 in winnings, her phone, wallet, house and car keys were stolen.
“I was holding it with my hand and he come to grab it from me, and he was just grinning at me,” she said through tears.
Sandy says it all started when she was playing slots inside the nearby Resorts Casino. That’s where she initially saw her attacker.
She thought something was off — the guy was just standing around, not playing anything. She eventually cashed out and said she didn’t see anyone around.
But as she headed out of the Resorts parking lot, she heard footsteps behind her. She turned around and saw the same man.
Sandy thinks she startled him. She quickly got in her car, he got in his.
She drove to the Hollywood parking lot next door and waited until she thought he was gone before getting out of her car.
As she was walking into the Hollywood Casino, she says he came out of nowhere and grabbed her purse.
She chased him but he was able to drive away.
Sandy believes there should’ve been more security in the casino parking lots.
“I’m always cautious because I go late at night. I’m not stupid, I pay attention to my surroundings, I got out, I always look around,” she said.
Eric Schippers, senior vice president of public affairs for Penn National Gaming, the parent company for Hollywood and Resorts, sent this response:
“The safety and security of our guests is always our paramount concern and we have a robust security infrastructure in place to help prevent these types of incidents. As this is an ongoing law enforcement matter, we are referring all media calls to the local Sheriff’s Department, and while we are cooperating fully with their investigation, we cannot offer any additional details at this time.”
The Tunica County Sheriff’s Office released a photo Tuesday of a man they call a person of interest in the case. Sandy told authorities the man got away in a red four-door vehicle with a Tennessee tag that began with OEB.
Neither the casino nor the Tunica County Sheriff’s Office has released any video, but Sandy said she is sure he was caught on video. She said she hopes the sheriff’s office will release it soon so he can be identified.