Author Topic: Player Returns from Break to find Chip Stack Gone  (Read 8220 times)

K-Lo

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Player Returns from Break to find Chip Stack Gone
« on: January 03, 2012, 11:22:48 PM »
Situation:

Players are sent on break, and asked to clear the playing area. 
As players take their seats again, one player says that his chip stack is missing.
Dealer and other player at the table remember that the player had chips before the break, but did not see where they went since.
The player indicates that he had 12k in chips.  It does not readily appear that the neighbouring player might have scooped up the chips by accident or otherwise.
There are no cameras.  All the players at the table claim they did not see who took the chips.

What would you do now?

I looked up the forums for some similar rulings, but they are a bit contradictory and not directly on point:

http://www.thehendonmob.com/tournament_director3/missing_chip_stack
http://www.pokertda.com/forum/index.php?topic=225.0

chet

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Re: Player Returns from Break to find Chip Stack Gone
« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2012, 12:21:10 PM »
K-Lo:  In my opinion, once players are told to vacate the area, the "house" assumes responsibility for whatever happens, ASSUMING it cannot be established that any other player 'took' the missing chips.  One thing you might try is to audit (count) all the chips in play to see if someone just absconded with the alleged missing stack(s).  If there are chips missing in the amount in question, I believe you need to replace that players stack.  I don't see any other course of action.  If there are no missing chips after the "audit", then you have someone in your event that is dishonest.  However, since you require the players to vacate the area, I again see no alternative other than to replace the chips.  You can discretely make inquiries to see if some other players 'stack' grew mysteriously during the break, but without concrete proof, I think making an allegation would be treading on thin ice. 

Hopefully you'll get better answers from others.

Chet

Nick C

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Re: Player Returns from Break to find Chip Stack Gone
« Reply #2 on: January 04, 2012, 02:09:48 PM »
K-Lo,
 I think Chucks advice is right on. With no cameras, What else can you do? We could try to come up with another way to better protect players chips when they are on a break. I wonder if some type of lucite cover might work, kind of like the "play-over box" that is sometimes used in cash games? I'm sure the cost factor would stop it in the very large tournaments, but it might work in smaller events. Dealers seated at the tables, at all times, sounds like the best solution.

Stuart Murray

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Re: Player Returns from Break to find Chip Stack Gone
« Reply #3 on: January 05, 2012, 10:38:21 AM »
I've experienced this in "some" events and it is constantly the same grouping of players, who attend one regional final that we experience problems with, it is mostly the chip race that we experience that when they return someone somewhere will claim that they had x instead of what they now have, we could do little about it, auditing the entire tournament to count the stacks did not prevail anything, and often would result in a wildly inaccurate in play count, we simply had to come up with a figure that everyone at the table agreed upon and give it to them.  In other events with players from different regions it was much easier, it has happened twice from memory, and the chips had gone to the player who was 'buying' the redundant chips, therefore no need was ever made for additional chips to go into circulation.

We have since clamped down severely on the region that complains practically each regional final they have, we supervise the emptying of the cardroom more strictly, and ensure we have a totally sterile cardroom, when racing off one floor races the table and the TD or Manager will remove the chips from each table, colouring up what he has removed as he goes. The end result was the last two events we have held for that region have not had any issues when returning from breaks.

We have had situations like your previously, namely (same regional final players again) someone stole the high denominations from a stack of sets which were already out on a table, to be frank there is little to nothing you can do, unless a camera catches it (this was in a casino but unfortunately the cameras surrounding the table did not catch the culprit!)

Unless you can get some consensus at the table as to what has happened to return the chips to the player from another players stack, you just have to issue additional chips into play which I detest doing, as effectively you are aiding and abetting illicit conduct at your tournament.

Tightening up on your security measures is the only way to try to prevent issues from occurring.

Regards
Stuart

K-Lo

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Re: Player Returns from Break to find Chip Stack Gone
« Reply #4 on: January 05, 2012, 04:27:01 PM »
Thanks all for your input.  I agree that we have to be much more vigilant re: security measures to prevent these issues from popping up.

Do you think clearing the playing area actually helps the situation?  I wonder what would happen if we did not insist that players leave the playing error, and leave the responsibility of keeping their stack safe to them?  (I don't think this is ever done - I'm just thinking hypothetically...)