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CVS employee accused of stealing $1 million lottery ticket

Nov 21, 2017, 8:24 pm

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Illinois LotteryIllinois Lottery: CVS employee accused of stealing $1 million lottery ticketRating:

An Illinois man claims in a lawsuit filed last week that a CVS employee stole his winning $1 million Illinois Lottery scratch-off card.

Carlos Figueroa claims in the suit filed in Cook County Circuit Court that he bought the winning ticket on Oct. 30 from a CVS Pharmacy in Waukegan. The address of the store was not immediately available.

The suit states that Figueroa said he purchased the "Merry Millionaire" instant scratch-off through a vending machine that had cut it in half due to a malfunction. (Full text of the lawsuit can be found in the Related Links section below.)

Figueroa then claims that he was "coerced" by a CVS employee into handing him half of the ticket under the ruse of checking if it was a winner.

Figueroa alleges that about 20 minutes later, the employee handed him back half of a different lottery ticket that was not a winner. He said he made repeated demands at the store for the return of his winning ticket.

Figueroa is hoping for a temporary restraining order and injunction against the Illinois Lottery Board to prevent it from paying out winnings to the CVS employee.

"(Figueroa) is in need of immediate relief in that unless the (CVS employee) and the Illinois Lottery Board is restrained... he will suffer immediate and irreparable harm," the lawsuit states.

Attempts to reach CVS representatives and Illinois Lottery officials about the lawsuit were not successful.

Figueroa is also pursuing an order for the lottery board to recognize him as the rightful owner of the ticket.

It is unclear why he filed the lawsuit in Cook County rather than in Lake County, but his complaint states CVS does business in Chicago. A court hearing on the case has been set for March 19.

Chicago Tribune

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14 comments. Last comment 4 years ago by Stack47.
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casper wyoming
United States
Member #136339
December 9, 2012
105 Posts
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instant scratch-off through a vending machine that had cut it in half due to a malfunction.

 

Oh great here we go again. He is screwed. The lottery is going to spin this so they are not at fault.

 

It is unclear why he filed the lawsuit in Cook County rather than in Lake County

 

Watch the judge will throw out the lawsuit saying it is in the wrong county. What if lake county does not have a court that handles things like this.

    Avatar
    * In hot pursuit of $ *
    White Shores- California
    United States
    Member #136471
    December 12, 2012
    6758 Posts
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    Carlos is ready to do battle : got himself a lawyer. He's got exhibits, probably has a portion of the original ticket as well. Carlos is taking this serious.So far Kelly has nothing, he's presented nothing. By all accounts, Carlos is loaded for bear. Should be an interesting case.On paper : Round one to Carlos, for preparedness.

     * I'm still waiting to find out what happened to the case of the dad sending his underage kid in to a store to purchase a million dollar plus winning scratcher ticket..

     * Voice of Reason *   

    * People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it- George Bernard Shaw.

      Avatar
      Wyomissing, PA
      United States
      Member #161043
      November 15, 2014
      481 Posts
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      The article doesn't make clear whether the Illinois Lottery initially accepted the million dollar claim. If yes, that raises some questions. 1. Why would they accept a claim for a ticket that's cut in half. 2. Did they acknowledge the instant ticket machine malfunctioned. 3. Why didn't they investigate the sale further, such as viewing video - many lotteries do for top prize winners, especially when there are suspected irregularities.

      Again, this illustrates why lottery retailers and its employees should not be permitted to buy / play tickets at their own location(s). Lotteries, by and large, seemingly don't care. Shame, since that one change alone would eliminate much of these problems.

      Assuming the IL Lottery initially accepted the claim, the lawsuit likely has merit and it will be up to the court to decide who gets the winnings.

      The CA underage winner case (father sending kid in to cash winners for more tickets) is a whole different matter. From all indications, that lawsuit is extremely unlikely to be successful due to the seemingly iron-clad CA Lottery rules regarding underage gambling.

        Avatar
        NY
        United States
        Member #23834
        October 16, 2005
        4497 Posts
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        "Why would they accept a claim for a ticket that's cut in half."

        The ticket wasn't printed in error and doesn't have any other original defect that should make it invalid. It's just a winning ticket that was damaged, so the only issue should be whether or not it can be validated despite the damage. If half of a ticket is enough to establish that it's a winner I don't see any logical reason for denying payment other than the possibility that the rules would let them deny it.

        Based on the claims in the complaint it sounds like the CVS employee only has one half of the ticket, so at the very least the lottery should be doing an investigation before paying anybody. The complaint also says that the ticket "came in two halves", so the customer presumably got, and still has the other half. That probably means he's got a pretty good case since his argument for why the employee has half of the ticket is probably better than any argument the employee can come up with about why the customer would have half of a ticket belonging to the employee.

          LiveInGreenBay's avatar - driver
          Green Bay
          United States
          Member #169383
          October 15, 2015
          2756 Posts
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          Solomon would give each of them 500K.  Case closed.

          Never give up.  Banana

            SMS1989's avatar - Lottery-002.jpg
            New Member
            Charleston, SC
            United States
            Member #185689
            November 14, 2017
            9 Posts
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            Interested to see how this one turns out. People really need to check their own tickets. I would never let anyone coerce me into handing them my ticket damaged or not. I think he has a decent case. When lottery officials investigate they will see what transpired on the tape. Unless that tape has somehow been deleted. How else would the employee think they could get away with this? I am amazed that people still play the lottery in Illinois. Didn't they have trouble with payouts to winners?

              Avatar
              Roslindale, MA
              United States
              Member #5377
              July 1, 2004
              142 Posts
              Offline

              Solomon would give each of them 500K.  Case closed.

