Oregon man’s lottery claim bogus, state says

Associated Press

SALEM, Ore. — The Oregon State Lottery has refused to pay an $8.35 million jackpot to a Portland man who says he holds the winning ticket.

State police say the ticket held by Chris Reamer was purchased more than three hours after the drawing. The Marion County district attorney’s office is considering whether to prosecute the case as attempted fraud.

But Reamer insists he is the rightful winner of the $8.34 million, and has filed a breach of contract suit against the Oregon Lottery Commission.

Reamer says he bought the ticket on June 17 at a 7-Eleven Store. When the next day’s $8.35 million Megabucks drawing was held, the six numbers Reamer picked came up, his complaint says.

Reamer’s wife, Tanya, and father-in-law Gilbert Brown brought the ticket to lottery headquarters in Salem the next day.

But lottery officials say that’s not the way it happened.

They charge that after the winning numbers for June 18 were drawn, Reamer entered those numbers onto a play slip, purchased a Megabucks ticket, went to lottery headquarters saying he’d bought the ticket on June 17 and he was there to claim the $8.35 million Megabucks prize.

Investigators discovered the ticket had been purchased not on June 17 but at 11:10 p.m. the following day — more than three hours after the drawing, lottery spokesman David Hooper said.

Hooper said the ticket purchased by Reamer was actually for June 20, and it was identified as such. The ticket also stated the Megabucks jackpot for June 18.

Reamer’s attorney, Karen Thompson, insists that her client purchased the ticket on the day he claims.

She contends that the lottery computer system may have made a mistake by spitting out a June 20 ticket, rather than one for June 18.

"Surely there could be something wrong with the machine," she said.

Copyright ©2001 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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