The winner of a recent jackpot prize has experienced “an unforeseen side effect,” according to the Iowa Lottery.
“I haven’t gotten any sleep all weekend,” Michael Bechthold, of Monticello, told lottery officials Monday, Oct. 30, when claiming his big win.
Bechthold, a corrections officer, said he was inspired to buy a ticket while visiting a friend who plays the Jackpot Party Progressive game.
“I said, ‘Hey, have you been winning anything on it?’” Bechthold recalled to lottery officials. “He said, ‘Yeah, a little here, a little there, but (the jackpot) is up to like $110,000. I said, ‘Man, that would be awesome.’ Then I turn around and hit it Friday night.”
Despite being unable to sleep, Bechthold told lottery officials the big win has brought him some relief.
“It’s going to help me get caught up and get ahead,” he said when claiming his prize. “I’m retiring in 16 months from the penitentiary in Anamosa and it’s going to make me debt-free other than the house payment. The weight that’s been lifted, it’s incredible.”
The odds of winning the progressive jackpot prize are 1 in 40,000, according to the game’s website. The jackpot starts at $10,000 and goes up as more people buy tickets.
His winning ticket was sold by Karde’s Convenience Store in Monticello, about 40 miles northeast of Cedar Rapids.
Many people can gamble or play games of chance without harm. However, for some, gambling is an addiction that can ruin lives and families.
If you or a loved one shows signs of gambling addiction, you can seek help by calling the national gambling hotline at 1-800-522-4700 or visiting the National Council on Problem Gambling website.