Anonymous winner claims $1.5 billion Mega Millions jackpot

After months of uncertainty, a single winner has come forward to claim the $1.5 billion Mega Millions jackpot in South Carolina.

While the prize may have been claimed, there is still some mystery about just who the winner is. According to a lottery commission statement, the person submitting the claim has chosen to remain anonymous.

The winner reportedly chose the cash option, a one-time payment of nearly $878 million. It's the largest jackpot payout to a single winner in United States history, according to lottery records.

“We are delighted that the winner is a South Carolinian and has come forward to claim this remarkable prize,” said Hogan Brown, the Commission’s Executive Director.

The winning ticket was purchased at the KC Mart #7 on Lee Vaughn Road in Simpsonville, SC and matched all six numbers in the Oct. 23, 2018 drawing.

RELATED: $1.5 billion Mega Millions jackpot sold in SC still unclaimed

For months, South Carolina residents had speculated on why the winner hadn’t stepped forward.

Some theorized that the winner was on the run from police and feared a background check if he or she won. Some thought the winner was so overwhelmed at seeing the winning numbers pop up that he or she died on the spot. Others speculated that the winning ticket had been purchased by an office pool and was now the subject of litigation.

The lucky ticket holder cut the timing a little close. They had 180 days from the drawing to come forward. Time would have officially run out to claim the jackpot on April 19, 2019.

The prize being claimed does come with other benefits for the state and the shop that sold it.


The KC Mart in Simpsonville will receive $50,000 for selling the winning ticket and the state will receive $61 million in income taxes from the winner, the commission said in the statement.

The numbers drawn on Oct. 23 were 5, 28, 62, 65, 70 and Mega Ball 5. 

This story was reported on from Charlotte, N.C. The Associated Press contributed to this report.