Lottery officials says powerball will grow to whopping $1.3 billion as $950 million Powerball numbers are un-picked.
The jackpot-fixing scandal that rocked the lottery organization behind Powerball has done little to hold back interest in the game. Stores across the country sold more tickets than they have ever sold but did not produce a single ticket matching the winning powerball numbers.
Powerball sales doubled on Friday and tripled on Saturday. Powerball ticket sales usually average $1 million a day, they were selling at a rate of $2.8 million per hour.
Those sales have soared despite a scandal that rocked the organization that runs the game — a five-year-old investigation into jackpot fixing in one state that grew to include at least four others. In the end, a Multi-State Lottery Association security expert was convicted of fraud and sentenced to a decade in prison and the man who ran Powerball since it began was quietly put on leave.
The Powerball scandal that has been forgotten in the wake of Powerball fever.
December 2010: A man walked into a Quik Trip convenience store and bought what would become the winning ticket in a Hot Lotto draw with a $16.5 million jackpot. The prize was unclaimed for nearly a year.
November 2011: A Canadian man contacted the Iowa Lottery claiming to be the winner. Later, he said he was not the winner himself, but represented the anonymous winner.
December 2011: A New York lawyer came forward to claim the prize for a Belize-based trust. No one involved could provide the basic details of the winner, information required by Iowa law. Eventually, the attorney withdrew the claim to the jackpot and the money went back to the states where the tickets were sold.
So what happened?
Investigators never gave up on the curious case and, three years later, released surveillance footage of a hooded man buying the winning ticket in the hopes that someone would recognize him. Several people identified him as Edward Tipton, Multi-State Lottery Association’s former security director.