Thu, 3 Feb | News
Wash Out for Unlucky Lotto Player
One unfortunate lottery player may have left a $26m (£18.5m) ticket inside their trouser pocket - and had it destroyed in the wash.
Thursday was the final day that the winning ticket could be redeemed, however, no one came forward. The ticket was sold at a convenience store in a suburb of Los Angeles.
The ticket in question was sold at a convenience store in suburban Los Angeles. Thursday was the last opportunity to claim the winning ticket.
According to Esperanza Hernandez, an employee of the shop, a woman had come in the day before claiming she had put the ticket in her trousers and that it was destroyed in the laundry.
California Lottery officials are investigating her claim. The store's manager said that there was CCTV footage showing the woman who bought the ticket. She is also a regular customer known to staff of the store.
The rules state that someone who believes they are a winner must fill out a claim form.
Lottery spokeswoman Cathy Johnston said that if someone loses their ticket, they are required to show evidence of their ownership, such as a photograph.
There are options to receive the $26m prize as annual instalments or as a $19.7m (£14m) lump sum.
If the prize goes unclaimed, it will go to California’s public schools.
The store that sold the ticket is set to receive a $130,000 (£92,000) bonus commission.
It is very unusual for such large jackpots to go unclaimed.
Since 1997, only four prizes of $20m (£14.2m) or more have gone unclaimed, including a $63m (£45m) jackpot in 2015.