Mega Millions: Ticket in Illinois wins second largest Mega Millions jackpot of approximately $1.28 billion



CNN

The hunt for second largest Mega Millions the jackpot is over – as a single ticket claimed the entire estimated $1.28 billion.

A ticket purchased in the Chicago area won the top prize in Friday night’s draw, according to the illinois lotterysecuring the third-largest jackpot of any US lottery game and ending a buildup that began when Mega Millions last draw of a jackpot winner in mid-April.

The winning ticket was purchased at a Speedway gas station in Des Plaines, about a 20-mile drive northwest of Chicago, the Illinois Lottery said. Information about the ticket purchaser was not immediately available Saturday morning.

If the holder chooses a lump sum payment option, the ticket will earn an estimated one-time payment of $742.2 million. Otherwise, the prize of approximately $1.28 billion will be spread over annual payments.

“We are thrilled to have witnessed one of the biggest jackpot wins in Mega Millions history,” said Pat McDonald, Senior Director of the Mega Millions Consortium, said in a press release on Saturday. “We can’t wait to find out who won and we look forward to congratulating the winner soon.”

Friday night’s winning numbers were 13, 36, 45, 57, 67 and a Mega Ball of 14. The next draw is Tuesday at 11 p.m. ET.

Some other ticket holders also picked up major prizes on Friday.

Twenty-six tickets won a secondary prize of at least $1 million because they matched the first five numbers.

Six of the 26 tickets won $2 million because buyers not only matched the first five numbers, but also paid an additional $1 to activate the game’s “multiplier,” which boosts non-jackpot prizes.

One of the 26 tickets, sold in California, did not have the multiplier but still earned over $4.2 million, according to state lottery officials. It’s because all prices in California should be based on sales and number of winners instead of a fixed amount.

The 20 “Match 5” winners without the multiplier were sold in California; Florida (two); Georgia (two); Illinois; Kentucky; Louisiana; Michigan; Minnesota (two); North Carolina (two); New Hampshire (two); New York; Oklahoma; Pennsylvania; Texas (two); and Wisconsin.

The six $2 million tickets were sold in Arizona; Florida (three); Iowa and Pennsylvania, according to Mega Millions.

The jackpot had been on the rise since mid-April when the jackpot was hit in consecutive draws on April 12 and April 15. Since then, no ticket in the bi-weekly draws has matched all six numbers – which is difficult. The odds of winning the jackpot are 1 in 302,575,350.

The biggest Mega Millions jackpot of $1.537 billion was won by a one ticket sold in South Carolina in 2018. It’s the second-largest jackpot of any US lottery game, and it’s the biggest lottery prize in the world won by a single ticket, according to Mega Millions.

The biggest jackpot of any US lottery game was $1.586 billion – a Powerball prize from January 13, 2016, shared by winners in California, Florida and Tennessee.

On Friday night, the Mega Millions website became inaccessible for several minutes after the draw. Lottery jackpots start at $20 million and increase based on game sales and interest rates, according to its website.

Mega Millions tickets are sold in 45 states, Washington, DC and the US Virgin Islands, where the draws take place Tuesdays and Fridays at 11 p.m. ET. Tickets are sold online in Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, New Hampshire, North Carolina, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Virginia and DC, but the purchaser must be in this State.

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