For 18 years, Glenn Pompei, owner of two liquor stores, never sold a winning state lottery ticket from either store.
But twice in the past two months, a winning Jersey Cash 5 ticket has been sold from each of his stores in Morris County.
On Wednesday night, some lucky ticket holder won the top Jersey Cash 5 jackpot prize of $263,820.
The ticket holder, which was purchased at Pompei's Ridgedale Wine & Liquors at 480 Ridgedale Ave., has yet to claim the prize.
Pompei said he expressed disbelief when he learned that the winning ticket was purchased from his store.
"I can't believe this. Honest to God, I can't believe this because in the 18 years I have had the (lottery) machine, I never had one winner and now I have two winners within a month."
Pompei referred to another Jersey Cash 5 winner in his other store, Hanover Liquors, who won about $169,000 in the second week of February.
That time, it took the man close to five weeks to claim the money, Pompei said.
"My sister who runs the machine over there couldn't figure out who the heck won because nobody was claiming it," Pompei said. "She was running the tickets one day and a guy gave her a ticket and said, 'Do me a favor. Punch these numbers in.'"
"My sister said, 'These are the numbers that won Tuesday night.' He didn't say nothing. He kind of stuttered and ran out of the store."
The winning numbers of Wednesday evening's drawing were 01, 12, 16, 33 and 40.
Selling the winning Jersey Cash 5 ticket will give Pompei a bonus of $750.
In addition, lottery ticket retailers also receive 5 percent commission on the sale of lottery tickets plus 1.25 percent for payout of prizes.
Pompei noted the extra cash will come in handy.
"I need money for a fence in my backyard," he said.