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One dead, two in custody after attempted robbery at illegal Internet cafe outside Havana

Both suspects are in custody and facing charges of attempted robbery, felony murder and more.
Posted at 6:31 PM, Nov 15, 2023
  • Illegal internet cafes can lead to a number of secondary crimes including, prostitution, assault, murder and drugs.
  • Two suspects are in custody. Both are facing charges of Attempted Robbery, Felony Murder and more.
  • View the video above to learn about the legalities of Internet Cafe's

BROADCAST TRANSCRIPT:
One person is dead and two are in custody after an attempted robbery at an illegal internet café right outside Havana city limits.

I'm Ashley Engle your neighborhood reporter in Havana. The Florida Gaming Control Commission told me about internet café's and how they can lead to violence like this.

Along this stretch of Florida-Georgia Hwy sits Evan's Quality Grocery Meats and Deli. It's also known as an internet café and where the attempted robbery happened early Wednesday morning.

"Problem with these internet cafes, sweepstakes and adult arcades is they're all illegal, they should not be operating in the first place."

Eric Carr, Director of External Affairs of the Florida Gaming Control Commission, tells me an Internet cafe is an adult arcade which offers slot machines. He says this internet café operates slot machines, which are illegal.

"Anytime you have a large amount of cash, you have instances where criminals are going to want to come and take that cash."

Carr says illegal internet cafes can lead to a number of secondary crimes including, prostitution, assault, murder and drugs.

According to the Florida Gaming Control Commission, slot machines are heavily regulated by FGCC.

They are legal only in the eight para-mutual facilities in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties and at certain Indian tribal facilities. None are in Gadsden County.

According to the Gadsden County Sheriff's Office, the shooting at this cafe started after an attempted robbery.

Deputies say they found one victim was killed. Another was taken to the hospital and treated. Two suspects are in custody. Both are facing charges of Attempted Robbery, Felony Murder and more.

"We're coming up on the holidays and unfortunately robberies do pick up on the holidays."

Havana Police Chief Tracy Smith says they have quite a few internet café's in the area and that this isn't the first time they had an incident like this. This is an attractant to people who are looking for a quick way to get cash.

"Unfortunately, in this situation, lives are destroyed all the way around. Families are destroyed. I spoke to one of the mothers of the suspects. Just destruct. You know it impacts friends, family and the entire community. "

People who are wanting to gamble, Carr says to stay away from internet cafés and go to a legal regulated facility because, "when you go to these places, there is zero consumer protection. So when you walk into these places in Havana, they are all illegal, they should not be operating. We're working on shutting them down. But with that being said, that operator can throw you out of the facility, not pay you. And there's no recourse that local law enforcement or the state can do."

Gadsden County Sheriffs Office says the shooting is an ongoing investigation and anyone with information regarding this incident should contact them.