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Lottery Ticket Holder Three Days Late, $5.8 Million Short

October 18, 1996

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) _ The $5.8 million question: Why did Clarence Jackson Jr. wait until three days after his winning lottery ticket expired to try to collect the jackpot?

After all, there was a year to collect, since the winning number was drawn Oct. 13, 1995. The lucky ticket expired at 11:59 p.m. Sunday.

Connecticut lottery officials said Jackson, 23, wouldn’t tell them why he waited until Wednesday afternoon to show up at lottery headquarters with a lawyer to see if the ticket was still valid.

Jackson did not want to talk, said a man who answered the phone at the Jackson home. The lawyer was unavailable for comment.

Omar Tork, a convenience store owner in Hamden, said a man walked into the store Wednesday with the winning ticket. The man, Tork said, claimed his father had purchased the ticket but has been too ill to collect.

The man also said he found the ticket Wednesday after hearing about the unclaimed jackpot, Tork said.

The prize was the seventh unclaimed jackpot in the Lotto game’s 13-year history. A man who tried to collect an expired $100,000 prize in 1993 lost his lawsuit.

Otho Brown, the lottery’s chief executive, said the $5.8 million would be held in an unclaimed prize fund until the case was resolved.

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