Entries in Winner (6)


Body of Lotto Winner Who Died of Cyanide Poisoning Likely to Be Exhumed

Ann Cutting/Thinkstock(CHICAGO) -- The body of a $1 million lottery jackpot winner will likely be exhumed from Rosehill Cemetery in Chicago, according to the Cook County medical examiner, who determined that the winner died of cyanide poisoning.

Last June Urooj Khan, 46, won $1 million in a scratch-off lottery game, or $425,000 after taxes, but he died unexpectedly on July 20. Since there were no signs of foul play or any cause for suspicion, his death was attributed to arteriosclerotic cardiovascular disease, which covers heart attacks, stroke or ruptured aneurysm.

But a few days after the death certificate was issued, a family member called the medical examiner's office and asked that the death be investigated, said Dr. Stephen Cina, Cook County's chief medical examiner. Cina said he could not disclose the identity of the family member because of the ongoing investigation.

"We are in discussion with the state attorney about whether we are going to do an exhumation. Right now, we are leaning in that direction. We have a cause and matter of death on the books, and we're comfortable with that," Cina told ABC News. "If or when this goes to court, it would be nice to have all the data possible."

Cina said the final toxicology results came back in late November showing a lethal level of cyanide, which led to the homicide investigation. Melissa Stratton, a spokeswoman for the Chicago Police Department, confirmed a murder investigation had been "under way," and that the police department had been working closely with the medical examiner's office.

Khan is survived by his wife, Shabana Ansari, 32, and teenage daughter. The family owned three dry-cleaning businesses in Chicago.

Ansari told the Chicago Tribune that Khan was "the best husband on the entire planet" and "extraordinary, nice, kind and lovable."

Ansari could not be reached by ABC News for comment.

The police are not confirming whether Khan's lottery winnings played a part in the homicide.

When asked why cyanide, a chemical asphyxiant that binds to red blood cells and prevents the entry of oxygen, was not found in the initial examination of Khan's body, Cina said, "Quite frankly, it's unusual as a cause of death, so it's not at the top of your mind."

He said about 50 percent of people can smell cyanide, but it is more noticeable when the body is opened up.

Sometimes the coloring of blood changes with cyanide poisoning after death, becoming "more reddish than purple," he said.

"In this case that wasn't particularly striking," Cina said, describing the first examination of Khan's body.

"It strangles your red blood cells at a biochemical level," he said.


Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Maryland Mega Millions Winner Claims Share of $656 Million Jackpot

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(BALTIMORE) -- The second of three people who’ll share a record $656 million Mega Millions jackpot has claimed a piece of the prize.

However, as with another winner who stepped forward in Kansas last week, the Maryland winner has chosen to remain anonymous, which the state allows.

Nevertheless, Maryland Lottery officials will provide details about the winning ticket from the March 30 drawing at a news conference Tuesday at 8 a.m., according to a news release.

Monday, they said the winner purchased the winning ticket at a 7-Eleven store in Milford Mill, Md., outside Baltimore.

A Maryland McDonald’s employee, Mirlande Wilson, 37, has publicly claimed to be the winner from Maryland but last week told reporters she couldn’t find her ticket. Lottery officials voiced skepticism about her claim.

A third winning ticket was sold in Illinois, but the winner has not yet stepped forward.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Mega Millions 'Winner' Has Press Conference to Tell Reporters to 'Go Home'

ABC News(BALTIMORE) -- The Baltimore woman who claims she bought one of the three winning Mega Millions tickets had a news conference Wednesday, showed up late and then had her lawyer tell the reporters to "go home."

Merlande Wilson, 37 and the mother of seven, is the only person so far to tentatively make a claim for a share of the $656 million jackpot. But she has also raised eyebrows by repeatedly saying she has to find her ticket -- something most people would be safeguarding.

Wilson's lawyer, Edward Smith, said he cannot vouch for the ticket.

"I have not seen it and in fact I don't think I want to see it until the lottery people have it in their hot little hands," Smith said.

Wilson showed up late for a new conference called by her lawyer and sat slouched in a chair behind Smith. She muttered and shook or nodded her head depending on the question. She also played on her cellphone and often stared down to the ground.

