Prove your humanity

Anticipation was running high for the Powerball jackpot which had reached $688 million. That changed for Harlem residents this past Sunday. They woke up to discover that one of their own had become a millionaire. The winning jackpot is the largest Powerball prize this year. The winning numbers – 8, 12, 13, 19, 27, and Powerball 4 – were purchased at a West Harlem bodega. The site sees a lot of lottery players cycling in and out of the store. The identity of the local winner still remains a mystery though. Lucky for him or her, New York winners have one year to claim prizes. Remaining anonymous is not an option, however. “It’s mandated that they come to a public event to receive their check,” said Brad Maione, a spokesman for the New York State Gaming Commission. “It protects the integrity of the lottery and bolsters public confidence that people actually do win.” “Lottery officials will reveal the winner about two to four weeks after he or she comes forward,” Mr. Maione continued. The prize may be received in annual installments or as a one-time lump sum. The cash payout, which is the most popular deal, would be worth around $396.4 million. Perhaps even bigger news, however, is that the big prize is being shared by with another winner. This would make the split $198.2 million. The second winning ticket was sold at a rural town in Iowa. While it is Iowa’s 9th winner, the winners seem to be worlds apart. The news stunned the small community of roughly 800. “Even we are awestruck,” Iowa Lottery CEO Terry Rich said Sunday morning. “This goes to show what we’ve said many times: You never know when the next big winner will hit.”

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