Poker Raid Turns to Gunfight

Friday, November 5th, 2010

Once he recovers, a 72-year-old man will be charged with attempted murder after getting into a shootout with the SWAT team who raided the private poker game he was hosting. From the Pokerati blog:

A relatively routine raid of a low-stakes poker game in Greenville, South Carolina turned bloody yesterday night — as police tried to gain entry to a poker house. The game host, now known to be Aaron Awtry, 72, shot through the front door, striking sheriff’s deputy Matthew May with a bullet that went through his arm.

A vice squad in SWAT gear returned fire, hitting Awtry with multiple rounds in his arm and thumb … which was followed by a 20-minute standoff between cops and players, according to a spokesman for the Greenville County Sheriff’s Department. Both shooting victims were taken to the hospital where they are in stable condition.

There were 12 people and Awtry in the house at 502 Pine Knoll Drive when police arrived at about 9:20 pm last night. According to frontline witnesses, they had just finished a small buy-in dinnertime tourney … and a 1/2 cash game was just getting underway when someone saw 5-0 approaching on a security monitor. Before he could clearly vocalize an alert, a battery ram begin slamming the front door and players froze. Awtry, who players say has notoriously bad hearing in his senior years and presumably believed the game was being robbed, began shooting at the door with his pistol, firing “at least once” according to a player, “multiple shots” according to police. At least four officers returned fire at the door with at least 20 bullets from their higher-powered assault weapons.

As Awtry fell back into the poker room entryway, he balked, “Why didn’t you tell me it was the cops?”

Local news coverage of the raid here. Police seized about $5,000 in cash. Everyone but Awtry was issued a $100 fine. Ironically, both the South Carolina Supreme Court and state legislature may soon clarify the state’s confusing laws about private poker games.

This is far from the first time police have brought the SWAT team to a poker game. covered a similar raid at on a charity poker game hosted by an American Legion post in Dallas.

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101 Responses to “Poker Raid Turns to Gunfight”

  1. #1 |  freekory | 


    Current Criminal Case:

    January 23, 2010- Kory robbed at gunpoint at his house by two unknown males. Pistol whipped and kicked in the head until unconscious. No police report filed, but did go to hospital. Total loss of approx. 20,000 in cash, electronics, and valuables.
    March (towards end of month, not sure exact date), 2010- Kory was notified that persons who had robbed him were planning on returning. And would possibly be wearing fake police uniforms to gain entry.

    March 31st:
    Police get affidavit signed. . Start surveillance at Kory’s residence at 9:45pm. Warrant signed at ________ by _______________.

    April 1st
    (Kory and Lauren (who is 2 months preg. With Kory’s child) both in Kitchen- preparing to leave to go to a friends house- then to winstar)
    Friend leaves house and calls Kory and Lauren’s phone to inform them that when he left he saw a black SUV outside the house, with someone inside. Lauren ask Kory to go and check it out but he blows it off.

    Sudden loud banging on door- caught of guard,

    Kory immediately assumes that he is being robbed again. He gets his gun from on top or the fridge and shoots three rounds in to the side wall of house (directly in front of him) as a warning to whomever is coming in that he has a gun too.
    As they continue to enter residence both Kory and Lauren retreat to the garage through the laundry room.
    As they retreat Kory fires three more rounds (two in ceiling and one out the window)
    While retreating over 30 rounds were shot at both Lauren and Kory. If he had not only pointed, but fired at two separate officers, wouldn’t they have shot him?
    Once in garage they decide they are going to try to run for help(still unaware its police)
    KORY THROWS HIS GUN UNDER THE TAHOE and then opens garage.

