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Ohio winner of $196M lottery jackpot claims prize anonymously

Mega MillionsMega Millions: Ohio winner of $196M lottery jackpot claims prize anonymously

The $196 million lottery prize for a Mega Millions ticket sold in the Clermont County village of Amelia in May was claimed Friday by a lawyer on behalf of an undisclosed client.

The ticket was submitted for The Anthony Trust, said a spokeswoman for the Ohio Lottery.

The name of the winner is known to Ohio officials, who will check for possible unpaid child support or unpaid state taxes, said Ohio Lottery spokeswoman Marie Kilbane.

An exception to the Ohio Public Records Act means state officials don't have to reveal the identity of the winner if a so-called blind trust is created, Kilbane said.

"Not every state has it," Kilbane said of a procedure for setting up such a trust for lottery winners. "Here in Ohio, it's a way that players can keep their anonymity. It's typically only done for extremely high prize winnings."

The winner opted for 26 annual payments. The first one, for $5.2 million after $2.3 million in federal and state taxes are withheld, should be made within 30 days, Kilbane said.

The winner will then receive $7,538,000 annually for 25 years — before taxes. The amount withheld from those payments could change, Kilbane said.

A winning ticket has been sold in Ohio 11 times since Mega Millions started May 15, 2002, Kilbane said. Seven of those winning tickets were submitted on behalf of trusts.

The address for the May winner's trust was 1900 Fifth Third Center, 511 Walnut St. in Cincinnati, Kilbane said. That's the address of the law firm of Graydon Head & Ritchey.

The attorney representing the trust was Christine A. Buttress, a partner in the law firm. She has practiced law in the area of estate planning for more than 25 years, according to her company resume. Her voice mail said she would be unavailable for several days.

Buttress appeared at the Ohio Lottery's headquarters in Cleveland on Friday morning to complete the claim, Kilbane said.

Amelia Mayor Leroy Ellington said he had no idea who the winner might be or whether the person lived in the village of about 4,000 residents.

"Whoever won, if they did live in the village, my guess is they don't live in the village now — maybe Florida, a place with an ocean breeze," Ellington said.

Whoever bought the ticket will have to continue to pay state taxes on the winnings even if the person doesn't live in Ohio or moves to a state without a personal income tax — such as Florida, said John Kohlstrand, spokesman for the Ohio Department of Taxation.

"It counts as Ohio income," Kohlstrand said.

It shouldn't be an issue that the identity of the winner isn't made public, he said.

"Oh, we'll know," Kohlstrand said. "We're the Tax Department."

Village Council expects to receive a recommendation July 7 from a committee studying whether Amelia should impose a 1 percent earnings tax for those who live or work there, Ellington said.

It had been discussed before the lottery ticket was sold. If such a tax had been in place when the ticket was sold, Amelia could have shared in the winnings, village officials said. Amelia's annual budget is about $2.8 million.

"I'm happy for whoever it is — a bit jealous — but happy for them," Ellington said. "If I won $1 million, I would just run down and claim it. But $196 million, I don't blame them for being discreet."

The ticket was sold May 16 at Main Street Wine & Spirits in Amelia. It was an auto-pick. Among the five chances played was a line with the winning numbers: 6, 11, 39, 46, 47, with Mega Ball 26.

"I'm happy for whoever it was," said Mike Goldstein, who owns the place with his wife, Barby. The store received $100,000 from the Ohio Lottery for selling the ticket.

Goldstein declined to discuss whether the person who bought the winning ticket could be identified on video from store security cameras.

Not that he looked, Goldstein said.

"I'm not a voyeur."


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35 comments. Last comment 9 years ago by DC81.
Page 1 of 3

United States
Member #58528
February 18, 2008
710 Posts
Posted: June 27, 2008, 10:36 pm - IP Logged

Congratulations to the lucky winner!!


Very intelligent person to claim the winnings in a blind trust.Must be a fairly young person,too,seeing as they chose the annuity.I think that all lotterys should allow the winners to claim prizes without giving the names to the press.

    Bradly_60's avatar - disney37
    Atlantic Mine, Michigan
    United States
    Member #416
    June 23, 2002
    1614 Posts
    Posted: June 27, 2008, 10:52 pm - IP Logged

    That probably is smart.


    But I don't think it was a smart idea to go with the annuity.  You can easily beat the return on treasuries. 




