May 31, 2023

Liquor store clerk accused of stealing $3 million lottery ticket

Liquor store clerk accused of stealing $3 million lottery ticket


A Massachusetts store clerk and her co-worker have been indicted for allegedly trying to steal a winning $3 million lottery ticket left behind by a customer. 

Last week, a grand jury returned indictments charging 23-year-old Carly Nunes with one count of larceny from a building, attempted larceny, presentation of a false claim, and witness intimidation, the Plymouth District Attorney’s Office said in a news release

Her co-worker, 32-year-old Joseph Reddem, was charged with one count of attempted extortion, prosecutors said. The pair are expected to be arraigned at a later undisclosed date. 

An investigation revealed that on Jan. 17 an unidentified man entered a Lakeville liquor store and purchased a bag of barbecue potato chips alongside 4 lottery tickets — two Massachusetts State Lottery Quick Picks for the Mega Millions lottery and two for the Mass Cash lottery — prosecutors said. 

The man added a multiplier to his Mega Millions ticket to increase the jackpot prize and Nunes, who was working the checkout counter, placed the order and printed two lottery tickets, prosecutors said. She returned to the cash register and rang up the victim’s $12 order, but he left the store without his lottery tickets, according to prosecutors. 

Carly Nunes Joseph Reddem lottery scam
Carly Nunes and Joseph Reddem

Plymouth County DA

Forty five minutes after the man left his tickets behind, Nunes rang up another customer who purchased five lottery tickets. The second customer realized he’d been given two extra tickets and handed them back to Nunes, prosecutors said. 

“Nunes took the tickets and said they must have belonged to ‘him,’ meaning the victim,” prosecutors said. 

The man who left the tickets behind briefly searched for them but then assumed he’d lost them. Later that evening, his Mass Millions ticket numbers were announced as the winning digits for a $3 million jackpot, prosectors said. 

Two days later, Reddem drove Nunes and her boyfriend to the Massachusetts State Lottery Headquarters, where the ticket, which was “torn and appeared to be burned,” was determined to be worth $3 million. 

When informed of its value, “Nunes and her boyfriend embraced and celebrated,” prosecutors said. But shortly afterward, Nunes and Reddem were overheard arguing about the amount of money Reddem would receive, with Nunes telling him that she would “only pay him $200,000,” according to prosecutors. 

Due to the argument and the condition of the ticket, Massachusetts Lottery investigators decided to interview Nunes. 

Nunes told investigators that she purchased the winning tickets toward the end of her shift on Jan.17 and said the condition of the tickets was due to her mistakenly tearing it when removing it from her wallet. The burn marks, she said, were because she accidentally placed the ticket on a pipe, prosecutors said.

“Lottery officials informed Nunes that they were opening an investigation and that she would receive the jackpot prize at the conclusion of that investigation,” prosecutors said. “Lottery officials contacted Massachusetts State Police and an investigation commenced.”

Investigators discovered surveillance footage that confirmed Nunes had not purchased the winning ticket. In subsequent interviews, Nunes changed her story and said she’d “inadvertently obtained” the winning ticket.

Investigators worked for a month to locate the man who left his winning tickets behind, finally finding him on Feb.13, prosecutors said.

The Massachusetts State Lottery Commission say they intend to honor the man’s claim to the $3 million jackpot. 

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