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New York - Penniless Man is $166 Million Mega Winner

Published on: September 9, 2009 10:13 AM
By:  NY Post
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immy Groves, in his Harlem 'hood yesterday, said, "I didn't have a dime in my pocket" until his purchase of a Mega Millions ticket.New York - What’s in this Harlem man’s wallet? He says $168 million.

James “Jimmy” Groves—a Madison Square Garden laborer who recently defaulted on his Capital One credit-card debt—yesterday told The Post that he’s the person who won half of a $336 million Mega Millions lottery jackpot two weeks ago.

“It feels great!” said Groves, 49, near his home in the crime-riddled Grant Houses. “I’m going to Disney World!

“I was down and out, and I didn’t have a dime in my pocket. I asked for a lottery ticket, in 26 installment payments. And the next day, I won $166 million.

“Then the lottery people called me back and told me it was [actually] $168 million,” said the father of two, who has not been publicly confirmed by lottery officials as the winner.

Groves has yet to collect on what would be yearly payments of $6.47 million before taxes. But he is already learning that with all that money comes mighty big headaches.

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He said that since telling family and pals he won, he’s been fielding up to 40 calls each morning from friends, acquaintances and others begging for cash.

“It’s hectic,” said Groves, who had been working the midnight shift at Madison Square Garden stacking chairs. “I wake up every morning, and everyone is on me like stink on s- - -.

“Right now, I’m frustrated. I feel like my family is in a position of jeopardy,” he said. “This is a dangerous neighborhood.

“It’s a dream turned into a nightmare. Winning is the beginning. Living with it is pure hell.

“I know people say, ‘Give me that hell.’ Be careful what you wish for—you just might get it.”

That said, Groves was admittedly living “paycheck to paycheck” before the drawing and could definitely use the money.

Court records show that Capital One—the credit-card issuer whose motto is “What’s in your wallet?”—in March obtained a judgment of nearly $4,000 against Groves for unpaid principal and interest.

State lottery officials yesterday refused to confirm whether Groves is the person who won the half-share of the Aug. 28 Mega Millions drawing .

The winning ticket was bought at Fordham Grocery and Convenience Store in The Bronx and bore the numbers 1-17-31-37-54, with the Mega Ball 31.

The other winner of the jackpot—the second largest in Mega Millions history—bought that ticket in California.

“I can’t confirm anything until we actually have a public check presentation. We’re in the process of putting together a date, a place or time that works for everybody,” said Lottery spokeswoman Carolyn Hapeman.

Sources at the Garden said Groves has told them he won the lottery and has not been at work since the drawing. A Garden spokesman declined to comment.

Groves’ neighbors have been buzzing for days about his reputed staggering good fortune at Grant Houses, where elevators reek of urine and most prior news stories mentioning the project have been about violent crimes there.

One neighbor said Groves last week was toting a store sign bearing the lottery prize amount.

“He told me, ‘I just won $166 million,’ ” Fred Reid, 78, recalled. “I didn’t believe him, but I said congratulations.”

Another resident, Karen Jefferson, said the win is “a blessing for him . . . He can move his family up, out of here.”

She said Groves was known for trying “to get people in the neighborhood jobs at Madison Square Garden.”



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Read Comments (21)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Sep 09, 2009 at 09:24 AM boro park yid Says:

I wish him good luck living in harlem with all that money!

2

 Sep 09, 2009 at 09:20 AM Anonymous Says:


How much braons would it take for this guy to just shut up about this major win and first move out of the neigberhood? That way he wouldn't have all these people breathing down his neck!!

I mean you don't need to be a rocket scientist to figure that out.

But then again it doesn't seem that this guy IS a rocket scientist....

3

 Sep 09, 2009 at 10:01 AM aron Says:

in 3 months hes done with the gelt!

4

 Sep 09, 2009 at 09:46 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #2  
Anonymous Says:


How much braons would it take for this guy to just shut up about this major win and first move out of the neigberhood? That way he wouldn't have all these people breathing down his neck!!

I mean you don't need to be a rocket scientist to figure that out.

But then again it doesn't seem that this guy IS a rocket scientist....

sure has more "brains" than you! At least he can spell!!

5

 Sep 09, 2009 at 10:58 AM joe Says:

he's the type of guy who was smart picking the 26 payments b/c he probably has no money management skills and has no one to turn for advice

6

 Sep 09, 2009 at 10:51 AM LIBERALISM IS A DISEASE!!!! Says:

I wonder how he will feel when more than half his winnings go to taxes. I wonder how how he will feel once he realizes HIS money is being stolen from him by Obama & his gang of crooks.

