2017-08-10 / Front Page

Liquor store sells $3M scratcher

Winner chooses to keep anonymity
By Sylvie Belmond


JACKPOT—Mimi Shon, owner of Village Spirits Shoppe in Westlake and mother of Yani Shon, displays the notification she received letting her know the winning $3-million scratcher was sold at her store. For selling the ticket, the store owner will receive around $15,000. 
SYLVIE BELMOND/Acorn Newspapers JACKPOT—Mimi Shon, owner of Village Spirits Shoppe in Westlake and mother of Yani Shon, displays the notification she received letting her know the winning $3-million scratcher was sold at her store. For selling the ticket, the store owner will receive around $15,000. SYLVIE BELMOND/Acorn Newspapers A $5 scratcher has won a local woman $3 million.

The California Lottery Scratchers ticket was sold July 31 at a liquor store in Westlake Village.

The winner can collect the lump sum or receive $10,000 a month for 25 years. She reportedly opted for the latter.

Yani Shon, whose family has owned the Village Spirits Shoppe at the County Line shopping center on Lakeview Canyon Road for over 30 years, said the winner is a longtime customer who had purchased eight “Set for Life” scratchers. The lucky woman returned the following day.

“She came back and said, ‘Oh, Yani, I won something big,” Shon said.

“I thought maybe she won $1,000 or $2,000, but then she said she got the lifetime prize. She had tears in her eyes. She didn’t believe it either,” Shon said.

The store owner’s share of the prize is about $15,000.

After its due diligence, California

Lottery confirmed the winning.

“We want to make sure the winner is legitimate. The Lottery’s security law enforcement division has to verify the identity of the winner, and sometimes it takes a week or two from the time they fill out the paperwork,” Greg Parashak, a spokesperson for the Lottery, told the Acorn.

It is not be the first time a customer at Village Spirits scored big in the game of chance. The store, in fact, has a lucky reputation.

In 2016, customers there collected a combined $1.3 million in winnings.

In previous years, a $150,000 and a $75,000 ticket were sold at the store.

Shon said the winning woman and her son, who has special needs, always come together to buy Scratchers.

That day, she bought four tickets for herself and four for her son.

While some people choose to tell their stories when their names become public, others prefer not to.

“She didn’t tell anyone at her work either. She doesn’t want to talk about it,” Shon said.

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