$1M Lotto Winner Charged With Welfare Fraud

'I've got bills to pay,' Amanda Clayton explained

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff

Posted Apr 18, 2012 12:52 AM CDT | Updated Apr 18, 2012 1:22 AM CDT

(Newser) – Some people decide not to quit their jobs after a lottery win. Amanda Clayton apparently decided not to stop collecting welfare. The 25-year-old Michigan woman, who won a $1 million jackpot last year, has been charged with felony welfare fraud for failing to report her winnings while receiving $5,475 in food and medical assistance, ABC reports. "It's simply common sense that million-dollar lottery winners forfeit their right to public assistance," Michigan's attorney general said.

Clayton caused outrage last month when she told a local TV reporter that she felt entitled to collect public assistance. "I feel that it's OK because, I mean, I have no income, and I have bills to pay. I have two houses," she said, explaining that she had only taken home some $500,000 after taxes and a reduction for taking the money in a lump sum. Michigan has now introduced a law that alerts authorities overseeing public assistance whenever a resident wins more than $1,000 in the state lottery.

Amanda Clayton holds her $1 million lottery check.
Amanda Clayton holds her $1 million lottery check.   (AP Photo/courtesy Michigan Lottery via Detroit Free Press)
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