Seniors arrested during raid at Asbury Park home for illegal gambling; owner says they were 'just playing cards'

Authorities conducting a raid on an Asbury Park home in search of people with outstanding warrants stumbled on an alleged illegal gambling operation frequented by

Authorities conducting a raid on an Asbury Park

Authorities conducting a raid on an Asbury Park home in search of people with outstanding warrants stumbled on an alleged illegal gambling operation frequented by elderly players. (Credit: News 12 New Jersey)

ASBURY PARK - Authorities conducting a raid on an Asbury Park home in search of people with outstanding warrants stumbled on an alleged illegal gambling operation frequented by elderly players.

The owner of the Bangs Avenue home, 80-year-old Joseph Robinson, says he's nothing more than a good host. He says he offers drinks to seniors in the neighborhood who want to watch sports in his upstairs apartment and pass the time.

"Just playing cards," Robinson says. "They were looking for drugs and I don't dance with no drugs upstairs."

Three men were arrested on drug charges when the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office Tactical Narcotics Team stormed the house Wednesday evening. 

Robinson says Robert Pugh, 43, who was the intended target of the raid, is a tenant downstairs. But authorities tell News 12 New Jersey Robinson was also arrested and charged with operating an illegal gambling establishment.

About one dozen people allegedly gambling inside were handcuffed, including some elderly men.  An 88-year-old man was among them, but he insists they were just playing cards.

The prosecutor's office says the raid was part of "crime suppression operations" following recent shootings and violence in Asbury Park. It was aimed at creating police presence in the area with high visibility to build on community relationships.

advertisement | advertise on News 12

Trending Video

An attorney for Hopatcong Officer Nicholas Maresca says 1 Attorney: Officer had no choice but to hit man in bunny suit
Kevin Hodges (right) is accused of killing his 2 Police: Man used cleaver, sword, knife to kill mom, grandmother
Shop Small: Tons of Toys 3 Shop Small: Tons of Toys
Demolition has begun on a Totowa neighborhood that 4 Demolition begins on Totowa neighborhood damaged by hurricane
5 VIDEO: Totowa neighborhood to be torn down

advertisement | advertise on News 12

Features

It's good to know you have Walt Kane Kane in Your Corner

It's good to know you have Walt Kane in your corner.

News 12 takes a look at the hottest Tech Check

Eric Landskroner has a look at the latest gadgets and biggest stories in tech.

News 12 On the Scene

Check out these exclusive videos from New Jersey celebs!

Sorry to interrupt...

Your first 5 are free

Access to News12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Time Warner® and Service Electric℠ video customers.

Please enjoy 5 complimentary views to articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.

LOGIN SUBSCRIBE