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Minnesota Lottery Director Dies in Apparent Suicide

Minnesota LotteryMinnesota Lottery: Minnesota Lottery Director Dies in Apparent Suicide

The longtime director of the Minnesota State Lottery apparently committed suicide Tuesday, a day after meeting with legislative auditors examining the lottery's operations, officials said.

George R. Andersen, 53, had a wound that appeared to be from a knife, said Cmdr. Scott Malinosky of the Washington County sheriff's office. He said a note was recovered, but declined to describe it.

Malinosky said authorities were called by Andersen's family about 7 a.m. after they found him outside their home northeast of St. Paul. He was taken to a hospital and pronounced dead.

Legislative Auditor James Nobles said in a statement that he met with Andersen on Monday to discuss a report on the lottery due late next month.

"We had a cordial and productive meeting, and when I left I thought George had handled the meeting well and he seemed in good health," Nobles said.

The audit was meant to look at how the lottery was run as opposed to a review of its accounting. Nobles declined to discuss the content of the audit or elaborate on the meeting.

The audit was requested by state Sen. Ann Rest, who spoke with the auditor about the review Tuesday. She would not provide details, but said it would recommend ways "to improve the performance of the lottery."

Rest said she became concerned last year when the Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy studied the lottery and concluded that it costs far more in Minnesota than in comparable states.

In response, lawmakers placed stricter limits on operating expenses, which resulted in 34 layoffs in October.

Gov. Tim Pawlenty said he was not aware of any financial irregularities in the lottery office nor was his administration investigating Andersen.

The governor called Andersen "a tireless advocate for Minnesota." In the 2002 budget year, the lottery contributed more than $43 million to the state's environmental efforts, according to the lottery's Web site.

Andersen, who had been director of the lottery since it began in 1990, was married with two grown children, according to a statement from the lottery.

AP

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10 comments. Last comment 11 years ago by emilyg.
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curt777's avatar - pacman
Palatine, IL
United States
Member #734
September 24, 2002
61 Posts
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Posted: January 28, 2004, 7:39 am - IP Logged

This kind of news scares me.  I always worry that my state's lottery is "fixed" somehow...  Illinois, probably THE most corrupt state in the union.  The fact that this guy actually killed himself over possible accounting irregularities doesn't bode well for the average player.

What do you guys think ??

Curt Little Lotto King 

    BabyJC's avatar - Lottery-031.jpg

    United States
    Member #3271
    January 7, 2004
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    Posted: January 28, 2004, 7:45 am - IP Logged

    How awful.  It sounds as though he thought it was just a matter of time before criminal activity was discovered and did not want to go to prison.  There's sure to be a much more extensive audit done now!

      Lotto Czar's avatar - sam
      Harrisburg, Pa.
      United States
      Member #3093
      December 23, 2003
      233 Posts
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      Posted: January 28, 2004, 9:10 am - IP Logged

      Yes, what a shame.  And especially with Corporate Crime what it is (Tyco, Imclone, OmniMedia, Enron, Rite-Aid...I can go on.)  But some of us who work in government like to think we're honest.

      Sort of reminds me of a similar case here in Pa. many (about 20) years ago when the State Treasurer (I can't remember if that's what he was) R. Budd Dwyer called a press conference, started talking, pulled out a large envelope, got oot a gun and shot himself.  On live TV.  Died instantly.  He was up to no good, and the guilt overcame him.  The ironic thing was that I voted for him for something, since his opponent, the late Al Benedict was even a bigger sleeze who was convicted of all sorts of dishonesty, like selling jobs, bribery, etc.  Lucky him, he jost rotted away in jail.  Then there was Ernie Preate.

      Yep, just like Jack Whitaker, too much money can make one do strange things.

      My condolenses to all of you in Minnesota.

        BabyJC's avatar - Lottery-031.jpg

        United States
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        January 7, 2004
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        Posted: January 28, 2004, 3:28 pm - IP Logged

        Lotto Czar - That story about R. Dwyer was unbelievable!  I never heard about that before.  I feel sorry for the people that were there; they must have freaked out!  How awful that if he was going to kill himself, he chose to do it in such an outlandish way.

          mayan27's avatar - Lottery-009.jpg
          Minnesota
          United States
          Member #2426
          October 2, 2003
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          Posted: January 28, 2004, 4:08 pm - IP Logged

             

                What a world we live in today.I was so shocked this morning when i read that news online.Maybe for his position,he could not bear the humiliation he caused himself,so he decided to die disgracefully by committing suicide.God,what a wonderful way you created man by giving us something called conscience.when a man of no value in society steals,we say thief,robber, and whatever word we know.But let those in authority or high position do the same,then the term "Embezzlement"fly on every part of the media.What is dont in the darkness will come to light at the appointed time.

            Avatar

            United States
            Member #434
            June 30, 2002
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            Posted: January 28, 2004, 10:44 pm - IP Logged
            Quote: Originally posted by BabyJC on January 28, 2004


            Lotto Czar - That story about R. Dwyer was unbelievable!  I never heard about that before.  I feel sorry for the people that were there; they must have freaked out!  How awful that if he was going to kill himself, he chose to do it in such an outlandish way.


            There is an interesting side note to this story...a Pittsburgh TV station (not sure which one) aired the footage of him shooting himself and was subsequently fined BIG TIME by the FCC.
              Lotto Czar's avatar - sam
              Harrisburg, Pa.
              United States
              Member #3093
              December 23, 2003
              233 Posts
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              Posted: January 29, 2004, 7:03 am - IP Logged

              smd1773-

              Yeah, remeber that too, and the controversy over media coverage that lasted for many months.  One of our own local stations abc27-WHTM was chastised heavily (though I don't think they were fined).  I do remember vividly, as if it were last night Tom Brokaw on NBC nightly news airing a disclaimer and freezing the tape just in time.

              But guilt overcomes us all, doesn't it?

                Avatar
                illinois
                United States
                Member #3538
                January 29, 2004
                25 Posts
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                Posted: January 29, 2004, 11:29 pm - IP Logged

                hi everyone im new her

                  luckycat's avatar - animaniacs24

                  United States
                  Member #1687
                  June 16, 2003
                  1047 Posts
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                  Posted: February 1, 2004, 9:16 am - IP Logged

                  life is more precious  then  money.but in turmel can not think correct,may his family have support and comfort somehow.

                   

                      luckycat        >>>>>>>    purr-purr--purrfect                           

                    emilyg's avatar - cat anm.gif
                    Miss Kitty

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                    November 9, 2001
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                    Posted: February 1, 2004, 9:25 am - IP Logged
                    Quote:

                    love to nibble those micey feet.