Convicted Robber, Now Millionaire
January 21, 2008 10:40pm CST
I read this article today about a man from Massachusetts that robbed a bank back in 2006 and was put on probation for five years. One of the stipulations of his probation that we was not allowed to gamble or purchase lottery tickets. He ended up buying a scratch ticket that turned out to be worth $1 million dollars. A judge has now ruled that since this was a minor violation of his probation he gets to keep the money he won. So would you have let him keep the money? If not, what would you have made him do with it?
1 Mar 08
I definitely don't think he should have been allowed to keep the money, particularly since it was a breach of his probation for a crime which featured stealing money. I think the money should have been put toward reimbursing the bank he stole money from, or its customers, though I do think it would be a cruel irony if they distributed it amongst other criminals on probation who follow the rules of theirs.
13 Feb 08
You know, I can kind of get that this guy may have robbed a bank b/c he really needed the money. Are you kidding me, it's expensive to live, so maybe it's good that he won the money, like a Hollywood movie or something. I'm trying to get the warm fuzzy take on the whole thing. The breach of probation definitely should be enforced, and the charity fine is an awesome idea, but can we expect the government to be that progressive? I'm just exploring different sides of this. I can't actually change anything about it, so come what may. And I so do wish I had the money!!! hahaha
• United States
12 Feb 08
This is a weird story indeed. One, why would they not convict someone from a Robbery, unless they were just an accomplis? And isn't Scratch tickets considered gambling? I know here in the state of WA it is. I feel that this is breaking the probation order, and that maybe the court and the state of Massachusetts should request him using some of the $$ he won to pay fines it. Maybe this is drawing a fine line here, but I think maybe next time they need to stipulate more of what they can and cannot do.
12 Feb 08
There was never a debate about whether or not the man violated his probation by buying the scratch ticket, but the courts ruled that it was a minor infraction. I agree with you completely, an infraction is an infraction and if it is not a big deal to buy a scratch ticket after your on probation for robbing a bank then why make it a stipulation in the first place? If it's important enough to make it a part of his probation than he should have to deal with the consequences of breaching that. And I think a fine would have been a perfect way in this case to administer restitution, possibly with a stipulation that if he goes back to jail he forfeits the rest of the money. I'm not usually one to be tough on crime, quite the contrary. But I do think that this guy got off way too easy the first time and it just doesn't sit well with me that even with this (albeit minor) violation of his probation conditions he gets of scott free and is probably richer than I will ever be.
• United States
22 Jan 08
Now this is a crazy twisted story. I mean the dude got luck for one. That was pure luck and the judge gave him a slap on the wrist. It bet he'd go nuts if he wasn't allowed to keep the money. Well being a judge there's nothing much to tell him what to do with it, but if I was harsh to not let him have the money I would do that - I mean for one he robbed a bank - imagine how many innocent lives were at stake - and he got 5 years probation for that? Lucky him because out here you get convicted for robbing a bank that's prison time and it's not 5 years probation with a felony - that's prison time, with a felony and chances of getting parole.