Powerball Winner in South Carolina, Who Remains Anonymous, Bags $400M

Tuesday, 24 Sep 2013 12:13 PM

By Michael Mullins

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The Powerball winner of last week's $400 million jackpot in South Carolina will remain anonymous.

The decision was announced Monday by lottery officials, after the lucky individual claimed their prize, The Associated Press reported.

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Under South Carolina state law, lottery officials are not required to release the name of a winner if that person requests that their identity remain a secret.

In contrast, the overwhelming majority of states require that the winner's identity and the city where they live to be released.

The other states that allow for jackpot winners to remain anonymous are Kansas, Delaware, Maryland, North Dakota, and Ohio, according to Powerball's website.

The winning Powerball ticket was purchased at a Murphy Express gas station in Lexington, S.C., within hours of the drawing Wednesday night. It was one of 356 tickets sold at that location that day, according to lottery officials.

Though the officials would not release the winner's name or address, the organization reported that the winner purchased the ticket after stopping at the local gas station convenience store to buy a package of hot dog buns at his wife's request.

Despite the fact that Murphy Express does not sell hot dog buns, the stop was not a total waste, considering the winner noticed the $400 million Powerball sign and decided to throw down $20 for 10 tickets. The rest is history.

One person who could potentially unearth the identity of the mystery Powerball winner is store manager Keith Wedmore.

In an interview with USA Today, Wedmore acknowledged that he could review the store's video camera tapes to put a face to the time at which the ticket was purchased, but he said he wouldn't out of respect for the winner's privacy.

"We're curious, but to me, they have a right to remain private," Wedmore said. "We just want to be decent about it."

"I hope it's someone local and a regular, but we have a lot of people who come in passing through on Interstate 20," Wedmore added.

For selling the winning ticket, the Murphy Express gas station will receive $50,000 from the lottery, while the state of South Carolina will receive approximately $15 million in taxes, USA Today noted.

The total amount the winner has received is not clear, as the state lottery does not reveal whether the winner opted for the $233 million lump sum payout or the 30 annual payments of $13.3 million.

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The $400 million ticket is the largest ever sold in South Carolina.

The odds of winning the Powerball are 1 in 175.2 million, according to Powerball's website.

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