    He makes it less than 3 ft, then is shot in the thigh by an officer that was stationed on front lawn ( this is the officer he SUPPOSEDLY aimed a NO-LONGER-LOADED gun at).
    The gunshot hit the main artery of Kory’s leg and an officer had to put his finger in the wound so Kory wouldn’t bleed out at the scene. (They continued to search the house until 10pm that evening.)
    Once we were notified that the house was raided his mother immediately went to the house for Kory’s and Lauren’s dogs(2).
    When she got there the officers were still wearing masks and one officer was very hostile towards her stating that “he couldn’t care less where those damn dogs were “ and that he “couldn’t tell where Kory was”. Another officer let her know that she could pick the dogs up from the pound when it opened. And that “there was only one jail in Arlington”- implying that he was at the Arlington Jail (which he wasn’t). It wasn’t until his mother went to pick up the dogs at the pound where she was met by Lauren’s mother who informed her that Kory had been shot. Once we found out we began trying to find him at several different Hospitals and Jails. We were then informed that we were not allowed to know ANY information about Kory (including his location, where he was shot, if he had had surgery, if he was critical, ect.) for FIVE days, due to their POLICIES. Couldn’t go near house due to the fact it was an active crime scene.
    April 2:
    I was the first one to go into house after police had left. Didn’t touch anything but notice they hadn’t taken any computers except for Korys brand new Mac Book Pro. Also notice how sloppy Police were (left drug test kits, paraphernalia, and bullets that they had shot in house) Informed Kory’s mother that they had left the house- she promptly comes over with Lisa (Kory’s son’s mother) and take over 100 pics of the house.
    Later that week- Hire an investigator from ER investigations (referred to us by Shaw)- under the pretense that he would be collecting forensic evidence on our behalf (to prove through bullet trajectory that Kory wasn’t shooting at Officers) A couple days later he came to Kory’s house and met with Lauren and I. When he was there he said it was obvious that he wasn’t shooting at the police, but that the only way we could clear Kory of any charges would be if he snitched or if we snitched and it could be credited to him.
    Later the same day- Lauren and I go to Lori’s house to get paperwork for Lauren’s probation check in. When we were about to leave we were told that someone who had just left Lori’s house had been pulled over on 287. Then Lori leaves and is also pulled over on 287. Then Lauren and I leave and are pulled over on 287 (for speeding-but we had cruise control on). We were detained at 7-11 where at least 7 different officers and a k-9 unit search the car (including engine) looking for large amounts of money???? We were both searched once by a male officer and then again by a female. Were held there for over an hour- after finding only a GHB test kit (left by police at Kory’s house that we were bringing to Shaw’s office) and synthetic urine. We were never given a ticket- however an officer did call Lauren’s probation officer and told him that she was involved in a drug raid and had synthetic urine in the car she was driving.
    Kory’s bond reduction/setting court date set on____. Charges that had no bonds set were set, however both the Att. Capital Murd. Charges were kept at a million dollars each. PER D.A. LISA CALLAHAN. Also- notified that both Billy and Lauren would have a future court date to decide whether or not Shaw could represent them due to conflict of interest. Shaw files appeal on bond settings.
    On April 23rd 2010, Billy and Lauren’s court date about conflict of interest- both are told they need new lawyers-and subsequently given court appointed lawyers. (Why? If Billy and Kory had both been represented by Shaw for the past five years on that case? Why NOW is it a conflict??) Lauren arrested at this court hearing for probation violation.
    A coupleof months later Callahan decided to force Jim Shaw off of Kory’s case as well. Ststing conflict of interest… but he was no longer representing any other parties in this case. Jim Shaw has since been removed from his case and he was given a court app. Lawer who has still not made contact with Kory. As of 11/14/10 it has been over a month and he has yet to hear from his attny at all. And he can not afford another attny b/c shaw refuses to refund any of the 35,000 dollars that Kory had given him for his legal defense. Yet he did NOTHING to defend him, nor did he file a timely appeal to his outrageous bond ammts as promised.

    So many things wrong with the whole situation. I am very aware that Kory has made very poor judgement in his lifestyle, as is he. I’m not in anyway trying to deny that he was involved in criminal activity and in illegal substances- I’m just trying to get him legal justice for the charges alleged against him which are totally unfounded. 2 att capital murders- when he never shot toward police (and thought he was being robbed) and in police swarn statement NOTHING ABOUT ANY SHOOTING WAS MENTIONED- and when looked up the actual offence report of the shooting LAUREN WHAYLEN is the only one listed as the offender? And an agg asslt against a police officer?? that he never even saw? When he no longer had a weapon?? who actually shot him and almost took his life?? Please someone help.