First on 9: Lenoir Co. Sweepstakes ordered to shut down in 30 days

LENOIR COUNTY, N.C. (WNCT) – The Lenoir County District Attorney has ordered all sweepstakes cafes in the county to shut down in 30 days or possibly face prosecution.

Lenoir County Commissioner Eric Rouse provided 9 On Your Side a picture of a signed letter from District Attorney Matthew Delbridge ordering the cafes to shut down.

Sheriff Ronnie Ingram also confirmed cafes received notice to shut down.

Clover City Internet Cafe and Win A Lot Internet Cafe posted on their Facebook pages that they received orders to shut down operations.

The owner of Clover City Internet Cafe confirmed she received a copy of the letter.

The announcement came more than a week after a 9 On Your Side investigation raised questions about the legality of sweepstakes in the county.

The investigation found that the Lenoir County Sheriff’s Office and District Attorney allowed sweepstakes cafes to continue operating even though the state legislature outlawed them and the state Supreme Court upheld it.

9 On Your Side obtained e-mails from Sheriff Ronnie Ingram including one from September saying Delbridge was considering prosecuting the cafes.

The owner of Clover City Internet Cafe asked people in her Facebook post to come out to a county commissioners meeting on Monday at 5 p.m. at the County Courthouse to show support for sweepstakes cafes.

Stay with 9 On Your Side as we work to get interviews with the Sheriff’s Office and District Attorney.

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