Lottery jackpot winner claims winnings in Wash.

Associated Press
Idaho Lottery Director Jeff Anderson addresses the media during a news conference on Wednesday, Jan. 5, 2011 at the Idaho Lottery Commission in Boise, Idaho. One of two winning Mega Millions tickets with a $380 million jackpot was sold in Post Falls, Idaho and the other at a Safeway supermarket in the eastern Washington town of Ephrata. (AP Photo/Charlie Litchfield)
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The man who bought one of the two winning tickets in the $380 million Mega Millions lottery is Jim McCullar.

McCullar is in the state capital in Olympia with his wife, Carolyn, and their family on Thursday to claim their half of the second biggest jackpot in history.

Meanwhile, officials in Idaho are waiting for the other lucky ticket-holder to come forward.

The Washington ticket was purchased at a supermarket in Ephrata in eastern Washington and sold to McCullar.

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Online:

http://www.megamillions.com

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — The Washington winner of the Mega Millions lottery jackpot planned to discuss his windfall Thursday, while officials in Idaho waited for another lucky ticket-holder to come forward and claim half of the $380 million prize.

The Washington ticket, purchased at a supermarket in Ephrata, was sold to a retired man who planned to bring his family to claim the winnings Thursday, said Washington Lottery spokesman Scott Kinney.

The holder of the other winning ticket, purchased just 125 miles away in Post Falls, Idaho, remained unknown.

Washington Gov. Chris Gregore planned to meet with her state's jackpot winner Thursday, and joked that she might ask if the family could help with the state's multibillion-dollar budget deficit.

"I'm going to go over at lunch and congratulate him and his wife, and ask them what they're going to do with all that money," Gregoire said with a smile. "And then, I'm going to be honest with them and ask if I can borrow it."

The prospect of winning the second biggest jackpot in history drew huge interest across the country as thousands of people lined up to buy tickets in the 41 states and Washington, D.C., where the lottery is held.

A day after the drawing, all eyes were on a region where most of the nation's frozen french fries are produced, and on the similarity between the winning digits and the ones used by a character on the television show "Lost."

The winners had to match five regular numbers plus the "Mega ball."

The winning numbers were 4, 8, 15, 25 and 47, with the Mega ball number of 42. Four of the six winning numbers matched numbers that were prominently featured throughout the popular series — 4, 8, 15, 16, 23 and 42.

Because of feverish sales right up to the evening drawing, the winners will share a $380 million jackpot, an increase over the previous $355 million estimate, Kinney said.

In March 2007, two winners, in Georgia and New Jersey, shared the richest prize — a $390 million Mega Millions jackpot.

In Idaho, the lucky winner also has the option of taking a nearly $81 million lump sum payment after state and federal taxes are withheld, said Jeff Anderson, executive director of the Idaho Lottery.

No state taxes would apply in Washington, where the lump sum payment would be $90 million after the 25 percent federal tax.

Idaho officials identified Post Falls — a suburb of Spokane, Wash., — as the town where the ticket was bought, but did not release the name of the place where it was sold, citing the state's security procedures.

The lives of the big winners will most certainly change, but for others, the lottery will be a fun memory.

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Associated Press writers Nicholas K. Geranios in Spokane, Wash., Jessie L. Bonner in Boise, Idaho, Phuong Le in Seattle and Oskar Garcia in Las Vegas contributed to this report.

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Online:

http://www.megamillions.com

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