4 months later, victor of $1.5 billion Mega Millions jackpot claims prize

WINNER! South Carolina's $1.5B lottery winner finally steps forward

The person who won $1.5 billion in a Mega Millions drawing previous year has finally stepped forward to claim their prize over four months after the drawing.

A lottery commission statement said the person submitting the claim for what was the second-largest lottery in USA history has chosen the cash option, a one-time payment of almost $878,000,000.

It was quite possibly the biggest lottery mystery in SC history.

The payout is the largest to a single victor in United States history, officials said. "We respect the winner's decision to remain anonymous, and we will honor the winner's wishes".

The victor told the lottery commission they let another customer buy a Mega Millions ticket before they did at the store last October, according to a press release.

"A simple act of kindness led to an fantastic outcome", the statement said.

The payout climbed to $1.5 billion after three months and 25 draws passed without a ticket that matched all six numbers.

How long would you wait to claim the winning lottery ticket for a $1.5 billion jackpot?

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KC Mart in Simpsonville will be given $50,000 for selling the winning ticket, and the state will receive $61 million in income taxes from the victor.

There was a 180 day limit on claiming the prize, so the victor was still well within the time limit when they came forward.

Inside Edition went to Simpsonville, South Carolina, where the ticket was purchased, to ask around about the mysterious victor.

Some theorized that the victor was on the run from police and feared a background check if he or she won.

The convenience store owner, Chirag Patal, now gets a $70,000 commission for selling the winning ticket.

Others speculated the winning ticket had been purchased by an office pool and was now the subject of litigation.

Also not surprising, the victor is taking the one-time cash payout of $877,784,124.

If the money hadn't been claimed, it would have been divided among all 44 states that take part in the Mega Millions contest, the newspaper said. "Obviously, South Carolina will reap the benefits of that", House Ways and Means Chairman Murrell Smith, R-Sumter, told The Post and Courier.

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