7

 Sep 09, 2009 at 09:39 AM Anonymous Says:

now he will get new rims on his car

8

 Sep 09, 2009 at 12:03 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #6  
LIBERALISM IS A DISEASE!!!! Says:

I wonder how he will feel when more than half his winnings go to taxes. I wonder how how he will feel once he realizes HIS money is being stolen from him by Obama & his gang of crooks.

he'd still have to pay taxes on it if Bush were in office.

9

 Sep 09, 2009 at 10:16 AM FVNMS Says:

Reply to #2  
Anonymous Says:


How much braons would it take for this guy to just shut up about this major win and first move out of the neigberhood? That way he wouldn't have all these people breathing down his neck!!

I mean you don't need to be a rocket scientist to figure that out.

But then again it doesn't seem that this guy IS a rocket scientist....

A very rich non-rocket scientist. Unfortunately (and I hope it's not true for Mr. Groves) most lottery winners lose all their Winnings because of lack of discipline and comprehension of monetary value. They spend like it's going out of style and eventually find themselves poor again. I would advise Mr. Groves to spend his first large sum on a financial planner. Then second - get the h$$l out of Harlem.

10

 Sep 09, 2009 at 01:51 PM mt mehdi Says:

I'm happy for him. I hope he gets to enjoy his money and have a happy life.

11

 Sep 09, 2009 at 02:37 PM Steven Says:

Reply to #6  
LIBERALISM IS A DISEASE!!!! Says:

I wonder how he will feel when more than half his winnings go to taxes. I wonder how how he will feel once he realizes HIS money is being stolen from him by Obama & his gang of crooks.

As much as I agree with you and as much as I am NOT a fan of the current socialist president, the tax situation has NOTHING to do with Obama. If anything you can blame the last 8 years of the ever effecient Republican rule.

12

 Sep 09, 2009 at 02:40 PM Steven Says:

Reply to #9  
FVNMS Says:

A very rich non-rocket scientist. Unfortunately (and I hope it's not true for Mr. Groves) most lottery winners lose all their Winnings because of lack of discipline and comprehension of monetary value. They spend like it's going out of style and eventually find themselves poor again. I would advise Mr. Groves to spend his first large sum on a financial planner. Then second - get the h$$l out of Harlem.

IF he is indeed the actual winner, don't forget, the story went to great lenghts to say it has NOT been confirmed. Plus this guy has been known to spin a couple of good stories. IF he is indeed the winner, he did a smart thing in not taking the payment in one lump sum. He'll be receiving 26 annual payments, so unlike the majority of past winners who have taken the lump sum payments, he won't fun out of cash THAT quickly.

13

 Sep 09, 2009 at 02:04 PM Anonymous Says:

The state should provide protection for winners like him whose lives become threatened because of the sudden acquisition in a dangerous environment.

14

 Sep 09, 2009 at 05:55 PM kopl Says:

the problem with taking 26 year payments is , that if the person dies then his childern or legal yorshim dont get anything, so it might be better to take all at once and hire a financel planer how to handle the situation

15

 Sep 09, 2009 at 07:48 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #1  
boro park yid Says:

I wish him good luck living in harlem with all that money!

Do you think he would consider moving to boro park and live in that "lavish" hotel on 47th street? I see him buying a house in Hamptons while the rest of us are stuck in the crappy parts of NYC.

16

 Sep 09, 2009 at 09:00 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #13  
Anonymous Says:

The state should provide protection for winners like him whose lives become threatened because of the sudden acquisition in a dangerous environment.

What else should the gov do?

And taking payments doesn't mean he will actually get payments, there companys that buy those payments.. He probaly won't be a ble to withstand the temptation. Imagine such wealth befalling such a person so sudden..

17

 Sep 09, 2009 at 08:24 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #8  
Anonymous Says:

he'd still have to pay taxes on it if Bush were in office.

Nonsense taxes were created by the liberal Democrats. Everyone knows that. Republicans really care about the poor people, otherwise why would poor rednecks and Jews vote for them!!

18

 Sep 09, 2009 at 09:33 PM happy! Says:

At least someone who needed the money , let's all fargin him congratulations!!

19

 Sep 09, 2009 at 09:20 PM happy! Says:

At least someone who needed the money , let's all fargin him congratulations!!

20

 Sep 10, 2009 at 03:34 PM yoely Says:

wow im so happy for him you thing he will give me some $$$$$$$$ ?????

21

 Sep 12, 2009 at 04:37 PM Larry Castro Says:

Reply to #6  
LIBERALISM IS A DISEASE!!!! Says:

I wonder how he will feel when more than half his winnings go to taxes. I wonder how how he will feel once he realizes HIS money is being stolen from him by Obama & his gang of crooks.

Better to have won something after Obama taxes .Even after taxes,James will still
get tens of millions of dollars to spend ! .

22

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