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Georgia Lottery cracks down on 'shadow winners'

Georgia LotteryGeorgia Lottery: Georgia Lottery cracks down on 'shadow winners'
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The Georgia Lottery is launching a full-scale effort to crack down on so-called "shadow winners" — people who take a percentage of the prize to stand in for the real winner.

Anyone with a winning ticket over $600 must show the Georgia Lottery proof of ID to collect their money. Before that cash is handed out, though, the Georgia Lottery checks to see whether the winner owes any back taxes or court-ordered judgments such as child support or educational loans.

If that's you, a shadow winner can help you keep more of your big prize.

Kip Wise admits he's a shadow winner.  He was asked by a local reporter if he ever felt like he was doing something wrong.

"No. I didn't," Wise said. "I'm just like everybody else. I'm trying to get ahead and stay ahead."

Wise insists he's only providing a public service to his community. For years, the long time Griffin liquor store owner has pretended to be something he admits he's not: one of the luckiest lottery players in Georgia.

Since 2009, Wise has claimed 107 lottery wins of at least 600 dollars. Total collected: $137,915.

Let's just say not all of those are tickets Wise originally bought.

Wise said of the tickets that were not his, he was doing people a favor.

"Believe it or not, I've had people tell me they've never been to Macon. Never been to Atlanta," Wise said.

So instead of the real winner making that drive to collect at a Georgia Lottery office, Wise would step in, give the customer 75 percent of the prize and then tell the Georgia Lottery he's the official lucky guy.

Wise claims he's one of many shadow winners also working as a lottery retailer.

"I've had the opportunity to buy some and I didn't pay enough and they say so and so would pay more so I'm not the only one in the state of Georgia that might be buying tickets," Wise said.

But it's not just convenience. The Georgia Lottery says these so-called shadow winners can help the real winners avoid paying court-ordered debts like back child support or back taxes. And they can do it, over and over again.

The Fox 5 I-Team analyzed Georgia Lottery winners going back to 2009, including scratch-off and Keno, and found a lot of amazingly lucky people.

A Newnan man claimed 308 winning tickets. He collected $435,613.

An Albany man — 260 wins of at least 600 dollars. The Georgia Lottery paid him a total of $354,287.

In fact, the news station looked for anyone who won big 50 or more times, and found 98 big winners.

When asked if he was worried that perhaps he's participating in a scam to avoid people paying their child support, Wise said no.  "I don't know if they're not paying child support," he explained.

And Wise said he didn't want to know either.

Earlier this year the Georgia Lottery began scrutinizing all prize claims that require winner identification. Investigators also began studying just how often Lady Luck seemed to smile on some of those repeat winners.

That's how Kip Wise got caught. The state rejected his claim for a $1000 scratch off winner citing "highly improbable results" of his past wins, including a day last October when Wise cashed in nine winning tickets at one time.

He's one of 11 winners rejected by the state this year. Regardless, he says there are plenty more retailers like him, willing to work in the shadows of success.

"If they crack down on everybody in the state, they would crack down on 75 percent of the people in GA that are running lottery machines," warned Wise.

The Georgia Lottery announced other changes "to protect and educate our players and promote retailer integrity."

  • Develop "No Pay" lists at district offices, required those with questionable claims to be referred to lottery headquarters for further follow-up.
  • Acquiring analytical software and services to identify frequent prize claims.
  • Implementing "sting" operations to ensure Georgia Lottery rules and regulations are being followed.

Lottery officials point out that taxes and withholding are taken out of every winning ticket no matter who claims the money. The information is also sent to the IRS and Georgia Department of Revenue.

Since the Lottery began in 1993, $2,414,590 has been taken out of prize money to pay for back child support.

Thanks to Toney725 for the tip.

FOX 5 I-Team, Lottery Post Staff

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27 comments. Last comment 2 years ago by garyo1954.
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Vtracs is My Game!
Georgia
United States
Member #3617
February 6, 2004
7431 Posts
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Posted: September 12, 2014, 9:42 pm - IP Logged

GLC's new motto should be "By any means necessary!"

Congrats To All Winners and Posters!

LurkingWe are all in it to win!  My Pet numbers 103,724,152,397,189,118,205.

Ga Lottery Player!

Hot-Due-Cold. Short Sums/Last Digit Sum. Pairs. Vtracs. Vtrac Pairs. SUM OF VTRACS CHART.

Don't forget to FLIP 6/9 in all WORKOUTS!  66=99=69. Vtracs Code sheets available....

