• Powerball jackpot up to fourth-largest: $325 million

    By: Catherine Bilkey


    CHARLOTTE, N.C. - It's the fourth-largest jackpot in Powerball history: $325 million. While it's played in 42 states, people in North Carolina hope they'll be the lucky ones.

    They were excited to buy tickets even though the odds of winning are about one in 175 million.

    "I'm due to win," Robert Tuck said.

    "And if I hit, I'd be one happy guy," Paul Tollison said.

    He said he budgets for Powerball.

    "I look at it this way -- it's a beer," Tollison said. "Instead of having a beer, I buy a lotto ticket."

    And $325 million would be great return on a beer investment.

    "I'd give half to charity and keep the other half and put it to good use," Tollison said.

    At the Citgo Pop Shoppe on Old Pineville Road, people lined up to try their luck filling out numbers. Sandra Goines played some of her lucky numbers, her grandkids' birthdays.

    "The bigger it gets, the more I play," Goines said.

    The odds are tough.

    "Still worth playing. All it takes is just one number," Goines said.

    She said she'd put that money to good use starting with helping out her grandkids. She also would give money to her church. "I have other family members and just retire," she said.

    As for the very pleasant choice of taking the lump sum of nearly $213 million or 30 yearly payments averaging around $11 million (before taxes), Goines said she'd take the quick cash if she had those winning numbers.

    If no one wins the jackpot, it could grow to $425 million.

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