Kenneth Strauss who made a scene during the 2019 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event at the Rio has been through a turbulent time in the last few months. After his crazy antics at the WSOP, he was later arrested in Las Vegas on terrorism charges after a series of weird tweets.
Strauss refused to attend a Las Vegas court hearing last week. Chief District Judge Linda Bell found the 45-year-old mentally incompetent to stand trial and ruled that he should be admitted to a psychiatric facility, based on the findings of two psychologists. Judge Bell signed a commitment order sending Strauss to a maximum security psychiatric hospital in Sparks, Nevada. There is no indication as to how long he will stay at the facility.
Strauss was previously committed in a psychiatric hospital following his misconduct at the WSOP. He spent about a week at the facility before being released on July 15. Less than two weeks later, he was arrested and held on $150,000 bond for making threats concerning acts of terrorism.
Timeline of Bizarre Behavior
Strauss was holding Q-6 when he moved all-in during Day 1C of the 2019 WSOP Main Event, and eventually won the pot after hitting a queen on the flop. However, he was immediately disqualified from the event with his buy-in forfeited after dropping his pants and exposing himself to everyone else in the room. A video of him doing his act quickly made the rounds on social media.
The Pittsburgh native continued his crazy behavior as he did the same thing hours later, this time atop a table in the Luxor poker room, apparently drunk. The 45-year-old continued to exhibit unusual behavior in the days to come. He was reported to Las Vegas Metropolitan Police on July 27 after allegedly attempting to lure an 8-year-old boy into his room at the Red Rock Casino Resort.
Strauss later said he thought he recognized the boy from their neighborhood in Pittsburgh. Red Rock decided to force him out of the hotel’s vicinity after it learned that Strauss was being investigated for allegedly stalking a sports correspondent, later identified as Sarina Morales of ESPN, who Strauss believed was his daughter.
After being kicked out of the Red Rock hotel, police received reports from the Venetian about a suicidal man threatening to harm anyone who would approach him. The man was later found to be Strauss. Authorities went to the property but Strauss was no longer there when they arrived, despite the presence of armed personnel tasked to keep an eye on his room.
Strauss then moved to the Trump International Hotel and was able to successfully check in. It was where he posted a series of bizarre tweets and threatening messages, referencing the Las Vegas shootings and children being killed. His tweets included one where he apologized for what he said were “false” tweets, but then again following it up with some more offending posts.
Police finally caught up with him and indicted him in August for making threatening statements and conveying false information in relation to acts of terrorism.
Nevada Keeping A Close Eye on Terror Threats
The state of Nevada isn’t taking any chances when it comes to terrorist threats. Any person making statements related to terrorism will be legally liable, even if those threats did not actually harm anyone. If convicted, that person may spend up to 20 years behind bars.
The deadliest mass shooting in US history took place in Nevada in 2017, when Stephen Paddock opened fire on a crowd of tens of thousands of concertgoers during the annual Route 91 music festival on the Strip. He carried out the attack from his hotel suite on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel.
When Strauss used his Twitter account to encourage people to keep killing children, he opened himself up to terrorist charges in Las Vegas. While the court has found him mentally unstable to stand trial as of now, the court will make a ruling on his case once Strauss is fully evaluated and the doctors submit a full length report to the court for review.

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