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Owner of Mingo Trading Company charged

By LESLIE GRAY Logan Daily News Reporter
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LOGAN — The owner of Mingo Trading Company of Logan has been charged in relation to a search warrant conducted at the business Dec. 11.

Marshal W. Lucas of Logan was charged with four counts of complicity to skill-based amusement machine prohibited conduct, first-degree misdemeanors, from alleged incidences on Nov. 9 and Dec. 9. An arraignment date has been set for Jan. 5 in Hocking County Municipal Court.

The Logan Police Department received a complaint the business was giving cash payouts for games of skill machines. “In Hocking County, we don’t see these type of gaming offenses,” Police Chief Aaron Miller said. “I think there are some skill games in the county, but we have not received any complaints about their proprietors providing cash winnings for playing games.”

The LPD contacted the Ohio Attorney General’s Office, which is the chief law enforcement office of the state. Undercover agents from the office investigated the claims and on two occasions, Nov. 9 and Dec. 9, were given winnings with cash, Miller said.

“Once winnings were obtained, the agents received cash for winnings, and state law says cash is prohibited,” Miller added.

The information obtained from the attorney general’s office was presented to Hocking County Municipal Court, which granted a search warrant for the business.

Three skilled gaming machines were confiscated. The court will determine what should be done with the machines.

In previous correspondence, Lucas told The Logan Daily he believed the machines complied with state law and was upset by the way the search warrant was conducted at his business. “I feel like I’m being tried by public opinion,” he said. “They made this into a public event.” Lucas said several police cars were there, and when he arrived, his employees were handcuffed. Miller said three police cruisers were sent to conduct the search, and it is not uncommon to handcuff those present until identities can be established.

Lucas, who also goes by the name Dancing Elk, said he also feels he is being singled out because he is Native American. “There are other machines in the area. Some of the prominent business people have these machines. Why are they singling me out?” he said. “There has been harassment of my business for two years.” Mingo Trading Company on Main Street sells a variety of Native American items.

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