A man from New Mexico is understandably angered after he bought what seemed to be a winning scratch ticket worth more than $500,000, only to be told by officials that it was a misprint and refuse to pay out.
Recently retired John Wines bought the New Mexico Lottery scratch ticket at a Shell gas station in Roswell, Chaves County, in December. It featured the winning numbers “1” and “2”. As Mr Wines began scratching, he uncovered two “1s” — each worth $250,000. He later scratched open another “1” (worth $75) and two “2s” (worth $500 and $50, respectively).
Assuming that the stated maximum prize of $250,000 was wrong, Mr. Wines drove back to the gas station to collect his winnings. Instead of paying out, however, the employee told him he had not won anything. She explained that the “winning” numbers were actually double-digit numbers which had seen their right-hand-side digits omitted as a result of a misprint by the lottery. Mr. WInes told KOB 4 News:
I took it back in and she told me that is not a winner. They told me that it was a misprint and they don’t pay off for misprints.
And if you looked closely at Mr. Wines’s “winning” ticket, you would see part of several digits that are supposed to be next to the “1s” and “2s”. However, it is unknown what figures they are meant to be. Moreover, the letters beneath the “1s” and “2s” — which are an anti-fraud security feature and respond to specific numbers (such as 14 = “FTN”) — clearly refer to other numbers.(Scroll down for the video.)
1. John Wines, who has recently retired, bought a New Mexico Lottery scratcher — featuring the winning numbers ‘1’ and ‘2’ — from a Shell gas station in Roswell in December. Above, Mr Wines with the ticket.
2. As he started scratching, he came across two ‘1s’ (pictured) — both worth $250,000. However, he was later told they had been misprinted — and were, in fact, double-figure numbers that were not winners.
3. Mr. Wines later uncovered another ‘1’ (worth $75) and two further ‘2s’ (worth $500 and $50 respectively) — two of which are pictured above — that were also revealed to be the result of a lottery misprint.
Still, despite the evidence to the contrary, Mr. Wiles claims to have bought a winning ticket, saying:
There’s a 1 right here for $250,000. Right below that is another 1 and it’s a $250,000 winner. I mean, if you thought you won $500,000 and somebody tells you that you didn’t, and you can prove you did, it’s pretty stressful for somebody to say, “no you’re not getting your money”.
After the gas station refused to pay him any winnings, Mr. Wiles contacted the New Mexico Lottery, which also told him, in an email, that his ticket was definitely “not a winner”. Instead, as a goodwill gesture, the Lottery offered him $100 in scratch tickets, according to KOB 4 News. As you might expect, Mr. Wiles was not grateful. He said:
This is $500,000. That’s a half million. It’s like I told them, I didn’t misprint it. I bought the ticket in good faith thinking if I won I was going to get my money.
Yes, that is a tough pill to swallow.
4. ‘I mean, if you thought you won $500,000 and somebody tells you that you didn’t, and you can prove you did, it’s pretty stressful for somebody to say, “no you’re not getting your money”,’ said Mr. Wines.
5. Following the gas station’s (pictured) refusal to pay him any cash Mr Wiles contacted the New Mexico Lottery. But they told him in an email that his ticket was ‘not a winner’ and refused to honor his ‘winnings’.
Here is the video report:
And here is a similar incident from just over a month ago:
Source: KOB 4 News.
Share this story with your friends and your thoughts in the comments below. Please retweet it to your Twitter followers — they would want to read that, too.