The old phrase “finder’s keepers” does not apply in Pennsylvania one man learned after cashing a winning ticket he found on the floor of Harrah's Casino.
The Chester, Pa. man faces charges for theft of mislaid property.
“I thought it was finder’s keepers,” says Anthony Craig, the man charged for cashing the voucher.
Craig came across the ticket while at the casino on the 4th of July. He initially thought that the voucher was only worth 5 cents, but soon realized it was worth much more.
“It was for $200,” Craig says. “I thought it was my Fourth of July present.”
After cashing the ticket, Craig received a phone call from police on Wednesday. The person who lost the ticket had filed a complaint with state police at the casino, and surveillance cameras had captured Craig picking up the voucher.
“I told ‘em I didn’t take no ticket,” Craig says. “I found a ticket, I didn’t take no ticket.”
In Pennsylvania, there is no “finder’s keepers” law. Delaware and New Jersey don't have one either although police in those states say the most a person will traditionally get is a phone call to return the money. But in Pennsylvania, police say a person should know to return the money.
Craig’s niece Angelque Satchell says she saw her uncle at the Harrah’s the day he found the ticket.
She says she has been to that casino before and has never seen notices about returning winning ticket vouchers you have found.
“Doesn’t say anywhere on the floor, on signs, on the ticket itself that you need to return anything you’ve found,” Satchell says. “There are signs about gambling problems, but nothing about reporting a ticket you’ve found.”
Though Craig already cashed in the ticket he found, he’s willing to pay back the money. However, police have said that gesture came too late. Now Craig will likely have to pay much more than the $200 he found in order to settle the matter out in court.