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News / Nation & World

Tiny LA store sells winning Powerball jackpot ticket

Prize is $1.08B; minimarket located near city’s Skid Row

By Associated Press
Published: July 20, 2023, 5:54pm
2 Photos
Lottery official Jerry Cisneros puts up a sign inside the Las Palmitas Mini Market where the winning Powerball lottery ticket was sold in downtown Los Angeles, Thursday, July 20, 2023.  The winning ticket for the Powerball jackpot is worth an estimated $1.08 billion and is the sixth largest in U.S. history and the third largest in the history of the game.
Lottery official Jerry Cisneros puts up a sign inside the Las Palmitas Mini Market where the winning Powerball lottery ticket was sold in downtown Los Angeles, Thursday, July 20, 2023. The winning ticket for the Powerball jackpot is worth an estimated $1.08 billion and is the sixth largest in U.S. history and the third largest in the history of the game. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez) (marcio jose sanchez/Associated Press) Photo Gallery

LOS ANGELES — A tiny neighborhood store in downtown Los Angeles sold the winning ticket for the Powerball jackpot worth an estimated $1.08 billion, the sixth largest in U.S. history and the third largest in the history of the game.

The winning numbers for Wednesday night’s drawing were: white balls 7, 10, 11, 13, 24 and red Powerball 24.

The winner can choose either the total jackpot paid out in yearly increments or a $558.1 million lump sum before taxes. Winners don’t have to come forward publicly but their names and the disposition of the money are public records, according to the California Lottery.

The winning ticket was sold at Las Palmitas Mini Market, which will receive a $1 million bonus from the lottery. The owner of the store is Maria Leticia Menjivar, lottery spokesperson Carolyn Becker said.

Lottery officials presented a giant symbolic check to the owner and her family, including her husband Navor Herrera, the manager, and hung signs saying “billionaire made here.”

Asked about the store’s million-dollar windfall, Herrera set his sights on the future.

“I have to make more bigger store, more items, good service for the people. That’s my thing now,” he said.

“The store is small” but the luck there is “big,” Herrera joked.

Located in the city’s Fashion District, the narrow minimarket is a few blocks from Skid Row’s scenes of homelessness and distress where thousands of people live in makeshift shanties that line entire blocks of the neighborhood.

The 107-block district is both a center of the West Coast apparel industry as well as a low-income area where small stores offer clothing, accessories and fabrics that spill onto sidewalks. Bargain-seekers flock to the district, but many storefronts are shuttered.

The winner must come forward to the California Lottery to claim the prize — and should consider hiring financial and legal advisers, Becker told reporters.

“And then we have to spend time vetting the winner to make sure it is the right person,” Becker said. “Integrity and transparency are incredibly important to us, so we will probably not know for months and months.”

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