OKLAHOMA CITY – A metro man learns the hard way lottery theft doesn’t pay.
Oklahoma City police released surveillance video of a man seen ripping off an entire stack of lottery tickets from a local gas station.
After putting the story on KFOR.com, someone recognized the accused thief.
Police now have a suspect in mind.
In all the crook made off with more than a thousand dollars in stolen tickets.
The bad news for the thief, stolen tickets can quickly be deactivated, making them worthless.
“It’s not normal for someone to walk in and steal whole rack of tickets,” said Rollo Redburn with the Oklahoma Lottery Commission.
Lottery officials say after leaving the Circle K on south Penn, the suspect took his scratchers to several local stores, but the lottery commission quickly deactivated the tickets.
“When a store notifies us they’ve had something stolen, we shut off the whole package,” said Redburn.
Redburn says any ticket worth more than 600 dollars in winnings also has to be brought to the lottery commission headquarters, making it impossible to stolen big winners.
“All you’re going to be able to cash is smaller 5 or 10 or 20 dollar tickets, and you won’t have much time to do that,” said Redburn.. “We know what’s been activated so it’s just not very smart.”
Luckily, just a few hours after putting the story online at KFOR.com, someone recognized the suspect who learned he didn’t get so lucky, when police were tipped off to the man’s identity.
“In today’s world there’s so many cameras it’s hard to commit a crime and not be recognized. This is a perfect example of that,” said Oklahoma City police Sgt. Gary Knight.
“We’ve got a lot of security to keep people from cashing those tickets,” said Redburn. “It’s not a wise thing to do.”
So far police have not made an arrest, but again they do know who they’re looking for.
Trying to defraud the lottery is a felony offense.