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Woman plays numbers from TV show about lottery winners - and wins

Sep 27, 2007, 9:46 pm

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New Mexico woman plays 'most frequent numbers' on TV show about lottery winners and wins $20,000 in Powerball

TV viewers in other states play and win off same numbers

The TLC Network's broadcast of "How the Lottery Changed My Life" might not have been DeShundra Jackson's first choice for Sunday night television viewing, but since her mother was already engrossed in the program, Jackson didn't think about changing the channel.

The only thing she changed was her luck.

After the show announced what it believed were the most frequently drawn lotto numbers, the 28-year-old New Mexico resident stored the so-called lucky combination of 8-25-31-50-44-54 in her cell phone.

When she purchased a $1 ticket for Wednesday's Powerball drawing, Jackson specifically requested the same numbers from the TV program.

She also spent another $1 on the Power Play option, which multiplies prizes between two and five times.

"I'll try anything," Jackson said. "I thought to myself 'I should really play these numbers."

It was a wager that paid off. The winning numbers drawn on Wednesday were 25-27-31-44-54 and the Powerball number was 8. Jackson had five of those numbers on her ticket.

Jackson's decision to purchase the Power Play option doubled Jackson's prize from $10,000 to $20,000.

According to the Multi-State Lottery Association (MUSL), which administers Powerball, 256 tickets won $10,000 prizes after matching four white balls and the red Powerball. Sixty of those tickets also had the Power Play option multiplying their prizes into $20,000 each.

Based on sales, MUSL projected that 29 tickets would match four white balls and the red Powerball in Wednesday's drawing.

The New Mexico Lottery sold six other tickets that matched four white numbers and the red Powerball for Wednesday's drawing, but those players have yet to come forward to claim their prizes.

It is unknown at this time whether they selected their numbers after watching "How the Lottery Changed My Life."

Five players in Oklahoma, one in Ohio, and two in Rhode Island collected prizes today citing the TV program as the inspiration for their number choices.

New Mexico Lottery CEO Tom Romero said the odds of matching four white balls and the red Powerball are one in 584,432.

"Lots of players have patterns for playing numbers — birthdays, anniversaries, the ages of friends and family members — and anytime their numbers win, it's a lucky coincidence," Romero said. "This is one of the odder coincidences that sometimes happen."

Jackson, who purchased her winning ticket at Freeway Liquors at 2034 2nd Street, NW in Albuquerque, plans to share the prize with her family after paying bills.

The massage therapist who works at the Essence Day Spa in Corrales also plans to buy tickets for Saturday's Powerball drawing — and she's going to play the same numbers from the TV show.

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