Mega Millions winner refuses to share money
Also on the best-selling burger now: bitterness, fury and unadulterated rage.
In Baltimore, Maryland, you’ll be hard pressed to order a Happy Meal this week without making a McDonald’s worker cringe with resentment. Employee Mirlande Wilson says she bought one of the winning tickets to the biggest lottery jackpot in the history of the world, but she doesn’t plan to share her loot with the rest of the crew at the fast food eatery — even if they paid her to purchase tickets.
Wilson, a 37-year-old Haitian immigrant, says she bought her winning numbers with her own money — not the $75 her coworkers pooled together to purchase tickets in the recent Mega Millions lotto drawing. Over a dozen of her fellow Mickey Dees employees claim they forked over five dollars a pop to have Wilson purchase tickets for the store, but the alleged winner claims that the lucky numbers were bought in a separate transaction using her own money. Now with Wilson standing to rake in over $100 million, the rest of the McDonald’s crew are left cynical and suspicious and are demanding that they be divvied up their share of the prize.
“She can’ t do this to us!” shift manager Suleiman Osman Husein tells the New York Post. Husein says 15 members of the staff at the Maryland McDonald’s pooled in cash towards the big jackpot, and they are now outraged that Wilson stands to take home millions and leave her coworkers sulking in their red polyester uniforms.
“We each paid $5. She took everybody’s money!” insists Husein.
Wilson says it isn’t that simple though. “We had a group plan, but I went and played by myself. [The ‘winning’ ticket] wasn’t on the group plan,” Wilson tells The Post this week. The winning ticket, which would be one of three in the country, would come with an after-tax lump sum of $105 million. While the other two winners have come clean, however, Wilson has so far refused to produce the lucky ticket. She originally claimed that she had hid the ticket and would hand it into officials on Monday, but with outrage erupting over her handling of the issue, Wilson has since become uncertain of her alleged win.
“I don’t know if I won. Some of the numbers were familiar. I recognized some of them,” she would later add. “I don’t know why' people are saying differently. I’m going to go to the lottery office today. I bought some tickets separately.”
To The Post, the clerk at the convenience store where the winning ticket was sold is also skeptical that Wilson purchased the prize set of numbers. Additionally, the owner of the McDonald’s restaurant in question adds to the paper, “It’s all bullshit, if you ask me. It’s speculation.”
If Wilson does indeed have the winning ticket, she stands to have more than enough to compensate her co-workers should she wish. For a full year’s worth of work at McDonald’s earning minimum wage, the average employee could expect to make $15,600 a year. Wilson’s “winning” ticket, when divided 15 ways, would mean each employee could collect around $7 million apiece.