Masked man Joe Garcia Strikes in Las Vegas

Masked man Joe Garcia sneaked into Vegas a year ago, with a mask on his mug and theft on his mind, as the city awoke from an 11-week pandemic lockdown.

He’d dupe some hundred individuals out of around $25,000 in cash. But, whether it was all planned or a chain of incidents that culminated in a frantic escape remains to be seen.

John Murges, 57, a Chicago native, was one of several victims of this well-connected con artist who disappeared into thin air. Garcia would make a name for himself at the South Point, Westgate SuperBook, and The D, landing an invitation to Circa’s Golden Ticket grand-opening party in late October. Garcia was recruited as an independent contractor in a promotional position by Jared Holley, who runs Sports Gambling Daily (SGD) in Texas, and no one considered the possibility of him being a con artist.

A former San Diego officer presented Murges to Garcia, who then introduced Murges to vice president Jay Kornegay and executive director John Murray at the SuperBook on June 30. Murges met Stevens and Palm through Garcia at the D.

Murges had created Wager Globe, a prospective sports-betting portal, during his 10-day tour to wager the very first two NFL weekends. Garcia’s contacts were valuable to him because of this. Garcia was a whopping 24-3 against the NBA spread in public through December. He announced a $100 monthly tout service via a secret Twitter account a week into 2021, feeling emboldened. Garcia had told Murges he had done time for drug offenses. 

Murges had partnership paperwork in place, but he would never offer Garcia, who was becoming exceedingly agitated. Garcia informed Murges that he had to go to Southern California since he was in town for the AFC and NFC championship games.

Garcia disappeared on January 24.

Many people believe 270 people paid $27,000 for the service. However, others claim to have received reimbursements, so the bill may be closer to $20,000. Being “ghosted,” according to one source, was particularly aggravating.

Over 50 of those impacted were summoned by Murges, who repeatedly apologized for associating with such filth.

Joseph Watkins is an avid gambler and also contributes the in-depth & most recent Las Vegas casino news stories. He joins as a news-editor recently with almost two years of experience in sports news writing.

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