You Never Know When Your Number’s Up!

Lottery Stories in the News

Real stories about the lottery/lotto pulled from headlines (Can’t make this stuff up!)

lotto machine

Dec 28, 2017: A computer glitch in the South Carolina lottery caused multiple winners. What seemed like a Christmas gift turned out to be coal. The error lasted more than 2 hours, generating an abundance of winners and the system was suspended. Read more.

August 22, 2017:  The lottery commission knew exactly what they were doing when the increased the pool of numbers from which to choose….the increased the odds…and increased the jackpot levels, thereby increase interest in Powerball. READ MORE.

Aug 21, 2017. While on July 24th a doctor diagnosed a New Zealand lottery winner with euphoria after winning $7.6 million (wouldn’t you? read more) Eddie Tipton (pictured left) of Texas is experiencing the exact opposite.

It seems Mr. Tipton, a computer programmer at the Central Iowa office at the Lottery Association, was caught and admitted to rigging a multi-state lottery and is facing 25 years in prison. It seems he and his brother admitted to fixing the lottery six times in five different states winning $2 million. Read more HERE  HERE and HERE.

But winning isn’t’ everything. Many winners are facing tough times. For example $110mil winner Cynthia Stafford donated and spent her way into bankruptcy. Here are some other winners who became losers.

July 20, 2017: Jules Parent, a 69 year-old man of Quebec City has won the Canadian lottery a second time!

Read More


June 30, 2016: NYPD Cop buys winning $65 million winning ticket…by mistake!

Vito Viola, a sergeant with the 120th Precinct of the New York Police Department, serving since 2005, followed his wife’s order when he bought lottery tickets on the way home. He had a dollar change and took an extra quick-pick ticket. The next next morning his number was up. The ticket was a winner worth $169 million dollars.

Hey, you never know!  Read more: HERE   and   HERE.

Meanwhile, the MegaMillions jackpot is climbing to near record numbers with a prize of $415 million. Powerball is up to a mere $243 million.

That’s a lotta ziti!

Feb 1, 2016: Here’s a story of a man who challenged the lottery system buying large blocks of tickets. The concept is discussed within the dialogue of our film, MEGABALL$, but in practice it’s, well, impracticable. Maybe back in 1992, when there were less number combinations. But back then, one man won 14 lotteries. READ MORE:

With the Powerball odd so high, why do we buy tickets? In our script our characters explain it as we’re buying hope. We’re buying ourselves the opportunity to fantasize about what we’d do with vast wealth. Here’s an article on this subject at the Atlanta Journal Constitution.

Jan 21, 2016: From what seems like a made up storyline in our film, MegaBall$ ….A recent winner of a 1/2 million dollar lottery in Georgia was killed overnight from gunshot wounds. Read More …. In fact, there are stories about ten lottery winners who died tragically READ HERE and HERE and HERE. As we say in our tag line, “You never know when you’re numbers up.

Jan 10, 2016 – With no winner on Saturday’s record-breaking Powerball prize, the value is expected to rise to over $1.3 billion. This brings up a new issue: the lottery overseers will need to redesign all the digital signs across the nation, and this includes billboards, and even their website. Why? Because the current designs only have 3 digits restricting

the prize amount display to only $999 million…..


We’ll need to adjust the screenplay of MegaBall$ to reflect the trend on increasing jackpots.

January 6, 2016: The sixth highest Powerball lottery drawing is tonight, with an estimated prize of $450 million. That’s a lotta ziti! My supporters remind me that every time there’s lottery mania MegaBall$ gets free publicity. The ten highest-ever lottery prizes occurred once we began developing our comedy film, MegaBall$. Coincidence?

Read more

Dec 23, 2015: A Powerball official who has run the Powerball game since its inception was quietly removed after a jackpot-fixing scandal.  Eddie Tipton, former security director, under investigation, was convicted in July of fraud for working with associates in an attempt to claim a fixed jackpot. Read more HERE  and HERE and HERE.

A 61-year old man, homeless for six years, won a $500,ooo scratch-off lottery in Colorado. He had spent the weekend sleeping on the floor of St. Mary’s Catholic Church before its director drove him to the lottery office. Sometimes good things happen to people in need. Read More.

Here’s another lottery story from ‘believe it or not.” I seems a  spirit medium in Bangkok who had a reputation for predicting winning lottery numbers was found shot dead, possibly by underground lottery operators. Here’s the full story.

When is a winner not a winner? When it’s a lottery win of more than $600 in Illinois.  Due to a stalemate in the Illinois State Budget as of October 15, the State will not issue payout checks for winnings above $600. Two lottery winners have filed a federal lawsuit against the Illinois Lottery seeking to the agency to pay winners of more than $25,000 with a 5% interest. The suit alleges more than a dozen await prizes. Read more HERE and HERE.

It seems all that glitters may be gold, but not legal. A probe into lottery-rigging widens in Iowa. A lottery official has been accused of rigging up to three drawings over 5 years. The “rigger” was convicted in July of fraud and given a 10-year sentence in an attempt to rig a 2010 drawing, and now faces additional charges.

In case you haven’t seen it, here’s a funny but astute video about the lottery by John Oliver (“Last Week Tonight). CLICK HERE

A winning lottery ticket sold in Brooklyn, NY (#Cash4Life) worth $7 million remains #unclaimed and is about to expire. The NY Lottery has put up wanted posters (these are real!). Read more HERE … and HERE …and HERE.

               Lotto-Posters-Wanted-0723b          Lotto-Posters-Wanted-0723a

A Canadian man beats the odds! A lightning strike survivor wins a $1m lottery. The odds of being struck by lightning in Canada are slightly less than one in a million; the odds of winning the Atlantic Lotto are 13,983,816 to one. READ MORE….and MORE. Those are truly odds to die for!

Here are two stories of reports about unclaimed lottery tickets expiring. Sorry guys, you won but you lost: Story 1     Story 2  – and a link to many  NBC News reports  about lottery winners.

Here’s a good piece about buying all the possible combinations of a Powerball game. By the way, the Feb 11th Powerball prize actually totaled $564 million, and there were three winners – North Carolina, Texas and Puerto Rico. By the way, you can download the free NYS Lottery APP HERE.

Lotto slug

One of the largest Powerball jackpots in history will be today, Feb 11. 2015, and growing every hour. Here’s a CBS report on the prize. One of the great things about this project, lottery news like this in some ways becomes marketing fodder for the film.

Feb 6, 2015: The jackpot for the PowerBall lottery will now be more than $450 nillion, making it the third largest in PowerBalls history. Fascination with the lotto (MegaMillions and Powerball) has been increasing since we began developing this comedy film. The largest jackpots in lottery history have occurred in the past three years. Read more by clicking on these links: Powerball MegaMillions

An arrest in an unclaimed lottery ticket – click here

An independent comedy feature film by Oroloro Entertainment