      United States
      Member #10720
      January 23, 2005
      933 Posts
      Posted: June 27, 2008, 11:09 pm - IP Logged

      Yeah, 7.5 mil./yr. is hardly enough to buy a bag of rice and a can of corn these days. Aaaaaaaaagh!!!!! Why was it not ME!?!?!?  When am I gonna win????????  Booooooooohoooooooo I never win!!!!!!!!

      I always groan when it's in Ohio, the only time it was any fun was when the "Battle" situation occurred. I get kind of bored with these BlinD TrusT things. Might as well have said, the last jackpot was 196M, the next one will be 12M, not even bother to say anyone won... then it would be even more secret! Don't even say what State they were in or the store that sold it.. you wouldn't want mobs of people flocking to the Store thinking they might be next!

        Lotto*Love's avatar - lips
        Washington *state*
        United States
        Member #62009
        June 14, 2008
        192 Posts
        Posted: June 27, 2008, 11:11 pm - IP Logged

        Wow! Thats a long wait! I guess they choose what would be best for them.  I can see the anonymous thing, but man,there goes my story reading.lol Hope they have a blast!!!! I would totally be booking a flight somewhere tropical right now!

        Surrender You can run, but you can't hide mighty Jackpot...surrender to me at once!

          ThatScaryChick's avatar - x1MqPuM
          United States
          Member #56506
          November 21, 2007
          6537 Posts
          Posted: June 28, 2008, 12:15 am - IP Logged

          Congrats to them! I'm sure they made the best decision that fit their needs and lifestyle. Afterall, they are the ones who won.

          "No one remembers the person who almost climbed the mountain, only the person who eventually gets to the top."

            DC81's avatar - batman39
            United States
            Member #54830
            August 31, 2007
            985 Posts
            Posted: June 28, 2008, 12:55 am - IP Logged

            Figured that winner was going to claim anonymously but then they chose the annuity over the lump sum and good for them for doing it but I wonder why it took so long, maybe they did move in that time?  But young or not, IMO it wasn't very wise taking annuity since now they're going to be paying taxes on it for the next 26 years and now the town wants a piece of it too. Even 1% is going to result a nice chunk of change for an area they probably won't even be living in anymore, not to mention having to continue to pay state taxes as well as federal taxes that'll certainly go up during that time. At least with the lump sum you get it all out of the way at once and can safely invest it in something low risk and pay less (at least now) on whatever dividends you may get. In 26 years they certainly could turn the 70 or so million they would have after taking the cash and paying taxes into a much higher amount than what the annuitized jackpot was. Then again, maybe they're a financial idiot who would have gone broke if they did take it all at once. Oh well, don't matter hope they enjoy the next 26 years and don't screw it up.

            You can't predict random.

              United States
              Member #23835
              October 16, 2005
              3502 Posts
              Posted: June 28, 2008, 1:35 am - IP Logged

              Ohio gets to collect income tax on all of it, whether they take it as a lump sum or annuity. It's just a question of whether they collect it all now or a bit each year. The village can enact any kind of tax they want. The income doesn't come from the village, so if the winner doesn't live there in the future they won't have to pay the tax.

                DC81's avatar - batman39
                United States
                Member #54830
                August 31, 2007
                985 Posts
                Posted: June 28, 2008, 5:15 am - IP Logged

                D'oh! Yeah, you're right, I wrote that after just waking up and wasn't fully awake yet, it should have read more along the lines of how the the area would be trying to cash in on it if that person stayed in the area, which then they would have to pay it.. As for the state taxes, of course in 26 years time they would pay less each year but the state could raise the tax and then they'd have to pay more, same with the federal, I doubt either will be lowering any time soon and wouldn't be surprised to see the Federal Income Tax go up within the next two or three years. I still think they might have been better off taking the lump sum though.

                You can't predict random.

                  sirbrad's avatar - Lottery-062.jpg
                  United States
                  Member #22983
                  October 6, 2005
                  2226 Posts
                  Posted: June 28, 2008, 5:52 am - IP Logged

                  Come forward you wuss. How do we know it was a legitimate win and not a lottery scam? Claiming it this way makes me determined to find out who it is, otherwise I would have forgotten the name by tomorrow. Claiming anonymously is not so great after all is it?

                    Republic of Texas
                    United States
                    Member #57557
                    January 9, 2008
                    1095 Posts
                    Posted: June 28, 2008, 7:37 am - IP Logged

                    Good for this person. Hurray!  I hope they stay smart and the money lasts for generations.

