Woman Says She Accidentally Destroyed $26 Million Winning Lottery Ticket in Washing Machine Talk about quite literally washing your chances of millions of dollars away.

By Emily Rella

Buena Vista Images | Getty Images

Talk about quite literally washing your chances of millions of dollars away.

One Norwalk, California woman claims she had the winning $26 million ticket but there's a slight problem — she accidentally washed the ticket in her washing machine.

The woman, who has remained anonymous, claims that she went into the Arco AM/PM convenience store and purchased the ticket, which was drawn on November 14. By the time the final day to claim the prize came on May 14, no one had come to claim the winning ticket, which led the woman to stop by the store and explain what had happened.

The store's manager said that there is surveillance footage confirming the woman buying the winning ticket and that the footage has been turned over to California Lottery officials. In order to claim a prize without the ticket present, winners must be able to provide proof that they owned the ticket at one point in time, usually via photo.

The $26 million prize could be paid out in yearly installments or in one cash payment of $19.7 million. Since no one has claimed the prize, the $19.7 million will now go to support California public schools through the California Department of Education.

The winning numbers were: 23, 36, 12, 31, 13, and the mega number of 10.

The largest prize currently being offered through the California Lottery is the Mega Millions, which is currently going for $468 million.

The next draw will be on May 18.

Emily Rella

Entrepreneur Staff

Senior News Writer

Emily Rella is a Senior News Writer at Entrepreneur.com. Previously, she was an editor at Verizon Media. Her coverage spans features, business, lifestyle, tech, entertainment, and lifestyle. She is a 2015 graduate of Boston College and a Ridgefield, CT native. Find her on Twitter at @EmilyKRella.

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