Someone is holding, likely with trembling hands, the most valuable lottery ticket ever sold in Broward County.
It’s worth $47 million, and its numbers match the 10-12-23-34-38-53 drawn Wednesday night in the Florida Lotto.
In the 26 years since the Florida Lotto began, and in the five years since Powerball and, later, Mega Millions arrived in our state, no single ticket had hit a jackpot that large here.
The ticket was sold at the Stop N Shop convenience store at 2960 Taft St., in Hollywood, just east of I-95. A man who identified himself as “Morrocco”cq said he bought the store about two months ago. The owner was thrilled, because he’ll get a $180,000 commission.
“Pop it off, baby,” said Morrocco, wearing a red T-shirt, sunglasses, ponytail and imperial growing under his lower lip. On Thursday morning, many of his customers bought single beers for immediate consumption, and Morrocco
He motioned toward a nearby mobile-home park. “I hope the winner is from over there,” he said. “The money could really help someone out.”
Palm Beach County’s largest Lotto payout was $53 million on a ticket sold in 2000 in Jupiter. Miami-Dade County had a single $56 million winner in 2001. South Floridians have gotten a piece of larger jackpots — in 1999, a Pompano man bought one of three winning tickets, splitting $81 million — but no single ticket sold in Broward has netted a prize this large. Even the one Broward Powerball winner, a Hollywood woman, bought her $73.8 million in Royal Palm Beach in 2010.
This jackpot had been building since Jan. 18. The Lotto went 34 draws without a winner, one shy of the game’s current record, which was set last year.
The winner can take a cash option of $31.6 million, and has 180 days to claim the prize at Florida Lottery headquarters in Tallahassee.
The largest Florida Lotto jackpot won by a single winner was $81.6 million, in 2000, in New Port Richey. The biggest shared jackpot came in 1990, when six players split $106.5 million.
The Florida Lotto jackpot now resets to $2 million for Saturday night's drawing.