Alberta Man Suing Gaming Commission over $10K Jackpot

On Monday, October 6, a Medicine Hat gambler claims to have hit the jackpot not once, but twice. The casino denies this claim, but the incident raises questions about the reliability of land based electronic gaming machines.

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The individual, Peter Cummins, claims to have hit a $10,000 jackpot at one of Casino by Vanshaw’s Video Lottery Terminals (VLTs) last Monday. Cummins reports that he was paid out for his win, and then continued to use the same VLT. He told Medicine Hat News that “I hit the button [again] and be darned I didn’t get the quick picks again for another $10,000” jackpot. Cummins says the casino never paid out the second win.

According to Casino by Vanshaw, Cummins’s story is highly improbable. Casino manager Kevin VanDerKooy told Medicine Hat News that every VLT freezes after a win until a casino attendant is able to get to the VLT in question, verify the win, and reset the machine. VanDerKooy suggested that the machine had not yet been reset and that Cummins must have thought that he hit the button and got a second win.

The Casino is planning a full review of the incident in question. While “there is absolutely no indication he won two jackpots,” VanDerKooy told the newspaper, “Casino by Vanshaw [would never] not pay someone a jackpot.” So, if a review of video surveillance footage and an examination of the VLT’s gaming history does reveal that Cummins did get lucky twice, then the casino will pay out a second jackpot.

Cummins is looking to the Alberta Lottery and Gaming Commission to settle the matter. While Cummins obviously has a financial stake in this issue, the larger concern is the reliability of the video lottery terminals used by Casino by Vanshaw. Hopefully, the truth will come to light in this manner, and gamers will be able to trust that VLTs in any casino are reliable.