Widow Blames Casino|for Husband’s Suicide


     WHEELING, W. Va. (CN) – A widow sued a West Virginia casino and the company that leases it its slot machines, claiming her husband’s addiction to gambling made him embezzle $7 million from his company, lose his job, drain the family’s savings and then kill himself.
     Stacy Stevens sued MTR Gaming Group dba Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack & Resort, of Chester, W. Va., and International Game Technology, on Aug. 7 in Federal Court.
     Scott Stevens shot himself on Aug. 13, 2012, his widow says in the lawsuit. His widow claims that unbeknownst to her, he “had become addicted to slot machines. In desperation, to support his addiction, he had embezzled over $7 million from the company where he was CFO. His family did not know.”
     Scott confessed after an IRS audit and was fired.
     “Scott Stevens continued the secret of where the money had gone, not telling his wife how much he had embezzled, or that he had a gambling habit that he could not control,” the complaint states.
     “After he was fired and had no source of income, he still continued to gamble, going almost daily over the next ten months to the Mountaineer Casino, where he emptied his family’s savings, 401(k) account, and children’s college funds.
     “On August 13, 2012, in a last, desperate effort to gamble, he withdrew the remainder from the 401(k) account and visited the slots. The family money was gone. Later, at a local park that he had helped develop, he called 9-1-1. When the sheriffs arrived, he pulled the trigger.”
     She adds: “Cases like this where patrons become addicted to slot machines, embezzle, face imprisonment, and commit suicide are familiar occurrences to the gambling industry.”
     She seeks punitive damages for wrongful death, negligent and intentional breach of duty of care, premises liability, defective product design, failure to warn, and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
     She is represented by James Bordas.

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