An Anniston man tried his luck, again, and lost, again, when Calhoun County deputies on Monday raided his family’s store and confiscated gambling machines for the second time in 13 months, officials said.
Jerry Wade Allred Jr., 48, was charged with possession of gambling machines and distribution of a controlled substance on Monday after investigators raided JJ’s Food Mart, 3400 Alexandria Road, Anniston, and discovered seven gambling machines and cannabidiol oil, a substance extracted from marijuana plants, Calhoun County Sheriff Matthew Wade said.
Deputies raided the same store in January 2017 and found six machines then, as well as the oil. Allred and his parents run the store, Wade said.
“They can’t claim ignorance because it was explained to them after the first one that the machines and the oil is illegal,” Wade said. “There may be more arrests in this case.”
According to court records, neither deputies nor the Calhoun County District Attorney’s Office filed criminal charges in January 2017 for distribution of the oil or gambling machines, which is a misdemeanor offense.
A civil forfeiture suit was filed against Allred’s father for the machines and about $5,000 collected during the raid. The suit was later closed under an agreement that the machines be given back to the Georgia company they were leased from and the money be turned over to the Sheriff’s Office and the district attorney’s office.
Efforts to reach Allred or his parents were unsuccessful on Tuesday.
Wade said that as in the January 2017 case, the Sheriff’s Office got a complaint about the machines.
“When we get a complaint from a citizen, we look into it,” the sheriff said. “This has nothing to do with my personal opinion of gambling but it is against the law to be in possession of them. If people want to complain they should talk to the Alabama Legislature.”
Wade said he was unsure where the family got the machines from.
“You can buy them anywhere,” he said. “They thumb their nose at the laws and sell their drugs to our kids. I don’t think they should be allowed to operate.”