Thursday, February 08, 2007

WRTV Covers Sen. Howard's Defense Of Illegal Gambling

While others in the mainstream media have chosen to ignore or make light of last weekend's bust of a west side pea shake house, WRTV's Jack Rinehart is laying the cards on the table face up for people to see. Rinehart's report focuses on how Sen. Glenn Howard (D-Indianapolis) showed up during the raid to express his support to police for the illegal gambling operation. Rinehart reports:

A state senator tried to persuade officers to ignore an illegal gambling operation as they raided it last week, Indianapolis police said.

Police said state Sen. Glenn Howard went to the site -- 1410 Roache St., a home that investigators said was hosting "pea shake" games -- during the raid Friday night and talked to the officers.

According to a police report, Howard said, "I know it's illegal, but they don't hurt anybody."

Police said they found illegal gambling equipment in the home. During the raid, they arrested Lance Howard, 46, on suspicion of illegal gambling.

Glenn Howard, who said he is not related to Lance Howard, told 6News'Jack Rinehart that he supports those involved in pea-shake games.

"I said if they stay in the community and give back to the community, I will stand up for them. That's exactly what I've been doing," the senator said.

Glenn Howard, D-Indianapolis, intervened on behalf of another pea-shake operation two years ago, upset that police were stopping people who were leaving the premises, Rinehart reported. The senator told Rinehart that he had no financial interest in the games, and that he doesn't play.

"I don't even know how to play," Glenn Howard said.

The Marion County prosecutor's office is trying to determine whether to file charges against Lance Howard in connection with Friday's arrest, Rinehart reported.

Some people who live in the neighborhood of the raided home told 6News that the gambling attracts gun crime, trash, traffic and loud noise.

"We're trying to revitalize this neighborhood," said one resident whom 6News didn't identify, "and we can't do that as long as these illegal houses are allowed to be here."

WRTV video footage shows sophisticated surveillance cameras on the outside of the pea shake house. The man arrested, Lance Howard, has more than a dozen prior gambling-related arrests according to Rinehart. He was found with three guns and $5,000 tied to his ankles when police raided the house. Sen. Howard tells Rinehart he is not related to Lance Howard and has no financial interest in the illegal gambling operation. Rinehart also notes this isn't the first time Sen. Howard has intervened on behalf of the illegal gambling operators. He did the same thing during a similar arrest a couple of years ago.

Sadly, Rinehart reports the pea shake house is still in operation even after last weekend's raid. And to think Mayor Peterson told Abdul Hakim-Shabazz during a radio interview yesterday morning he was serious about enforcing laws against illegal gambling. Give me a break. If Peterson gave a damn, these places would be closed down today. He wasted several hundred thousands of taxpayer dollars trying to enforce an unconstitutional ordinance targeting violent video games, which he thinks has something to do with juvenile crime, but he does nothing about crime taking place in open view.


Wilson46201 said...

It should be noted that Democratic Senator Glenn Howard courageously voted against SJR7 (the Anti-Marriage Amendment) last time around and is likely to do so again this session.

Anonymous said...

Why.....why should that be noted? What does that have anything to do with this situation. What does Senator Howard's stance on a marriage amendment have any relevance with the fact that he supports illegal gaming?

Anonymous said...

Anon - ignore the dumpster diver.

You know, as long as people like that idiot Howard, Carson, Drummer, Gray...continue to represent this city, Indy will be thought of a second class city.

Anonymous said...

Well, Wilson, he's supported gay issues for a long time, and he has been appropriately thanked for that. Done and done. Over. Try something a little more original, Wilson...

Glenn Howard's problem is that he has not, for at least two or three decades, worked at a real job, drawn a real paycheck, and had to survive in the real world. IPL had, or has, a cushy job for him to which he rarely reported.

Just like the Pacer athletes, once you play in this arena this long, under a certain set of rules, you begin to think it's common, and acceptable, to behave this way.

What if I think that prostitution is no more than "providing a necessary service," and thus should be tolerated by law enforcement? Under the same set of Howard rules, all houses of ill repute should be allowed to flourish as long as they contribute back to the community. It's nuts.

The Mayor must stand loudly and clearly against this activity now. However, in his defense, he no longer controls the police. He's not been afraid to use the bully pulpit for better (charter?) schools, video game violence and other issues over which he has little or no control.

This issue demands his attention for one reason: it's killing neighborhoods. And he is Lord High Mayor of our neighborhoods.

Also known by many, but previously unmentioned here: Sen. Howard will not preside over any Mensa meetings anytime soon. He has been a willing stooge for many unusual public policy intiatives over the years, first on the Council, then in the legislature. And he doesn't even know it. As long as he gets paid, that seems to be enough.

Wilson46201 said...

In 2004 the Republicans couldn't scrounge up anybody at all to run against Senator Glenn Howard - even a well-experienced loser like Jocelyn Tandy wouldnt be that sacrificial lamb !

Anonymous said...

Strike two on Wilson. Another irrelevant "point."

Anonymous said...

The reason Wilson makes irrelevant points is because that is all he can do. His logic is terribly flawed, his viewpoints go off in tangents unrelated to the subject at hand and all of his arguments always end up back at the same two points of origin, race and sexual orientation.

Anonymous said...

Well, even a blind pig can find a truffel once in awhile.

Wilson isn't all bad. His passion and conviction are admirable.

But nobody in the African American community asked him to come to their defense at the drop of a hat. He does so willingly and often. It's gratuitous and insane. And most A-A's I know agree.

When the issue cannot be sanely debated, he pulls the race card every time.

Some stars shine brightly for a few moments, and burn out. Some burn nicely for eons.

Wilson burned out long, long ago. And most folk know it.

Anonymous said...

Desparate people do desparate things. Wilson is known for ignoring the corruption within his political party. He vigously supports the individuals breaking the laws. His passion sucks and leaves him misguided towards dead in issues. Corruption is contagious.

Anonymous said...

BTW-- the 2nd reading of SJR7 just finished with an interesting twist-- seems all the Dems preferred changing the amendment by stripping out line b. Was voted down along party lines...33-17 (division of the house). Sens. Broden, Bowser and Lanane made valiant efforts to educate and get the change accepted.

The juggernaut is headed to 3rd Reading probably on Mon/Tues.. just in time for Valentines Day-- such a sweet smack in the face to all UNMARRIED couples...

Heaven forbid we'd slow this down-- right Mitch?

Anonymous said...

You guys have beat Wilson up so badly that I feel a little guilty...NOT.

Howard does nothing but indorse crime within the city by supporting these pea shake houses.
I for one would like to see the drugs and prostitution diminish. These parlors do nothing but encourage this criminal lifestyle and Howards the chief spokesperson.
Wilson, Howard is an idiot and so are you.

Anonymous said...

What did Sen. Howard do with his Super Bowl tickets?

Anonymous said...

I wonder if anyone has considered that millions of dollars from illicit gambling must be laundered and funneled through COMPLICIT finance institutions? And that this size of operation needs protection from prosecution at high levels in police and local government?

This story is the tip of a very large iceberg.

It should also be noted that banks like Bank of America have recently been charged with providing accounts for large sums of laundered money. $1 in the bank equals about $10 in loan potential. That's a lot of profit. How much would a bank profit per year if they could park $30 million?

State Senators show up to keep the police from stopping illegal gambling? Something much bigger than local politics is going on.

Anonymous said...

Why can't these politicians just figure out a way to legalize all forms of gambling without all of the controversy.. One word: payoffs.