Amid conflict, police no longer doing security at Twin River

Amid conflict, police no longer doing security at Twin River

LINCOLN – Tensions between Twin River officials and members of the Lincoln Police Department are on the rise after officers stopped showing up for detail duty at the casino.

Until about a month ago, Lincoln police logged 240 hours a week on the Twin River Casino & Hotel detail, earning time and a half for those shifts.

When casino leadership made the decision to cut back 16 total hours of the detail on Mondays and Tuesdays, officers responded by refusing to show up to all detail shifts at the casino.

Town Administrator Joe Almond, who has not stepped in to take any action up to this point, said he could not comment on the ongoing personnel situation unfolding between police and the casino.

He did confirm to The Valley Breeze that Twin River has continued to request the police detail from the town, and that Lincoln police have stopped responding to the request.

Officers continue to respond to emergency calls at the property, but maintain no regular presence there.

Only the Town Council can mandate the presence of a police detail at a local liquor establishment. Twin River is not required to hire Lincoln police officers for help with security.

Patti Doyle, spokeswoman for Twin River, said, “We continue to have and value our relationship with the Lincoln Police Department. We also continue to post shifts and are having ongoing conversations about the total number of hours the property requires LPD assistance.”

Twin River Casino has an internal security and surveillance team of 130 professionals, according to Doyle.

A statement from the LPD’s union representation called the relationship between the casino and local police “complicated,” thanks in part to the unique nature of Twin River.

“Unlike many casinos that tend to negotiate their way into towns and cities with written agreements discussing public safety, Twin River Casino has grown gradually over 50-plus years from a horse track to a 24/7 casino with table games, slots, an event center, sports betting and most recently a hotel. Yet despite what you may have heard, the town’s resources have not grown along with it,” the statement reads.

On the negotiations over the appropriate police presence at the casino, the statement continues:

“We understand they are a business and have different priorities than we do, but our concern has always been for the safety of the patrons of Twin River, the safety of the residents of Lincoln (including many of our own families) and of course the safety of our officers. We are hoping we can come to a resolution very soon.”

Negotiations between the parties are expected to continue after a meeting on Tuesday ended without a solution.

In April, out of the 57 incidents involving police at Lincoln liquor establishments happened at Twin River. There were 219 police incidents in Lincoln total that month.

The month before, 79 of 86 incidents at liquor establishments occurred at Twin River, with 26 ending in arrest.

In February, the casino was the site of 68 out of 72 incidents occurring at local liquor establishments. Sixteen of the 17 total arrests at Lincoln liquor establishments happened at Twin River that month.

Comments

I would be curious to know how this affects the town financially. Is Lincoln losing money because of this? If so, how much per week based on 240 hours or 224 hours (240 minus 16).