Manuel Franco says he had a "lucky feeling" when he bought the winning ticket at the Speedway in New Berlin on March 27. At right is Peter Barca, state secretary of revenue, and at right is Cindy Polzin, state lottery director. Franco claimed the cash option payout of the prize, totaling approximately $477 million before taxes. The overall jackpot of the prize, drawn March 22, was $768,400.
A 24-year-old Wisconsin man stepped forward Tuesday to claim a $768 million Powerball prize, the nation's third-largest lottery jackpot, saying he "pretty much felt lucky" the day he bought his tickets and has been anxious that people want to steal his ticket.
Franco said he didn't know he was a victor until the next day and went to work before checking his tickets. The third ticket he checked was a victor of $4 - for hitting the Powerball number.
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'I'm just gonna take off somewhere and take my time with it, ' Franco said about what the next chapter may hold for him. "I looked back at the three other numbers, they all matched". My heart started racing, my blood started pumping, I felt warm. Wisconsin Department of Revenue Secretary Peter Barca said at the news conference that if the victor or winners take the cash prize, the state would claim $38 million of the winnings as tax revenue. He didn't know how much the state would receive in taxes each year if the victor or winners choose the annuity route. The victor also can choose a $477 million cash option.
Franco had 180 days to claim the ticket.
Franco said his financial goal before winning the jackpot was getting his bank account to the $1,000 mark. He's also prepared for the onslaught of requests for money that will come his way. "I plan to live my life normal as much as possible", he said. I just can't believe an ordinary guy like me would ever be in this position.
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Under Wisconsin law, winners can not remain anonymous.
"It was fantastic, my heart started racing.I screamed for five to ten minutes", he said.
"I got that paranoia when you think the whole world is after you", he said. I left work that day, i remember hearing that day "Powerball victor Wisconsin".
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