View Full Version : BIG TIME ILLEGAL Gambling in small town IOWA

04-05-2003, 09:10 AM

Indianola, Ia. - An alleged sports betting ring based in Norwalk received wagers from across the country and as far away as South Korea and Costa Rica, authorities said Thursday.

Eleven suspects face a total of 14 felony charges including sports wagering, bookmaking and money laundering, Warren County authorities said Thursday.

Officials said they seized $500,000 in cash and $160,000 in property as they investigated a multistate illegal gambling operation.

Authorities would not discuss Thursday how bets were placed or what events were wagered on.

Warren County Attorney Gary Kendell said he believes millions of dollars have been wagered since 1999.

Investigations are also under way in Illinois, Minnesota and New York for activities connected with the Des Moines-area gambling operation, officials said. Search warrants were served in Des Moines and Norwalk, as well as in Nebraska and Arkansas. The results of the warrants were sealed at the Warren County courthouse.

Four people were charged with running the operation. Robert Derryberry, 59, of Norwalk; Martin Scarpino, 46, of Des Moines; Paul Clergy, 60, of Des Moines; and Gary Fingalsen, 68, of Rock Falls were charged with bookmaking, a felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison. They also were charged with participating in an ongoing criminal activity, a felony punishable by up to 25 years in prison.

The ongoing criminal activity charge is a state violation comparable to the federal racketeering law, said Kendell.

Derryberry was charged in 1988 with shooting a man and paralyzing him. The shooting occurred when Derryberry found his estranged wife, Diane, and the victim in a pickup truck in Clive. Originally charged with attempted murder and willful injury, Derryberry was allowed to plead guilty to going armed with intent and served less than five years in prison.

Derryberry's attorney, F. Montgomery Brown of Des Moines, said his client will plead not guilty to the gambling charges. Brown said false information was given to obtain a search warrant, and he questioned investigators' methods.

"The media should ask whether the authorization to use multiple agents to conduct surveillance, threaten law-abiding sports fans with prison, subpoena and review pages and pages of documents for purposes of alleged sports betting, is an appropriate expenditure in our state when we do not have sufficient monies to pay our teachers, balance the budget and finance local homeland security," Brown said in a statement.

"The media should ask why the taxpayers have borne the burden of financing likely thousands of investigative hours when any citizen with a credit card can bet online on sports . . . from the comfort of their office or den."

Others charged include: Diane Derryberry, 50, of Urbandale, Bob Derryberry's former wife, who was charged with perjury; Dave Summy, 51, a social studies teacher and head football coach at Indianola High School; Jerry Watters, owner of Watters Autoland, an Indianola car dealership; and Stanley Walk, 55, of Rock Falls, a Mitchell County supervisor. They all were charged with illegal gambling, a Class C felony punishable by 10 years in prison.

Summy is also the high school's girls' tennis coach and for several years had been a reserve officer with the Indianola Police Department.

Mayor Jerry Kelley said Thursday that Summy had been a reserve officer. "I suspect he is on leave now."

Walk, who owns a tavern in Rock Falls, sued Iowa State University student Dustin Weiner in 2000 for accusing a bartender of not checking Weiner's driver's license before police arrested him on a charge of underage drinking. The lawsuit was believed to be the first of its kind in Iowa.

A judge ordered Weiner to pay $60 to Walk. Both sides appealed the ruling.

Also charged Thursday were Jarid Downey, 30, an Indianola businessman; Bill Westlund, 63, an Urbandale insurance agent; and John Sather, 55, of Round Lake, Minn. They all were charged with illegal gambling, a felony that carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison.

Eight of the suspects had been arrested by Thursday evening. Most were released on bond.

Register Staff Writer Jeff Eckhoff contributed to this story.



Related stories

Indianola High School football coach Dave Summy was one of 11 people charged Thursday in a sports betting operation.

Summy, 51, of 2200 Country Club Road in Indianola, was charged with second-degree illegal gaming and betting, a Class C felony.

Court records allege Summy placed sports wagers in excess of $500.

In 21 seasons at Indianola, Summy has a 99-94 record and seven playoff appearances - including last fall. His career record is 135-131 in 30 seasons, including nine years at North Polk of Alleman.

Summy, a social studies teacher at the high school, was charged in Warren County District Court and released on his own recognizance Thursday.

A preliminary hearing has been scheduled for April 11.

David McGowan, whose son Aaron McGowan was a senior on Indianola's football team last fall, said the charges against Summy surprised him.

"We were shocked because Mr. Summy's always been known as a disciplinarian and a very disciplined person," McGowan said. "I find the accusations hard to believe."

School officials will review proceedings before making any decision about his status, Indianola Superintendent Tom Narak said.

"From the district's perspective, we need to consult with our attorneys," Narak said. "I can't speculate or comment about what our decision would be."

A man who answered the phone at the Summy residence Thursday afternoon hung up when a Des Moines Register reporter identified himself.

A Class C felony in Iowa carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison, along with a fine of at least $1,000 and up to $10,000.

Rick Wulkow, an Iowa High School Athletic Association assistant executive director, said local school districts - not the state association - determine discipline in such matters.

"They're contracted employees handled through the school district," Wulkow said. "That obligation is a local thing."

Indianola athletic director Gary Telford declined to comment, citing school district policies regarding personnel matters.

Narak declined to comment on specifics, as well. He said the district's typical policy in such a case could involve placing an employee on administrative leave.