              If Solomon was an Illinois Lottery official he'd find a way to say neither gets the money.

                Gambler4Life's avatar - Lottery-011.jpg
                Texas
                United States
                Member #151475
                January 18, 2014
                60 Posts
                Offline

                Interested to see how this one turns out. People really need to check their own tickets. I would never let anyone coerce me into handing them my ticket damaged or not. I think he has a decent case. When lottery officials investigate they will see what transpired on the tape. Unless that tape has somehow been deleted. How else would the employee think they could get away with this? I am amazed that people still play the lottery in Illinois. Didn't they have trouble with payouts to winners?

                You got that right! If someone else ever has my lottery tickets other than a Lottery Agent at the Claims Office(s), I won't even fathom. Just know that my tickets, scratch-offs included, are signed before I leave the store. You will NEVER. find an unsigned lottery ticket on me. Also, I only throw away my non-winning tickets at home and keep them in a TX Lottery bag for up to a Year before tossing them out. TAKE PRECAUTIONS!!!  I treat MY tickets like MONEY when I purchase them because I expect to WIN, WIN, WIN!!!!

                  Avatar
                  Kentucky
                  United States
                  Member #32651
                  February 14, 2006
                  9322 Posts
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                  Figueroa then claims that he was "coerced" by a CVS employee into handing him half of the ticket under the ruse of checking if it was a winner

                  If he had both halves or just the bottom half, he could still scratch the bar code and scan the ticket. I'd have to be "coerced" at the business end of a gun before I'd hand over a lottery ticket possibly worth $1 million. 

                  Just a guess, but it doesn't look like Figueroa is very lottery savvy.

                    Avatar
                    * In hot pursuit of $ *
                    White Shores- California
                    United States
                    Member #136471
                    December 12, 2012
                    6758 Posts
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                    Figueroa then claims that he was "coerced" by a CVS employee into handing him half of the ticket under the ruse of checking if it was a winner

                    If he had both halves or just the bottom half, he could still scratch the bar code and scan the ticket. I'd have to be "coerced" at the business end of a gun before I'd hand over a lottery ticket possibly worth $1 million. 

                    Just a guess, but it doesn't look like Figueroa is very lottery savvy.

                    Let's muddy the water a bit Stack. Let's for argument sake say, that Carlos is an illegal immigrant, and has now hit it big. Besides being non lottery savvy, he's reaching out to Kelly and asking " for help"- check my ticket and tell me if l won? Perhaps Kelly is hoping for ICE to swoop down and round up Carlos. Thing is, Carlos wouldn't mind being picked up, just as long as he knows he has major walking around money.

                    Just saying.....

                     * Voice of Reason *   

                    * People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it- George Bernard Shaw.

                      JAMORA's avatar - ladyclover
                      NC
                      United States
                      Member #164391
                      February 28, 2015
                      3835 Posts
                      Offline

                      "Why would they accept a claim for a ticket that's cut in half."

                      The ticket wasn't printed in error and doesn't have any other original defect that should make it invalid. It's just a winning ticket that was damaged, so the only issue should be whether or not it can be validated despite the damage. If half of a ticket is enough to establish that it's a winner I don't see any logical reason for denying payment other than the possibility that the rules would let them deny it.

                      Based on the claims in the complaint it sounds like the CVS employee only has one half of the ticket, so at the very least the lottery should be doing an investigation before paying anybody. The complaint also says that the ticket "came in two halves", so the customer presumably got, and still has the other half. That probably means he's got a pretty good case since his argument for why the employee has half of the ticket is probably better than any argument the employee can come up with about why the customer would have half of a ticket belonging to the employee.

                      I Agree!       excellent post!

                      "Don't waste time, it's the stuff life's made of..."

                      VTs are like looking for a sewing kit in a haystack as opposed to looking for the needle.

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                        Northern IL
                        United States
                        Member #171100
                        December 31, 2015
                        147 Posts
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                        I am having trouble believing this story

                        The part about being coerced into having ticket checked and waiting 20 minutes seems absurd especially since scanners are there for customers to check tickets at counters and if worker checks it behind counter he would be able to watch it and it wouldn't take 20 minutes

                        Something isn't right with this story

                          Avatar
                          * In hot pursuit of $ *
                          White Shores- California
                          United States
                          Member #136471
                          December 12, 2012
                          6758 Posts
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                          I am having trouble believing this story

                          The part about being coerced into having ticket checked and waiting 20 minutes seems absurd especially since scanners are there for customers to check tickets at counters and if worker checks it behind counter he would be able to watch it and it wouldn't take 20 minutes

                          Something isn't right with this story

                          I Agree!.. which is why l am going with the illegal alien bit. It may sound far fetched, but the possibility exists. 

                           * Voice of Reason *   

                          * People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it- George Bernard Shaw.

                            Avatar
                            Kentucky
                            United States
                            Member #32651
                            February 14, 2006
                            9322 Posts
                            Offline

                            Let's muddy the water a bit Stack. Let's for argument sake say, that Carlos is an illegal immigrant, and has now hit it big. Besides being non lottery savvy, he's reaching out to Kelly and asking " for help"- check my ticket and tell me if l won? Perhaps Kelly is hoping for ICE to swoop down and round up Carlos. Thing is, Carlos wouldn't mind being picked up, just as long as he knows he has major walking around money.

                            Just saying.....

                            The last time I looked, Carlos hasn't collected a dime and if ICE swoops down, he'll be walking around with whatever he had. The ticket was cut in half horizonally and the bar code is on the bottom. Carlos could have scanned it and then taken it to lottery headquarters.

                            If Carlos still has the top half of the ticket and it shows a $1 million winner, all bets are off.