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Bomb Scare Puts Detroit Casino on Lockdown

20/4/2009
Casino customers have enough pressure to deal with when faced with a hit or stand situation at the blackjack tables. But on Sunday night, they got more than they bargained for when a bomb scare at the MotorCity Casino parking structure kept hundreds of people frozen at the gambling tables after police cordoned off the entire area for more than five hours.

A security guard first spotted something suspicious, believed to be a collection of bombs, at about 5:20 p.m. And as a result, police went on full lockdown mode. Subsequently, two of the objects were destroyed and assessed as fakes, according to Detroit Police Sgt. Eren Stephens Bell. The total amount of objects collected could not be confirmed.

The casino stayed open during the whole ordeal and, for the most part, seemed like business as usual with gamblers and diners. But as the evening wore on, it took on a more sober affair with people standing idle, waiting for news on what was happening.

"We just want people to understand this was a precautionary measure," said MotorCity spokeswoman Jacci Woods once the garage reopened at around 11 p.m.

To help people cope with the situation, the casino offered free food and beverages as police and bomb squads, accompanied by K9 units from the Michigan State Police, combed the casino and surroundings.

An immediate knock-on effect was MGM Grand Detroit Casino increasing its security Sunday despite no immediate threats.

"We don't have any problems here," MGM Grand spokesman Jamaine Dickens said. "We have beefed up security and called in law enforcement with bomb-sniffing dogs, and they are sniffing our garage right now as a precautionary measure."
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