A woman who claims to have one of the three winning Mega Millions lottery tickets has yet to present the alleged ticket to Maryland lottery officials, and her lawyer says it remains unclear if the item is lost or in her possession.
Marlinde Wilson, 37, a mother of seven who lives in Baltimore, said that she stashed the winning ticket “somewhere safe” in the McDonald’s restaurant where she works. But as of Wednesday afternoon, lottery officials say that nobody has come forward with the winning ticket to claim one-third of the $656 million multi-state payout.
Wilson and her lawyer, Edward Smith Jr., called a press conference Wednesday asking that reporters respect her privacy. Repeatedly during the event, Smith asked the press to “go home,” saying Wilson was experiencing medical issues as a result of the media scrutiny.
When asked by a reporter to summarize “the purpose of today’s press conference,” Smith said it was “to ask you to go home.”
Wilson sat behind her lawyer during the press conference and refused to take questions. Her lawyer said he had not seen the winning ticket “nor do I wish to see it.”
“I can’t say with any certainty that this ticket exists. You never say that it’s so until you’ve seen it with your own eyes,” he added.
He would not answer when or if Wilson will present the ticket to Maryland lottery officials, who must verify any claim to a win through the paper evidence.
Smith also denied that his client, an immigrant from Haiti, was seeking her 15 minutes of fame, saying “I don’t think so….she wants a lifetime of being anonymous.”
Wilson alleges that she and her McDonald’s co-workers went in on a group of lottery tickets for last week’s drawing, but she says the winning ticket was purchased specifically for her by another co-worker.
She allegedly said she hid her winning ticket at work.
“I left my ticket there, and it’s somewhere safe that only I know about,” she told The Post through a Creole-speaking translator.
Her attorney on Wednesday denied that Wilson spoke to the newspaper about stashing her winning ticket in a safe location at the McDonald’s, saying he believed “someone with an ax to grind” was behind the Post story.