A 70-year-old Naperville resident has come forward as the winner of a $270 million Mega Millions prize – the largest in the history of the Illinois Lottery. Jesus Davila Jr., a retired driver, purchased $5 of Quick Pick tickets from a convenience store in nearby Glendale Heights for the drawing on Friday, January 16th. As he watched the drawing at home, he wrote down the winning numbers and compared them to his own ticket.
While he thought that he had matched five main numbers to win $1 million, his son quickly saw that Davila had matched all six main numbers (26, 32, 44, 45 and 58 with Mega Ball 11) to win the jackpot. While he was waiting to step forward and identify himself, he and his family celebrated by leaving the Chicago area for a little while.
Davilaâ€™s past also came to light in Tuesdayâ€™s press conference – he spent 12 years in jail for the manufacture and delivery of cocaine. His spokesman said that he was aware of the charges, but that his client had â€œpaid his debt to societyâ€ and was a good person. Davila himself simply said that he was a â€œregular Joeâ€.
He plans to donate some of his massive windfall to charities, share it with his family and buy a house and a riding lawnmower. Davila took the lump sum option, meaning that he will receive almost $127 million after taxes.
Davilaâ€™s prize broke a record held since April 2012, when Merle and Patricia Butler of Red Bud, Illinois claimed a Mega Millions prize worth $218.6 million. They took a share of the record-breaking $656 million offered up in the draw held on Friday March 30th of that year. Visit the Mega Millions Information page at Lottery.net to learn more about the game.