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$10M Virginia Lottery Prize Goes To Haymarket Man

Patch logo Patch 3 days ago Mark Hand
a person standing in front of a store: Joseph Heaton, who won $10 million in the Virginia Lottery, showed up Friday to claim his prize at the Sudley Shell in Manassas where he had bought the winning ticket. © Mark Hand/Patch Joseph Heaton, who won $10 million in the Virginia Lottery, showed up Friday to claim his prize at the Sudley Shell in Manassas where he had bought the winning ticket.

MANASSAS, VA — A Haymarket man won $10 million, the largest prize awarded by the Virginia Lottery for a Scratcher ticket. The winning ticket was bought for $30 at a Shell gas station in Manassas.

After a week filled with clouds and rain in the Manassas area, the sun finally came out on Friday for Joseph Heaton to claim his huge Virginia Lottery Prize. The Shell gas station where Heaton bought his ticket is located at 7205 Sudley Road in Manassas.

After scratching the Extreme Millions ticket, Heaton walked up to the store clerk.

"A winner?" the clerk asked. Heaton just smiled. The clerk tried to guess the amount, but Heaton kept saying higher. He finally had to tell the clerk the amount. "I couldn't believe it," Heaton said. "My head has been spinning ever since."

Heaton said the first person he contacted after learning he had won the $10 million prize was his accountant. He wanted to decided how to accept the prize: the full $10 million over 30 years or a one-time cash option of $6,570,302. Deaton, a middle-aged man, decided to go with the one-time cash option.

The Sundley Shell station receives a $50,000 bonus from the Virginia Lottery for selling the winning ticket. Michael Zhang, the owner of the Shell, said the largest amount someone had won in the Virginia Lottery at his store was $5,000.

Heaton bought his winning ticket in Prince William County, which received more than $39.7 million in Lottery funds for K-12 public education last fiscal year, according to the Virginia Lottery.

All Virginia Lottery profits are used for K-12 public education in Virginia. In fiscal year 2019, the Virginia Lottery had sales of more than $2.3 billion. Of this total, the Lottery generated nearly $650 million, or 28.3 percent of sales, for K-12 public education. This number represents about 10 percent of the state’s entire budget for education.

About 61 percent went back to players in the form of prizes, 5.6 percent went to the retailers who sell Virginia Lottery tickets, and 5 percent went to operational expenses.

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