"He's innocent until proven guilty," McGowan said. "We just have a wait-and-see attitude and hope he's not wound up in this."

Another person charged, Jarid Downey, was a two-time Class 3-A state wrestling champion at Indianola. He won a 135-pound title in 1990 and a 145-pound crown in 1991.

Despite the boom of sanctioned gambling in Iowa, plus legal wagers available through casinos in Nevada and offshore Web sites, authorities said Friday that gamblers still are drawn to illegal operations such as the one broken up this week.

Authorities charge that Robert Derryberry, 59, of Norwalk, was the kingpin of a multistate illegal gambling enterprise. He turned himself in to Warren County authorities Friday and was released on $58,500 bond. He faces up to 45 years in prison if convicted on three charges.

Derryberry is one of 11 people - including three prominent Indianola residents and a Mitchell County supervisor - charged in a multimillion-dollar bookmaking operation.

Although legal gambling in Iowa has mushroomed to include a multistate lottery, scratch tickets, bingo parlors, casinos, and dog and horse racing, there is still a market for bookies in the state, said Eugene Meyer, associate director of the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation.

Some gamblers are drawn to illegal betting because the cash winnings are not taxed and there are no credit card statements that a spouse might find, investigators said. Others prefer placing bets over a few drinks while bragging about astute picks to the sterile atmosphere of placing legal bets over the telephone or by computer to a Nevada casino.

"A lot of them develop associations and develop relationships," Meyer said. "They deal with people they are comfortable with."

The Hollywood version of bookies at a bank of phones taking bets and recording the wagers on paper slips is still common. But the computer age has allowed wagers to be made through e-mails, Internet services and Web television sites.

Sports betting on professional, college and, to a much lesser degree, high school games are the most common wagers, said DCI gambling experts.

Authorities would not comment on how the alleged Norwalk bookmaking operation worked, but Warren County Attorney Gary Kendell said it appears to have existed for several years.

Derryberry, who listed his occupation as a poker player in court documents, has lived in Norwalk for nine years. His former wife, Diane Derryberry, 50, of Urbandale, also surrendered to authorities Friday on a charge of perjury in connection with the investigation. She was released on $9,750 bond.

Records seized at an undisclosed Des Moines location and Robert Derryberry's Norwalk home led authorities to charge others with illegal gambling. They include Indianola High School football coach David Summy, Indianola automobile dealership owner Jerry Watters, and Indianola business owner Jarid Downey. Authorities said the men had betting accounts with Derryberry. They face felony gambling charges, which carry a maximum 10-year prison sentence.

Summy's arrest elicited the greatest reaction from Indianola residents Friday.

Indianola Schools Superintendent Tom Narak said students and faculty members were shocked by the coach's arrest. He said when there are allegations of serious misconduct against an employee, it is school district policy for the person to be placed on paid leave until the charges are resolved.

"There are a lot of questions, a lot of concerns," Narak said.

Other Indianola residents wished Summy well.

"The coach is a decent guy who has a decent family," Paxton Fenimore, 24, said as he ate lunch at the Crouse Cafe on the town square. "Maybe he just likes to make a bet once in a while. A lot of people do."

Matt Drake, 21, played for Summy as quarterback several years ago and the two had a sometimes rocky relationship.

"Maybe he should be in jail for bad coaching, but not for gambling," Drake said.

Indianola Mayor Jerry Kelley has known Summy for years as a teacher, coach and a reserve police officer. The mayor said he thinks the current profusion of legalized gambling contributes to the belief that wagering is a pastime and not a problem.

"When Iowa went down the road of legalizing all kinds of gambling, which I am opposed to, it blurred the line of the community of what is legal and what is illegal," Kelley said. "Iowa has problem with the message it is sending to its young people and the message it is sending everybody else."


04-05-2003, 05:40 PM
Welcome to the modern age. They NEVER should have legalized gambling in that state. Should have focused on building the economy, bringing in new industries and strengthening/modernizing the farming industry. Uh, hello ... people need clean and healthy FOOD ... not dog tracks.

Well ... now when my aunt says, "When are you moving here? There's a great house right across the street from ours." I can tell her ... "I'm not living in THAT lawless town full of gambling and sin." ;)

kool-aid killer
04-05-2003, 06:37 PM
Oh yeah!!! Midwest is getting grimey.

04-06-2003, 04:57 AM
I'll bet $100 you'll never find stories like that in my neck of the woods!!

04-07-2003, 12:02 PM
Yea that's probably connected to the resturant that was the drop off and pick up site for the sister gambling ring here in Minnesota.

The Awata's resturant in Woodbury MN was raided and busted a little while back for being a bookies station. Clients would come in, drop off envelops to the bar tender or owner, pick up their winnings and be on their way. They were saying the roots went farther, but I think the two might be connected since the money found and seized was similar to what they yanked outta the resturant. 500,000 is a huge chunk of cash.

I wonder if I'll hear more about tonight.

On a side note, in Minnesota we do have a legit bookie who's been in operation since the 60's. He's been tried countless time, but since he's a little mentally handicaped and mentally slow the court can't do anything about it. He can still run his gambling operation and it worth a few millon. He can't even carry on a simple converstion with the news companies, but ask him any math problem, odds, or stats questions and that guy is sharp. His mind is for numbers only.

04-07-2003, 02:53 PM
Yea if I recall they did make some arrests in Minnesota.