Cali Woman Loses $26 Million Lottery Prize After Washing Winning Ticket

Money laundering doesn’t pay.

A Californian woman reportedly missed out on $26 million after putting her winning lottery ticket in the laundry.

Having bought the ticket at an Arco AM-PM in Norwalk, the unnamed woman matched all six numbers on the November 14, 2020 draw. She had exactly 180 days to collect her prize money … and the deadline passed on at 5 PM on Thursday.

According to the store owner, the lucky/unlucky woman came into the gas station on Wednesday and told him she had accidentally run the ticket through the wash, and destroyed it.

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He even had security footage showing her buying the ticket, which was turned over to lottery officials; but according to lotto rules, video evidence alone simply isn’t enough.

The woman, who is in her 40s, is a frequent customer at the store; the manager told her she should identify herself to reporters gathered at the store on deadline day, but she declined.

The store has since recorded over the footage of her buying the ticket. California State Lottery would not confirm or deny its existence to KTLA.

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Not that it would have sufficed anyway; without the ticket itself, a photo of the front and back would at the very least be needed to attempt a claim (which is why they recommend taking a snap whenever you purchase one).

After taxes, the unfortunate woman would have been entitled to $19.7million. She can take a small solace knowing that since it went unclaimed, it will be donated to California’s public schools instead.

According to lotto officials, the school system has received more than $1billion in unclaimed prizes to date.

And a little more good news for the store: it still gets its $130,000 bonus for selling the ill-fated ticket.

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