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$26 million lottery ticket may have been destroyed in wash

A $26 million lottery ticket was sold in Norwalk, California about six months ago. Regulars and workers at the gas station that sold the ticket believe it was accidentally destroyed in the wash by a woman whose coworker bought it for her.

CBS Los Angeles spoke with a regular named Bobby Henley who says he ran into the unidentified woman. She had until Thursday to come forward and claim her prize.

“Her clothes were washed and when she pulled it out, it was all crumpled up into little pieces and she said she frantically tried to put it back together, but she couldn’t,” Henley told CBS Los Angeles.

Workers say they’ve seen the woman on security video that was given to California Lottery officials, but the footage is not enough to verify that she was the winner.

Officials said she must either present the ticket or have photographs of the front and back of the ticket in order to claim her prize. She may be able to file a claim for an investigation, however.

The store that sold the ticket received a $130,000 bonus. The prize money, which went unclaimed, would go to California schools in the form a $19.7 million cash sum.

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