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Norwalk Man’s 5 Card Cash Lottery Ticket Gets Him $255,555

Lucky George Togridis of Norwalk won the $255,555 “5 Card Cash” lottery game on Friday and got his check on Monday.

By David Gurliacci , Patch Staff
Jul 16, 2014 1:09 p m ET

George Togridis of Norwalk found out Friday that he had a perfect five-card match for the 5 Card Cash game’s top prize — which put $174,545 in cash in his pocket Monday (after taxes), when he claimed the prize.

The Connecticut Lottery issued this news release Wednesday about Togridis’ win:

Last Friday morning, George Togridis of Norwalk stopped by his favorite hometown grocery store to pick up swim goggles for his son, a cup of coffee, and a 5 Card Cash ticket for the July 11th drawing.

Togridis’ ticket had a Pair of Kings for a $3 instant win, but he held onto his ticket to see if he would win again in the daily Drawing. Later that day, he scanned his 5 Card Cash ticket.

“When I saw $255,555 on the ticket checker, I thought it was an ad for the game’s top prize. It just didn’t make sense to me,” said Todridis, laughing. “So, I had them run my ticket through the lottery terminal and I got the print out. It was a jackpot ticket…MY jackpot ticket. I didn’t believe it when I saw it.”

The “cards” on Togridis’ 5 Card Cash ticket were a perfect match to the winning hand drawn for July 11: AC – 5C – KH – KS – 3H.

In addition to Togridis’ $255,555 top prize win, 430 tickets on that date contained a match for prizes ranging from $20 to $555. A total of 25,702 tickets contained “Instant Win” prizes ranging from a $2 (free ticket) to $555.

Togridis purchased his prize winning ticket at Hills Confectionery, a family-owned grocery store located at 57 Stevens St. in Norwalk. Jimmy Panagiotidis, a co-owner of Hills, was equally thrilled for Togridis’ good fortune.

It’s the second substantially large prize winning ticket sold at Hills Confectionery this year—the first was a “$25,000 a year for life” second prize (claimed as a $390,000 cash lump sum) for the Jan. 23, 2014 “Lucky for Life” drawing.

“We’ve been here forever,” Panagiotidis said. “We treat everyone that comes to the store like our friends and family.”

Monday, Togridis arrived at CT Lottery headquarters in Rocky Hill where he accepted a prize check for $174,545 (value after taxes).

“I’m going to put the money away for a college fund for my three kids and then pretend this win never happened,” Togridis said.

For selling Togridis his prize winning ticket, Hills Confectionery will also receive a $2,500 check from the CT Lottery.

To learn more about any CT Lottery game, visit the CT Lottery’s YouTube channel (YouTube.com/CTLottery), Facebook (facebook.com/CTLottery) or Twitter (twitter.com/ctlottery) sites, or stop by any CT Lottery retailer location.

The overall odds of winning any 5 Card Cash prize are 1 in 4.1. The Instant Win overall odds are 1 in 4.2. Daily Drawing overall odds are 1 in 235.3. The top Drawing prize is subject to split prize liability and may be lower than shown.

Norwalk Man's 5 Card Cash Lottery Ticket Gets Him $255,555 – Norwalk, CT – Lucky George Togridis of Norwalk won the $255,555 "5 Card Cash" lottery game on Friday and got his check on Monday.

Connecticut Lottery Failed to Report 5 Card Cash Fraud Concerns: Report

Published May 2, 2017 • Updated on May 2, 2017 at 1:37 pm

Connecticut lottery officials were aware of the potential for cheating with the 5 Card Cash game before the game was even instituted, but did nothing, according to a new report provided by the Department of Consumer Protection.

Tickets for the Connecticut lottery’s 5 Card Cash Game haven’t been sold since an investigation into fraud concerns began in 2015. The state learned from retailers that there were concerns over cheating in the cash poker-style game that allowed people to manipulate the tickets to win.

On Tuesday, lawmakers revisited the issue in a public hearing at an information hearing. The Public Safety and Security Committee invited the public to discuss the investigation into the game as well as the severance package awarded to the former Connecticut lottery CEO Anne Noble.

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According to the new investigation report, Connecticut Lottery Corporation officials were warned of concerns from other state lotteries about the potential for fraud with games set up in the same style as 5 Card Cash, but did not pass that information along to DCP’s Gaming Division.

During testing before the game’s launch, lottery officials discovered bet details could be seen by retailers on customer history screens, and the lottery took steps to monitor retailer activity as a result. However, this information was not passed along to DCP.

The DCP report states that as early as July or August of 2014 the lottery knew there were issues with bet details because of the information provided on the customer history screens, but no action was taken.

Eventually retailers found there was a way to essentially find out of a bet was a winner, then slow down the system and avoid losing tickets.

Despite lottery officials knowing about potential problems over a year before, the first report to DCP that there may be an issue with 5 Card Cash until October 29, 2015. That November the game was temporarily suspended and the lottery said it had plans to install new software to enhance security and eliminate the problem.

Multiple lottery merchants were arrested on cheating accusations, and lottery officials estimated some retailers earned tens of thousands of dollars through the fraud. Some of the money was recovered.

Iinvestigation led to a permanent suspension of the game. The state concluded that some lottery officials were in violation of reporting requirements and that there was cause to question the “suitability” of certain lottery employees.

Anne Noble, who was one of the officials under investigation, announced her resignation in August 2016 and officially surrender her license and stepped down in September. However, she stayed on as a paid adviser to the lottery board for several more months.

“DCP takes the investigation into the 5 Card Cash game incredibly seriously,” said Consumer Protection Commissioner Michelle H. Seagull in a statement. “We remain ready, willing, and able to provide the information we can to the legislature and the public. Our investigation is coming to a close and we will provide further information upon its completion. I want to thank our gaming division for working so diligently on this matter, and the public for their patience as we work to finish our investigation as thoroughly as possible.”

Connecticut lottery officials were aware of the potential for cheating with the 5 Card Cash game before the game was even instituted, but did nothing, according…