Iowa lottery winner denied $100,000 prize for being underage

By Daniel Uria
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DES MOINES, Iowa, Dec. 23 (UPI) -- An Iowa man was denied his $100,000 lottery winnings after it was discovered he was too young to buy a ticket.

Jobie Boals-Watters, 20, now faces underage gambling charges after attempting to cash in on a lottery ticket that he purchased illegally at a Super Quick Foods store in Des Moines.


Boals-Watters was set to receive a prize totaling up to $70,000 after taxes from Iowa's Mega Crossword instant scratch game as he claimed a co-worker purchased his ticket, which is permitted under Iowa law.

"The information that he presented seemed on the up and up," Iowa Lottery spokesperson Mary Neubauer told KCCI. "He said that a co-worker bought the ticket and gave it to him."

After receiving an anonymous tip, an Iowa Lottery investigation discovered no evidence of office lottery pools at Boals-Watters' place of work and found that he had purchased the ticket himself.

"Lottery security investigated it. Obviously we pulled the security camera footage from the store that was involved and we determined that, in fact, he was the one who purchased the ticket, which made the whole prize invalid," said Neibauer.


In addition to seeking return of the $70,000 prize, the store that sold Boals-Watters the ticket is facing suspension due to Iowa Lottery regulations for failing to check his ID.

"Under the lottery's administrative rules, a store's license to sell lottery products will be suspended for one week for a first time violation of an an underage sale," Neubaur told Radio Iowa.

A hearing for Boals-Watters is scheduled in Polk County District Court on Jan. 13.

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