Attorney General Henry McMaster has filed an appeal over a South Carolina judge’s ruling that tossed out charges against five Texas Hold ’em players. Circuit Judge Markley Dennis ruled to overturn the gambling convictions of five Mt. Pleasant Texas Hold ’em players who were arrested in 2006 for playing poker. Although about 20 players were arrested, these five men put up a fight, wanting the court to change a 200-year-old South Carolina law of no gaming.
In September, the judge ruled to overturn the men’s fines and ruled that Texas Hold ’em is a game of skill. Attorney General Henry McMaster has now appealed that decision after he said the judge erred when he tossed out the charges. McMaster says the fact of whether the game is one of skill or not is not the point. He told the Post and Courier “In the General Assembly’s view, the ills resulting from games played for money does not depend upon the particular game or the nature in which it was played.” Judge Dennis claims the old law was “unconstitutionally vague,” but McMaster says it may be old, but that doesn’t make its legal content unclear. There is no timetable on when the appeal will be heard.