Iowa chef wins $1m lottery after store clerk’s error

An Iowa man won $1m on the state’s lottery and came within one number of winning a share of a $20m jackpot after a store clerk made a mistake with his ticket.

Josh Buster, 40, said he bought the Mega Millions ticket on Friday in West Burlington and believed an error was responsible for the win, according to an Iowa Lottery press release.

He said the clerk at an MK Mini Mart printed only one play on his ticket when he had asked for five. The clerk then printed four other plays on a second ticket.

“I feel like that changed the numbers that I would have gotten if he had put them all on one instead of making that mistake,” Mr Buster, a prep chef, said on Sunday.

He said he checked his winning ticket before heading into work on Saturday and “freaked out” when his lottery app told him he had won $1m.

“I always keep my tickets in the console of my car. And I scanned it in the car and freaked out and ran back inside,” said Mr Buster. “I don’t usually have good luck, so I thought it was a mistake and there was going to be an error.”

He then double-checked the winning numbers online and said: “So I Googled the lottery numbers to make sure I had the right ones, and I did! And then the rest of the day, I’m just waiting to wake up from a dream.”

On Sunday, he collected his winnings from Iowa Lottery’s headquarters in Clive and was pictured holding the cheque.

According to Iowa Lottery, the wining numbers on Mr Buster’s ticket were one Mega Ball away from a $20m jackpot, which was won by a ticket holder in Tennessee.

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