CIRCLEVILLE - The owner of Spinners on U.S. Route 23 pleaded not guilty to the charge of operating a gambling house Wednesday in Pickaway County Common Pleas Court.
Stephen S. Cline, 69, was indicted on the charge June 5 by the Pickaway County Grand Jury. A pretrial hearing is set for July 17.
The charge came after cash, documents and 143 gaming machines were seized from the business April 3 in the investigation of an illegal casino operation by the Ohio Casino Control Commission, the Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI), the Pickaway County Sheriff's Office and the Pickaway County Prosecutor's office.
Search warrants were executed the same day at Cline's residence at 14270 Walnut Creek Pike, Ashville.
According to Sheriff Robert Radcliff, investigators removed two and a half semi trailers full of slot machines from the business and at least a pickup truck full of documents and other items from Cline's home.
He said the investigation began just before the first of the year when investigators started receiving complaints about cash payments being made from slot machines at the business. Such payments are only permitted at Ohio's four land-based casinos.
Radcliff said a total of 38 officers from the three law enforcement agencies were involved in the April operation between the two locations.