When the news conference finally began, the lawyer told the press that they "should all go home." Smith said there was legal work to do and he wanted things to settle down.

Wilson, who works at a McDonald's restaurant, has said that she is still trying to find her ticket and, at another point, suggested she has hidden it somewhere in the restaurant.

The possibility that she has won the bonanza -- her share of a one-time payment would be $157.8 million -- has prompted some of her co-workers to claim that they deserve a share of the money because they bought the tickets together.

Smith would not address the claims by Wilson's co-workers.

The focus on the restaurant has prompted McDonalds to add two security guards to the store.

The other two winners bought their tickets in Illinois and Kansas.

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Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Chicago Man Finds Winning Lottery Ticket Worth $9 Million a Year Later

Stockbyte/Thinkstock(CHICAGO) -- While millions of people hope to win the $312 million Mega Millions jackpot Friday, a Chicago man has already come up a winner with numbers he picked in a drawing more than a year ago.

Irving Przyborski discovered the winning ticket while doing his taxes.

"When I got my papers out, everything fell out and I said, 'What the hell is this?,'" Przyborski said.

Przyborski said he had forgotten about the lottery ticket, which was dated a year old.  He then looked up the numbers from last March's drawing and realized he had won the big prize -- $9 million to be exact.

Had he waited one more week, the ticket would have expired.

With news of the win came a lot of media attention, and Przyborski said he feels "worn out" and that his head is "like a gyroscope."

He said he plans to keep some of the money and donate the rest to charity.

"All I want to be is another face in the crowd, that's all," Przyborski said.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Scottish Deerhound Takes Top Prize at Westminster Kennel Club Show

Photo Courtesy - Timothy A. Clary/AFP/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- A black haired Scottish deerhound named Hickory clinched the top prize Tuesday night at the second-longest running sports event in U.S. -- the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.

The 5-year-old, 85 pound pooch was named best in show after beating out several other dogs from top breeds including a Portuguese water dog, smooth fox terrier and black cocker spaniel in the final round.

Hickory is the first Scottish deerhound to win the club's top dog title along with a long purple and gold ribbon and silver trophy.

Compared to golden retrievers and labradors, it's a breed not many people are accustomed to seeing in the U.S.

"Sure, not your common golden retriever…she loves unconditional no matter what, it's really hard to describe this dog, there are really no words for her," handler Angela Lloyd told ABC News after Hickory's win.

Bred for hunting, Scottish deerhounds are also the royal dog of Scotland.

More than 2,500 dogs from 179 breeds, including six new breeds, competed in the two-day event held at Madison Square Garden in New York.

This year's competition was an open field, with no clear favorite.  The 2010 best in show winner, Sadie the Scottie terrier, retired.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Mega Millions Winner to Split Winnings with Estranged Husband?

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(SPOKANE, Wash.) -- The nation's newest gazillionaire, Holly Lahti, may have to split her $190 million winnings with her estranged, ex-convict husband, Joshua Lahti.

Holly Lahti, 29, has yet to publicly come forward after claiming her winning Mega Millions ticket Tuesday.

Lahti's estranged husband, Joshua Lahti, has been arrested more than a dozen times and been convicted of domestic battery, drug possession and buying alcohol for a minor. His more serious sentence was for battery in which he was ordered to spend 30 days in jail and pay a $200 fine.

He was also arrested and charged with kidnapping and false imprisonment, but those charges were later dismissed, court records show. He has had numerous traffic violations.

The couple, while separated, are not divorced, ABC News affiliate KXLY reported.

In January 2003, both Holly and Joshua Lahti were booked on charges of battery and jailed. Holly Lahti sported a black eye in her mug shot. Joshua Lahti was charged with violating a no-contact order and battery. The charges against both were eventually dropped.

It's not known if Holly Lahti planned to share her winnings with her estranged husband. Joshua Lahti said he found out about his wife's good fortune from a reporter, KXLY reported. Lahti said that the couple have been married a decade and have two daughters, a 10-year-old and a 12-year-old.

Until Mrs. Lahti discovered she won half of the $380 million Mega Million lottery, she was working as a customer service representative at Inland Northwest Bank in Post Falls, Idaho. She'd been working for the bank since 2007, a spokesperson for the bank told ABC News.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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