Getting rich in the lottery is a dream for many, but it is not without its risks. There are a number of stories about people who have blown their winnings on expensive gifts, cars, legal entanglements, and partying.
In 1996, Jeffrey Dampier won $20 million in the Illinois lottery. He was a popcorn business owner and also had a secret affair with his wife’s sister. He was charged with tax fraud by the IRS. After he split with his wife, he checked into a mental institution. But after he won the jackpot, he began to gamble. He also blew his winnings on luxury goods, including exotic cars, a house in Brick, New Jersey, and a private school for his daughter.
Jack Whittaker won a $314 million Powerball jackpot in 2002. His outsized personality and cowboy hat were a draw, but his life turned to turmoil. He lost his granddaughter to cancer, his daughter to drugs, and his house to fire. He also donated money to charity. He enjoyed giving out his winnings to strangers and diner waitresses. He even gave his winnings to a local strip club.
Evelyn Basehore won $1.4 million in 1985. She then spent a significant portion of her lottery winnings on gambling. She eventually lost all of her winnings. She moved into a trailer park in 2000. She then went into debt. She eventually blew her money on a home and a vacation. She then closed her restaurant, which forced her to close within a few years.