Man Sues After Powerball Win Labeled As ‘Mistake’

John Cheeks, a resident of the nation’s capital, has filed a lawsuit against the DC Lottery and Powerball, claiming that the latter two entities accidentally released his winning numbers. Claiming he had won $340 million in the Powerball jackpot, Cheeks is suing for $340 million plus interest that would have accumulated on the prize each day.

According to Powerball and Taoti Enterprises, a lottery contractor located in Washington, DC, the misunderstanding was caused by a technological glitch. According to a Taoti employee, the website was being tested by a quality assurance team on January 6, 2023. That day, the website “accidentally” displayed a set of test Powerball numbers that matched Cheeks’ numbers. For three days up to January 9, you could see the numbers on the website, but they didn’t correspond with the most recent lottery drawing.

Among the eight claims Mr. Cheeks is now pursuing in court are fraud, emotional distress infliction, carelessness, and breach of contract. According to Richard Evans’s attorney, Cheeks should get the whole payout since his numbers were among the winning ones. Otherwise, he has a case for damages due to the lottery’s carelessness in publishing incorrect numbers.

Powerball and the DC Lottery have admitted to making mistakes, but the case raises serious questions about the honesty and transparency of lottery operations. The need to maintain game fairness and the presence of prior cases were emphasized by Cheek’s counsel, Richard W. Evans. A lottery contractor in Iowa released the wrong numbers in November, but they said it was just a human mistake.

Every Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday, Powerball performs draws. The chances of winning the top prize are 1 in 292 million.

Defendants Taoti Enterprises, the Multi-State Lottery Association, and Powerball have been mum since their initial statement of no wrongdoing.

On Friday, the case’s preliminary hearing will take place.