The lure of the lottery is that it will change your life overnight. But what if winning made your life a living hell? As any of these winners-turned-losers would tell you, winning isn’t everything. Especially when you don’t have a clue what to do with that money.
1| Michael Carroll had a fetish for hookers | $ 15 m
Michael Carroll was at his peak when he won Britain’s £9.7 million ($15 million) jackpot in 2002, The Week reports. But a penchant for life in the fast lane—cocaine, parties, hookers and cars—put him back at square one in five years. Last we heard, the ex-garbageman was hoping to get his old job back.
2| Tonda Lynn Dickerson was forced to pay gift tax | $ 10 m
A former Waffle House waitress named Tonda Lynn Dickerson got served a big plate of karma when she refused to split her winnings with ex-colleagues and was forced to pay the tax man $1,119,347.90. How did it happen? Dickerson placed her winnings in a corporation and granted her family 51 percent of the stock—qualifying her for the tax.
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3| Evelyn Adams gambled it all away in Atlantic City | $ 5.4 m
Against all odds, in the mid-1980s Adams won the lottery twice, once in 1985 and again in 1986. The New Jersey native won a cool $5.4 million, but AskMen.com reports she gambled it away at Atlantic City. Today she resides in a trailer park.
4| Jack Whittaker, gambler extraordinaire | $ 315 m
This West Virginia businessman won $315 million in the Powerball lottery in 2002, the largest jackpot ever from a single ticket in American history at the time. After being robbed of $545,000 in cash while at a strip club, Whittaker’s granddaughter and daughter were later found dead, and Whittaker was sued by Caesars Atlantic City casino for bouncing $1.5 million worth of checks to cover gambling losses.
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