• BREAKING NEWS ABC shows live and on-demand -- Download the WATCH ABC app!

Mega Millions winning ticket sold in Pico Rivera

May 5, 2010 12:54:19 AM PDT
A Pico Rivera couple bought the only winning ticket in Tuesday's Mega Millions lottery drawing worth $266 million. The ticket matching all six winning numbers -- 9, 21, 31, 36, 43 and mega-number 8 -- was sold at L&L Hawaiian Barbecue at 8760 Washington Blvd.

The man was picking up dinner at the barbecue restaurant Tuesday night and along with his food he bought just one lotto ticket, which turned out to be the winning ticket. He had recently lost his job and his wife reportedly works at NBC4.

"We're so happy for them. We're elated; it's just unbelievable," said the woman's mother.

The $266 million jackpot was the eighth-largest in the history of the game, which began in 2002 and is now played in 38 states and the District of Columbia.

March 12 was the last time someone picked all six numbers correctly in the Mega Millions drawing, and over the past seven weeks, the jackpot kept snowballing.

According to California Lottery spokesman Alex Traverso, L&L Hawaiian Barbecue will get $1 million, which is the maximum bonus a retailer can receive.

Danny He is one of three co-owners who will split the $1 million check. He said when he got the call Tuesday night, he was shocked.

"First reaction was 'What? Are you kidding?'" he said. He said he's not sure what he'll do with the money yet.

Lottery officials said the couple has not yet come forward to claim the jackpot..

However, the winner has a year to turn in the ticket, then 60 days to tell lottery officials how he or she wants the money.

It can be paid in 26 equal payments of $10.2 million or in a lump sum of about $165 million, minus federal taxes, said lottery spokeswoman Cathy Doyle Johnston.

There were 28 other tickets that had five correct numbers out of six picked. Seven of those were from California. Because of state rules in California, those partial winners are worth nearly $180,000. In the other 37 states and the District of Colombia, they are worth $250,000.

The odds of matching all five numbers and the Mega number drawn in Tuesday's multistate game was 1 in more than 175 million. The next Mega Millions jackpot will be $12 million.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


Load Comments