Chan Pelton has been on the poker circuit for awhile now and has accumulated more than $300,000 in career prize money. He recently took part at the World Series of Poker Circuit stop at the Palm Beach Kennel Club in South Florida where he entered into a $1,000 buy-in no-limit hold’em tournament.
Pelton did extremely well at the event and turned out to be the eventual winner, gaining $47,061 in prize money along with a WSOP Circuit ring. However, CCTV footage reveals that during the final table, Pelton quietly pocketed a 25,000 denomination chip from his stack.
CCTV footage was looked at, after the staff at the tournament felt suspicious about the win.
When questioned, Pelton immediately returned the chip stating that he only wanted it as a souvenir. PBKC staff disagree with Pelton and believe that he stole the chip because he wanted to add it to a stack in a future tournament. Both the PBKC and the WSOP have come down hard on Pelton as a result of this and have officially banned him from all PBKC and WSOP events as well as from all Caesars Entertainment properties. The ban is with immediate effect and that means Pelton is not eligible to participate in the summer series in Las Vegas.
In a statement, PBKC Card Room Director Noah Carbone said
The integrity of our games is of upmost importance and regardless of the intent in question from this incident; we cannot sit idle and risk the stolen chips being re-introduced in the future. We take great pride in providing a fair and secure environment for our valued patrons and this unfortunate incident, while discovered and handled swiftly, should serve as a reminder to players that tournament chips are the property of the poker room and must remain on the table at all times.
Pelton’s disciplinary action went even further as he was forced to give up his ring, his prize money and the points that allowed him to qualify for the WSOP National Championship that takes place this summer. The runner-up, Chris Bolek was then promoted to first place and given the rewards that Pelton forfeited. Bolek’s second place prize money was then distributed among the other tournament players who shared in the money.
Pelton was clearly shaken by the whole episode and extremely disappointed at having to give up his prize money. He said
I’m literally shell-shocked. This is my livelihood, and this is the first time I’ve even been close to any sort of infraction.