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    STONE MOUNTAIN GA
    United States
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    April 9, 2008
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    Posted: September 12, 2014, 10:07 pm - IP Logged

    If this is the case, they should investigate the Patels; they win on every second chance drawing, sometimes more than once.  Retailers are making a killing. They should not be allowed to buy tickets. I rarely buy scratch offs in the store because if you buy a bunch and don't win; they purchase tickets behind you.  If you're a drunk you can't sell booze (you would drink up all your product)  So if you are a gambler , you shouldn't be allowed to be a retailer.  2 million is kind of low for the amount of tickets they say they sell.  I wander when they will do an investigation on th the pay out amounts.  They should be able to show proof to the public.  I don't believe some of the pay outs they report.

      Bondi Junction
      Australia
      Member #57242
      December 24, 2007
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      Posted: September 12, 2014, 11:10 pm - IP Logged

      They should allow winners to remain anonymous, as they do in Australia and the UK!

      We all get a lot out of lotteries!

        Scratch$'s avatar - sm lottery.jpg

        United States
        Member #158848
        September 5, 2014
        294 Posts
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        Posted: September 13, 2014, 1:18 am - IP Logged

        The GA Lottery and state officials better be careful - they're walking a fine line here. If they start cracking down on lots of people for something that apparently isn't illegal at this time, they may very well cause many individuals to quit playing the GA Lottery all together. They might end up hurting revenues, not helping them.

        Scratchers ~ Cash 5 ~ Powerball ~ Mega Millions

          sully16's avatar - sharan
          Ringleader
          Michigan
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          October 28, 2009
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          Posted: September 13, 2014, 5:14 am - IP Logged

          That's a good thing. Pay your child support.

          Did you exchange a walk on part in the war ?

          For a lead role in a cage?

           

                                                      From Pink Floyd's " Wish you were here"

            CDanaT's avatar - tiger avatar_04_hd_pictures_169016.jpg
            TX
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            Member #121193
            January 4, 2012
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            Posted: September 13, 2014, 7:53 am - IP Logged

            That's a good thing. Pay your child support.

            So let me get this staight<scratching head> The lottery system was designed to make money for the state and to help pay for education and create a form of entertainment for the people(winnings) and now they are adding "Are you collecting for someone who may owe child support". Don't get me wrong on this.While I am 110% for collecting that money for those who owe it and parents being responsible for child rearing. This has to be one of the most GORMLESS attachments to a lottery payout system I have heard. These people are now challenging who is bringing in the ticket and why ??...let's take a look at whats possibly next with the government denying payouts....are you a smoker, do you drink heavy, do you do drugs, do you ride dangerous sporting equipment, do you spend your money on prostitutes, are you involved with a militia, do you stock pile weapons and ammunition, are you going to tip a waitress some place that may use her tip money to smoke pot...this scenario can go on and on.
            When a man or a woman shows up with a legally purchased lotto ticket at a lottery distribution center and presents it for it's intent(money transaction) It's none of the governments 'effing business what you intend to do with the money or how you spend it or share it. If that presenter owes back taxes or child support or is on some other sort of government assistance program( ex: unemployment) then take the money out. But if the presenter has no IOUs to Uncle Sam or Aunt State, leave them to h*ll alone and pay them... just a little sputtering from me in the peanut gallery.See Ya!


              RedStang's avatar - tallman zps6gf4inoc.jpg
              NY
              United States
              Member #121961
              January 21, 2012
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              Posted: September 13, 2014, 12:26 pm - IP Logged

               Protect our players(LOL) . Mean-while, nine out of ten Georgia Lottery employees will be trying to figure out how to cash in their winnings.

                Avatar
                Georgia
                United States
                Member #158146
                August 13, 2014
                76 Posts
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                Posted: September 13, 2014, 2:25 pm - IP Logged

                Wow! The state of Ga is giving me more reason to move away from here. smh

                  pwm2003's avatar - praying hands.jpg
                  Savannah Ga.
                  United States
                  Member #2329
                  September 16, 2003
                  1207 Posts
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                  Posted: September 13, 2014, 3:36 pm - IP Logged

                  Thanks Toney725 for posting this info , this is something that we in ga. need to know.

