Late last month a Vacaville, California man thought he won $10,000 on a scratch lottery ticket, only to have his roommate steal the ticket, which was actually worth $10 million!
The man went to a convenience store in Vacaville on December 20th, where he bought a $30 scratch off. The ticket was a big winner, and the man thought he'd won $10,000. He then went home to share the news with his roommate Adul Saosongyang. The next morning, the lucky winner went to a lottery office to claim his winnings with a ticket, only to be told it was a loser. It turns out that Saosongyang stole the winning ticket and swapped it with a loser!
The winner went to the police to report the ticket stolen. Authorities then began an investigation, where they obtained CCTV footage from the store, showing the rightful winner purchasing the ticket.
While the investigation was ongoing, Saosongyang went to claim his winnings, where he found out the ticket was worth $10 million. He went back on January 9th to claim his money, but was instead met by police who arrested him for suspicion of grand theft. He remains in the Sacramento County Jail.
The California State Lottery said that the rightful winner will likely get his winnings, but he'll have to be verified as the rightful owner of the ticket first. This serves as an important lesson in that players need to sign their winning tickets immediately after redeeming them.