Mark Manuel

Mark Manuel

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If You Win Tonight's $1.9 Billion Powerball Jackpot, Be Careful!

Powerball

Photo: Getty Images

It’s hard to imagine anyone who didn’t have stars in their eyes over the weekend as they dreamt big about winning the $1.6-billion Power Ball jackpot. The numbers were: 28-45-53-56-69 and the Power Ball was 20…and you didn’t win. In fact, no one did…so tonight’s jackpot is up to a record-breaking estimated $1.9-billion.

For most of us, that kind of money sounds game-changing and like an easy path to easy street. For past lottery winners, things didn’t necessarily work out that way...

  • Lara and Roger Griffiths ($2.76-million) – Before the money, they “never fought.” After the windfall, “a freak fire gutted their (underinsured) house” and Lara confronted Roger over emails with another woman. Their marriage ended.
  • Bud Post ($16.2M) – Within in a year of winning, he was reportedly “1 million in debt,” a former girlfriend successfully sued him for a third of his winnings, and his brother put out a hit on him…hoping he’d inherit the money.
  • Evelyn Adams ($5.4M) – Was said to have “gambled it all away” in Atlantic City.
  • Gerald Muswagon ($1M) – Blew it all on a party pad, gifts for friends, and a failed logging business. He eventually took a gig doing heavy lifting, and later committed suicide.
  • Suzanne Mullins ($4.2M) – Split the annual payments with her daughter and husband, giving her $47K a year, and found herself in debt after taking on her uninsured son-in-law’s $1 million medical expenses.
  • America Lopes ($38.5M) – Quit his job, claiming he needed foot surgery. In reality, he won the lottery, and didn’t want to split it with his coworkers. The cat got out of the bag, and he was sued…and had to split it all.
  • Ibi Roncaioli ($5M) – Won, but didn’t tell her husband how she was going to spent it. Then, he reportedly found out that she gave $2 million to “a secret child she had with another man.” He then poisoned her with painkillers.
  • Michael Carroll ($15M) – His crack, party, and hooker habits left him broke within five years.
  • Andrew Jackson Whittaker, Jr ($315M) – He walked away with $114 million after taxes. Had hundreds of thousands stolen from his truck and was sued by a casino after bouncing a $1.5-million check. The cash was reportedly gone after four years.
  • Billy Bob Harrel, Jr ($31M) – Reportedly, “couldn’t say no” to those in need of a handout. He eventually divorced and died by suicide.
  • Denise Rossi ($1.3M) – Hit her hubby with a surprise divorce, but didn’t tell him about the money. When he found out two years later, he sued…and took every penny.
  • Janite Lee ($18M) – Filed for bankruptcy after blowing it all on charity and political contributions…along with gambling and credit card debt.

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