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December 21. 2012 1:36PM

HIllsborough man wins Megabucks thanks to store clerk's mistake

HILLSBOROUGH - Christmas came a few days early for Scott Bennett and family Wednesday when a ticket he'd received by mistake won a $2.1M Tri-State Megabucks jackpot.

Bennett, who works in property management, stopped by the Irving Circle K convenience store on Main Street in Hillsborough on Wednesday to buy a drink. While there, he thought he'd try his luck with the lottery. He asked for a ticket for another lottery game, but clerk Nikki Gee accidentally printed a ticket for Tri-State Megabucks. Bennett, who either didn't notice or didn't mind Gee said, took the ticket and left.

The next day, Travis Bennett, Scott's oldest son, heard that the Hillsborough convenience store had sold a winning Megabucks ticket. Turns out the ticket Gee sold Scott was that ticket.

“He came in yesterday to thank me and said I had made a very good mistake,” said Gee, 24.

The Bennetts won a jackpot of $2.1 million, which they could have taken in installments over 30 years, but at a press event at the Circle K on Friday, New Hampshire Lottery spokeswoman Maura McCann said the family had opted to take a lump sum payment that will come in just under $1 million in cash after taxes.

Cathy Bennett, a paraprofessional at the Hillsborough-Deering Elementary School, was on hand with her parents Wally and Sharon Houghton, daughter Danielle, 23, her sons Travis, 20, and Brett, 16, and Travis's girlfriend Haley Rubin to accept the large check from the lottery. Scott Bennett couldn't make it to the press conference, his wife said.

“He's at work,” she said, “he's out sanding and plowing.”

Cathy Bennett said the money will be used to pay off college loans and renovate the kitchen. And, she said, there might be a little extra something under the tree for everyone on Christmas. Otherwise, life will go on as usual.

“We're going to keep working,” she said. “We both love our jobs.”


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