ISLE OF WIGHT, Va. (WVEC) -- A large scale illegal gambling operation was shut down in Isle of Wight County Wednesday.
The raid took place at Wicked Vapes on Carrollton Blvd. One after another Isle of Wight Sheriff's Deputies removed 39 computers used for illegal slot machine style gambling.
“We know that Wicked Vapes as been here for a little over a year and we’re pretty sure the gaming operation, gambling operation, started the same time the business opened,” said Lt. Tommy Potter.
The sheriff’s office says the only vape products in the shop were expired, it was all just a front for a miniature casino.
“You would go in, you would pay so much money, you would spend some time on the machines, you would win or lose money, you would cash out and receive money as you left the business,” said Potter.
The raid was an accumulation of months of police surveillance combined with community vigilance.
“There is no sign out front yet there were large amounts of people coming and going from this business late at night, that’s what drew the suspicions of the locals in the area,” said Potter.
Local business owner Jimmy Ferguson, of Major League Builders, said his wife always pointed out that something didn’t seem right about their neighbor.
“We would just come by around 9 or 10 at night and just drive by and it’s just full of people and she was like, ‘what are those people doing there,’ and I was like, ‘I have no idea,’ so she was more aware of it than I was,” said Ferguson.
Ferguson said he’s glad deputies shut the operation down and said it doesn’t reflect what their community is all about.
“I grew up in Isle of Wight County and for the most part everyone is just hard working people,” said Ferguson.
The sheriff’s office has yet to release how many people were arrested in this case and what kind of charges they will face.