Single Mom Wins Lottery With a Trick We Could All Use

lotteryThe word "accident" always sounds like such a bad thing, doesn't it? Not for a single mom in California! Thuan Le accidentally put too much money into a self-service lottery machine last week. The accident won the mother of four $14 million in the California SuperLotto Plus drawing.

Could this be a sign? Is this the way to win the lottery?


By accident?

Go ahead, laugh, but the proof is in the pudding. This lucky single mom is not the first to get lucky with a happy accident.

Le apparently meant to put $4 into the machine at a CVS. She usually buys $4 worth of Powerball tickets. Instead she slipped in an extra dollar, and presto, change-o, she's rich! And she's not alone:

1. Last year Virginia Fike of Virginia thought she was buying a Powerball ticket, but it turns out she bought two. Good thing too, because BOTH tickets had five matching numbers! She became the the first person to win two $1 million Powerball games in one state lottery drawing, taking home $2 million!

2. Kathy Scruggs asked a clerk for a Mega Millions ticket last fall, but the clerk printed out a MegaMillions and a Powerball ticket. The Georgia woman decided to take them both, and it was the latter that matched all of the winning numbers in a multistate Powerball drawing. Scruggs, who'd just lost a job as a seasonal worker, walked away with $25 million!

3. Lisa Robinson usually plays the $2 Cash Word game in the Michigan Lottery, but when a clerk gave her a $3 ticket, it turned out to be the best thing that had ever happened to her. That $3 ticket was worth $100,000.

4. Scott Bennett of New Hampshire was another beneficiary of a cashier mistake. He asked for one Tri-State Megabucks ticket and one Lucky for Life ticket but got two Megabucks tickets instead. That second ticket earned the father of three the $2.1 million Megabucks jackpot.

5. Sometimes the clerks screw up ... sometimes the clerks get lucky. Charanjit Kaur of New York accidentally sold a $10 Megaplier ticket in 2011 to a customer who wanted a $5 Quick Pick. The customer decided he didn't want the more expensive ticket. Little did he know it was a winner. It netted Kaur $1 million!

6. Naomi Mauller might have screwed up when she entered numbers for a customer's Mega Millions ticket back in 2010, but it was a good thing for her ... and the customer! The Ohio woman bought the faulty ticket, and the customer got a new one. Both ended up winners, netting $250,000 per ticket.

7. The ticket Pamela Ivey tried to buy would have cost her $5 and netted her $250,000 in a Kentucky Mega Millions drawing. Instead a clerk sold her a $10 multiplier ticket ... which raked in $1 million!

8. He's kept his name out of the papers, but a Michigan man who pulled a $20 out of his wallet, thinking it was a $10, is set for life. Forced to spend that extra $10, he bought a Cash for Life ticket that earned him $4 million.

Hmm. Sounds like the way to win the lottery is by not really trying! Could it be as simple as taking advantage of the mistakes?

Have you had a lottery screw-up? What happened?


Image via Robert S. Donovan/Flickr

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