ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) - An employee was shot Wednesday
afternoon inside the Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort and died soon
afterward, and a regular patron who knew him was in custody, state
police and the casino's CEO said.
Ray Kot was a shift manager who had been with the casino since
the day it opened in 1990.
"He was the loveliest human being you ever want to meet," said
Mark Juliano, CEO of Trump Entertainment Resorts, which runs the
casino. "He didn't have an enemy in the world."
Juliano said there did not appear to be a dispute between Kot
and the shooter, whose identity wasn't disclosed.
Kot, of Egg Harbor Township, was shot three to four times in a
nonpublic office just off the casino floor, Juliano said. He was
taken to a medical center, where he died a few hours later
State police said the shooter was a 57-year-old man from
Norristown, Pa., who apparently knew Kot from past instances as a
patron at the casino. Charges against the man were pending.
A state police spokesman said the shooter's name wouldn't be
released until Thursday.
Norristown, a Philadelphia suburb, is about 80 miles northwest
of Atlantic City. Pennsylvania gamblers still make up a significant
part of Atlantic City's clientele, although the advent of slots
parlors in the Philadelphia suburbs has siphoned off many gamblers
who once had little choice but to drive to Atlantic City.
The shooting and its aftermath were not visible from the casino
floor, and the gambling hall remained fully open until management
shut its table games down Wednesday evening and sent home workers
assigned there. Slot machines remained open.
Police said they recovered the gun used in the shooting after
arresting the suspect in a parking garage.
It was the second incident involving a gunshot at the casino
On Jan. 30, a suspect in a New York embezzlement case pulled a
gun and threatened to kill himself in an office there, sparking an
11-hour standoff that included his accidentally firing a shot
before he surrendered.
In that incident, the man, from Coram, N.Y., was being sought by
New York authorities who had tracked him to the casino and were
escorting him into a security office.
During questioning, the man pulled out a handgun. A police
officer pushed him into a holding cell and locked the door.
The Taj Mahal is the largest of three Atlantic City casinos run
by Trump Entertainment Resorts, the gambling company formerly run
by Donald Trump.
Trump relinquished control of it during a 2005 bankruptcy, and
in February he resigned as its chairman when bond holders rebuffed
his efforts to buy it.
The casino, located on the Boardwalk, is one of the largest in
Atlantic City, with 4,000 slot machines and 210 tables games. It
opened a 782-room second hotel tower last September.
The Taj Mahal, along with the Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino and
the Trump Marina Hotel Casino, is in bankruptcy court following a
February Chapter 11 filing.