                  Saved By Grace and Mercy Big Grin Angel

                    noise-gate's avatar - images q=tbn:ANd9GcR91HDs4UJhjxO7cmeMQWZ5lB_FOcMLOGicau4V74R45tDgPWrr
                    Bay Area - California
                    United States
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                    December 12, 2012
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                    Posted: September 13, 2014, 3:41 pm - IP Logged

                    Wow! The state of Ga is giving me more reason to move away from here. smh

                    Georgia is not in the Top Ten States for unwed Mothers, but Florida & Mississippi are- Georgia may simply be trying to make certain that if it does end up in that pool that these Mother's do get the support they deserve.  They thinking outside the box.Move if you must, just don't forget to pay your child support. 

                      Avatar
                      Georgia
                      United States
                      Member #158146
                      August 13, 2014
                      76 Posts
                      Offline
                      Posted: September 13, 2014, 4:28 pm - IP Logged

                      I survived without child support and I lived in Fla. It's not about not paying child support. The lottery was not set up for that. This is why ppl have their wages garnished. Remember, a portion of what you lose is going into the lottery pool to pay winners. So yeah, I will be moving first chance I get because I don't play to pay for someone else's responsibility. Thumbs Down

                      What law says a person can't claim more than one ticket? How many times is a person allowed to win? I hear a civil rights lawsuit spewing and I don't owe child support. My child is 22 years old.

                        Avatar
                        Georgia
                        United States
                        Member #158146
                        August 13, 2014
                        76 Posts
                        Offline
                        Posted: September 13, 2014, 4:34 pm - IP Logged

                        If this is the case, they should investigate the Patels; they win on every second chance drawing, sometimes more than once.  Retailers are making a killing. They should not be allowed to buy tickets. I rarely buy scratch offs in the store because if you buy a bunch and don't win; they purchase tickets behind you.  If you're a drunk you can't sell booze (you would drink up all your product)  So if you are a gambler , you shouldn't be allowed to be a retailer.  2 million is kind of low for the amount of tickets they say they sell.  I wander when they will do an investigation on th the pay out amounts.  They should be able to show proof to the public.  I don't believe some of the pay outs they report.

                        I wonder how much they spend to help those addicted to gambling. They supposedly have set aside funds to help those too. But you don't see any stories about that. You have a good point. I could have sworn I have seen the same ppl claiming prizes of a different sort. hmmm...there is always shady about this though. *sips Kermit's tea*


                          United States
                          Member #93947
                          July 10, 2010
                          2180 Posts
                          Offline
                          Posted: September 13, 2014, 4:52 pm - IP Logged

                          So let me get this staight<scratching head> The lottery system was designed to make money for the state and to help pay for education and create a form of entertainment for the people(winnings) and now they are adding "Are you collecting for someone who may owe child support". Don't get me wrong on this.While I am 110% for collecting that money for those who owe it and parents being responsible for child rearing. This has to be one of the most GORMLESS attachments to a lottery payout system I have heard. These people are now challenging who is bringing in the ticket and why ??...let's take a look at whats possibly next with the government denying payouts....are you a smoker, do you drink heavy, do you do drugs, do you ride dangerous sporting equipment, do you spend your money on prostitutes, are you involved with a militia, do you stock pile weapons and ammunition, are you going to tip a waitress some place that may use her tip money to smoke pot...this scenario can go on and on.
                          When a man or a woman shows up with a legally purchased lotto ticket at a lottery distribution center and presents it for it's intent(money transaction) It's none of the governments 'effing business what you intend to do with the money or how you spend it or share it. If that presenter owes back taxes or child support or is on some other sort of government assistance program( ex: unemployment) then take the money out. But if the presenter has no IOUs to Uncle Sam or Aunt State, leave them to h*ll alone and pay them... just a little sputtering from me in the peanut gallery.See Ya!



                          "So let ME get this staight<scratching head>"

                          In most states, low income child support recipients find it much easier to qualify for cash assistance through welfare when their exes fail to pay what they have been obliged to pay.

                          Apparently, you would rather contribute to their support through your taxes rather than have the state dip in to their winnings.

                          By the way, what methods would you approve of the state using to collect from dead beat parents?

                          Are your payments up to date?

                            Avatar
                            Georgia
                            United States
                            Member #158146
                            August 13, 2014
                            76 Posts
                            Offline
                            Posted: September 13, 2014, 5:10 pm - IP Logged

                            I think the state should report it but let the court decide how much to take. Why allow them to keep a large portion of it after they take what's behind? Seems  to me, the mother could come out with more if this dude is $10k behind but he just cashed a $10 million ticket. ;-)