Lottery Winner May Forfeit $1 Million Prize Because Gambling Violated His Parole

The winner of a $1 million lottery scratch ticket may not be so lucky after all.

That is because he is also a convicted bank robber who is not supposed to be gambling.

The state probation commissioner's office has scheduled a hearing for Dec. 7 in Barnstable Superior Court to determine whether Timothy Elliott, 55, violated his probation when he bought the $10 ticket for the "$800 Million Spectacular" game at a supermarket, department spokeswoman Coria Holland said Wednesday.

Elliott already has collected the first of 20 annual $50,000 checks from Massachusetts' lottery commission. A picture of Elliott, holding his first check, was even posted on the lottery's Web site Monday, though it was removed by Wednesday.

Elliott was placed on five years probation after pleading guilty in October 2006 to unarmed robbery for a January 2006 heist at a bank on Cape Cod.

Under terms of his probation, Elliott "may not gamble, purchase lottery tickets or visit an establishment where gaming is conducted, including restaurants where Keno may be played."

He also was put under the care of the state Department of Mental Health and sent to Taunton State Hospital for treatment.

State officials refused Wednesday to say whether he was still receiving treatment. But court documents cited by the Cape Cod Times Wednesday said Elliott is currently allowed off hospital grounds unsupervised during daylight hours.

A telephone number for Elliott could not immediately be located on Wednesday, and it was not clear if he had a lawyer.

Lottery spokesman Dan Rosenfeld said the lottery routinely cross references the names of winners with the state Revenue Department to see if they owe back taxes or child support. In those cases, winnings go straight to the Revenue Department.

But in this case, it will be up to the court to determine what will happen with Elliott's winnings.

"This is kind of new territory," he said.