Gambling your way out of prison?

At first, I thought that this news story might be a parody of get-rich-quick schemes. But unfortunately, it looks to be authentic. Judge for yourself, from Frost Illustrated:

“How do you get someone to change their mind about robbing someone, stealing someone’s identity or selling drugs for money?” asks S. Silas Patterson, author of the book, “An Ex-Cons Guide to Living and Winning (at Slots, Blackjack, Roulette and Craps).”

“You have to replace the money they’re making with a new income source, and that new source had better provide them with just as much (if not more) money than they were making otherwise why change?” answers Patterson. “So where can these men and women get that kind of money? From the casino, that’s where. I’m going to help repeat offenders, career criminals, ex-cons and inmates doing time get the money they need to live a crime free life through gambling.”

Providing a lucrative alternative for making money is essential to preventing ex-convicts from falling back into the trap of crime, said the author, who has some personal experience in the criminal justice system.

“It’s a sin; a downright dirty shame when you put someone behind bars for years then release them back into society,” he explained. “These men and women are not prepared for the harsh way the world is going to treat them. Odds are they’re going to rebel and when that happens, they will resume a life of crime in just weeks or months of their release. Its time someone does something about the ‘commit-acrime go-to-jail-get-out-commit-a-crime’ cycle. Who better to work with inmates and ex-cons than another ex-con?” Patterson asked.

“My mission is to turn their attention away from their intended victim and point them toward a casino,” he said. “For example, the two men arrested and charged with allegedly murdering the two Virginia families. What if they had had my book when they were in prison the year before?

“Then there’s the man who allegedly beat that Washington D.C. newsman to death for his credit cards back in December 2005. What if my book were available to him before he allegedly committed this crime? If the men who allegedly committed these crimes had been taught how to get the money they wanted from the casino, maybe their victims would still be alive today. No crime committed equals no victim. No victim equals a reduction in crime, a reduction in recidivism and a safer America,” said Patterson.

Convicted felon fights crime through gambling

I checked out Patterson’s website, and he seems to be peddling yet another can’t-miss gambling system. Here’s a quote:

I’m going to help you get the money you need to live a crime-free life by teaching you a gambling method with a proven 92% win probability. What this means is that there’s a 92% probability you’re going to win verses an 8% possibility of losing. I’m not saying you can’t lose, I’m saying that the odds favor you winning.

From what I gathered on his “try it for free” page, Patterson thinks that thousands of ex-cons can stay out of jail by using a “don’t come” craps strategy. He claims this will let players win “92% of the time,” but in fact the don’t come bet has a house edge of 1.4%, so players will win 48.6% of the time. A slower way of losing money than keno, but hardly a ticket out of poverty. Yet Patterson says that, by following his system and placing four bets an hour, players can make $48,000 a year.

There are a series of endorsements, including one from an AC blackjack dealer, a guy from Torrance who may be making nearly a half-million dollars a year, and a therapist with a BA. Although I haven’t read the book so I can’t be completely sure, I’ll offer an endorsement of my own:

“Trying to get rich by gambling is a really bad idea.”
— David G. Schwartz, Ph.D., Director, Center for Gaming Research, UNLV

If this site is a joke, it’s a good one. I can’t imagine anyone paying $6000 and 30% of expenses to have someone advise them on gambling. Just a note–if you are shopping for a speaker on gambling, casino, or Las Vegas history, I work much cheaper than that, and provide a stimulating visual presentation and talk that is an ideal post-lunch entertainment for your convention group.

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