Store owner, patrons accused of illegal gambling, North Charleston police say

Police cited eight people for illegal gambling Thursday during a search of a North Charleston grocery store, authorities said.

The North Charleston Police Department’s vice unit seized gambling machines and cash from Vereen’s Grocery Store, 5012 Rivers Ave., according to police spokesman Spencer Pryor.

Johnny Porter Vereen, the store’s owner, was given a March 11 court date in connection with the incident, he said.

Seven patrons who were playing on the machines were also cited for illegal gambling, Pryor said. He identified them as the following:

Barbara Rebecca Shaw, 57, of Otranto Road in North Charleston

Linda Powell, 62, of Athens Court in Charleston

Sandra Ann Smalls, 63, of Sumner Avenue in North Charleston

Melvene Hamilton, 59, Ashley Avenue in Charleston

John F. Nelson, 56, Russeldale Avenue in North Charleston

Derrelle Parker, 32, Karen Drive in North Charleston

Brenda Lee Nelson, 48, Crystal Road in Mount Pleasant

Reach Christina Elmore at 937-5908 or at