                    I don't agree though on the annuity. I'm with DC. It would have to be somewhere in the $300m range before I would consider the annuity, regardless of age.  Then again, it may be right for this person. 



                      New Member
                      Member #58790
                      February 26, 2008
                      1 Posts
                      Posted: June 28, 2008, 9:53 am - IP Logged

                      thats magnificants hope 2 join u as a winner soon.

                        tntea's avatar - Lottery-059.jpg

                        United States
                        Member #5344
                        June 30, 2004
                        23641 Posts
                        Posted: June 28, 2008, 11:18 am - IP Logged

                        Congrats to the winners.


                        I dont think they waited too long.   We would waited even longer to collect.

                          AuntiePat's avatar - animaniacs10
                          Just outside of Cleveland, OH
                          United States
                          Member #54079
                          August 3, 2007
                          106 Posts
                          Posted: June 28, 2008, 11:33 am - IP Logged

                          Come forward you wuss. How do we know it was a legitimate win and not a lottery scam? Claiming it this way makes me determined to find out who it is, otherwise I would have forgotten the name by tomorrow. Claiming anonymously is not so great after all is it?

                          Anyone who remembers the younger couple (at least she was. . .maybe like 27) who won the $20M jackpot in the Canandian Lottery  will also remember the story that appeared a few months after their win about some guy who hatched a plan to kidnap the family to extort their money and then kill them all so as not to be identified. . .or maybe we could remember Bud Post's brother who was attempting to hire a hit man to revenge what the brother thought was not enough of a gift. . .or the thousands of reguests that well publicized Jackpot winners are deluged with. . .or Jack Whitaker's famous (infamous) hijinks, lawsuits, and tragedies that a huge Jackpot brought to him. 

                           I could well imagine why many lottery winners wish to remain anonymous. . .so they don't end up as a cautionary tale on some new 'Curse of the Lottery Winners' show on 'E' or 'A&E' or some other cable show looking for fodder during a slow holiday weekend.   And who can (if they were members) forget the heated discussion about 'Bunky and the Lottery Win' about a year ago--lots of people here mocking him (although most, if I remember correctly, defended him) 


                           Some people can handle the intense scrutiny that a Jackpot win brings them and others cannot--I'm no LotteryWinner but I already had a mooch threaten to hurt my parents if I didn't give him 100K of their money just before a con man got hold of them and had them liquidate 75% of their estate and give it to him to "invest".  The guy that threatened AND the conman are BOTH in prison, but my parents' retirement  money was never retrieved. . .I've learned that if you have $1 more than the next guy then that guy will ask you for some of it and then threaten if you still say no.


                          If I EVER won--I would make most members of my family and my SO's family minor partners and let them know that was IT. . .move my parents. . .one time gift our friends and then just travel til the brouhaha died down.  Then I would return to my home state and set up educational projects in the schools and  prisons in my community so as to provide gainful employment  to those who are chronically unemployed in the only area of growth in the next five years--development of green energy sources.  I believe that gainful employment would have prevented the guy from threatening my parents. . .as for the conman. . .well I later found out that he had dome the same thing to his parents, his parents' friends, his brother (who had given him a job in brother's company), his brother's friends and other people like my parents who were essentially strangers. . . so prison is the only place for that guy where he cannot hurt any other family.

                          Just a thought

                            DC81's avatar - batman39
                            United States
                            Member #54830
                            August 31, 2007
                            985 Posts
                            Posted: June 28, 2008, 2:00 pm - IP Logged

                            Eek I wouldn't even need strangers for that sort of thing, I've got a family full of crooks. At least with anonymity my name wouldn't be in the paper and spread over the internet for millions of people to see and read. I'd just want to keep the list of potential ******** to a minimum. But, as soon as things are set up and the claim is made, I'm gone soon after that. Though I'd probably wait a little longer just to make it less obvious since it'd probably be a little dumb to go through the trouble just to go and make it obvious with disappearing right away. I think I could make way with buying a new vehicle as long as it wasn't something flashy. Still, I'm sure word would get out, oh well.... Actually there's not many people I know that I'd feel it worth paying a ransom for, especially when half my family would probably fake such a thing.Evil Looking As for coming after me like what happened with Bud Post, eh by the time they come about with that I think I'd be well equiped to handle someone trying to pull that on me. ChairThey probably couldn't afford to go after me anyway with gas being over four dollars a gallon and rising.


                            I just had a image of someone demanding a ransom and the person on the other end not caring and the kidnapper trying to negotiate.

                            You can't predict random.