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erik bragg lottery winner

Catfish or Powerball winner? Internet freaks out over skateboarder’s claim

Pro skateboarder Erik Bragg posted on Instagram Wednesday night claiming he won the lottery. (Photo: Screenshot)

People are freaking out over whether or not skateboarder Erik Bragg won a cut of the Powerball jackpot on social media.

Shortly after the numbers for the record $1.6 billion Powerball jackpot were announced Wednesday night, Bragg posted a photo on Instagram claiming that he purchased the winning ticket in California.

A photo posted by Erik Bragg (@thisguysthelimit) on Jan 13, 2016 at 8:10pm PST

In the post, Bragg poses with a lottery ticket that has the winning numbers.

“OMG I WON $1.5 BILLION. I’m posting this in case anyone tries to jack me this is proof! Look it up, I bought in chino hills where I grew up! #powerball,” Bragg said. USA TODAY has reached out to Bragg for comment.

As of Thursday morning, the post had over 73,000 comments and almost 90,000 likes. The comments range from questions of what photoshop app Bragg used to congratulations and requests for free skateboards.

Here’s where the plot thickens.

Within an hour of posting the Instagram photo, a Twitter account purporting to be Bragg popped up on social media and other unverified accounts soon followed.

Twitter accounts with the handles @ErikBragg_lotto,@ThepowerballGuy and @DudeDupeer tweeted that anyone who followed or retweeted the account would get a small cut of the lottery winnings.

One of the accounts claiming to be Bragg tweeted, “No one needs all this money! I’ll give $1000 to every person who RTs this tweet! Must be following! #Powerball.” Another said, “Not selfish! Giving away 1,000 to everyone who retweets this and follows me within 24 hours! #Powerball#giveback.”

The tweet has almost 16,000 retweets.

Not selfish! Giving away 1,000 to everyone who retweets this and follows me within 24 hours! #Powerball#givebackpic.twitter.com/ZQnXN9RjLV

The overwhelming consensus on social media is that the accounts are fake, but A+ for effort!

I don’t know what’s more funnier #ErikBragg tricking the world or the group in Tampa who spent $175,000 on tickets 😭😭😭 #Powerball

if every fake erik bragg account pitched in a dollar we could get another $1.5 billion jackpot lmao #Powerball

folks, I won the lottery. That’s right it’s me. Erik Bragg from Chino Whatever, California. RT for 89 cents. God bless.

Another person tweeted that changing your Twitter handle to Erik Bragg could result in more followers. A win-win, obviously.

Why has everyone changed their Twitter names to ‘Erik Bragg’ saying they’ve won the lottery just to gain more followers haha

The catfish accounts appear to be using photos from Bragg’s public Instagram account. While Bragg has yet to confirm whether he is actually the winner or just the victim of yet another Internet catfish ring, one thing is certain, a winning ticket was purchased in Chino Hills, Calif., where Bragg grew up.

Winning Powerball tickets were also sold in Munford, Tenn. and Melbourne Beach, Fla.

People are freaking out over whether or not skateboarder Erik Bragg won a cut of the Powerball jackpot on social media.

Eastside

Eric First, Eastside Staff January 29, 2016 Leave a Comment

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The odds of winning last Wednesday’s 1.6 billion dollar Powerball jackpot were one in 292.2 million. To put this into perspective, the odds of being struck by lightning once in a lifetime are just one in 3,000.

On Wednesday, however, America’s largest lottery jackpot in history had three tickets matching the winning numbers. So far, just one of the winners has come forward to claim his $528.8 million share of the prize.

John Robinson from Tennessee is the only confirmed winner, while each of the two other winning tickets sold in California and Florida are still yet to be redeemed.

Erik Bragg, a professional skateboarder, has gained national attention on social media following his Instagram post just minutes after the drawing.

“OMG I WON $1.5 BILLION. I’m posting this in case anyone tries to jack me this is proof! Look it up, I bought in chino hills where I grew up! #powerball,” wrote Bragg on his Instagram account @thisguysthelimit.

According to Bragg’s post, his ticket purchased in California for the Powerball matched the winning numbers in the exact order they were drawn. This post has received over 132,000 likes, 92,000 comments and his account now has 111,000 followers.

Following this post, many people went on Twitter, creating fake Erik Bragg accounts. These accounts promised as much as $1,000 to whomever retweeted and followed them within 24 hours. As a result, many people still hoping to get their hands on a share of the jackpot decided to promote these pages.

Within a few hours, thousands had been duped, including several Cherry Hill East students, only to realize that nobody would be sending them a check.

Speculations have now arisen nationwide as to whether Bragg is actually even the California winner of the $528.8 million dollars. Many people throughout the country now believe that the ticket is photo-shopped. On the left hand side of the ticket pictured in Bragg’s post, there are the letters A through E. This would indicate that five sets of number combinations would have been purchased for this given ticket; however, there is only the one winning combination next to the A. In the case that only one number combination was purchased on the ticket, there should just be a single A.

Kobe Tamburino (’18) and Nhat Tran (’18) are two students who initially believed the legitimacy of the picture. Neither of them did retweet the Twitter posts, though, because they were skeptical of the offer of free money.

“The picture looked real because he did such a great job when he photo-shopped it,” said Tran.

Tamburino is a firm believer that Bragg’s sole intention was for the photo-shopped picture to be a publicity stunt.

Tamburino said,“It is clear he wanted the fame.”

Bragg does in fact have experience in photoshop. Along with being a professional skateboarder, Bragg is also the director of the film “True: Plan B Skateboards” and fellow skateboarder Ryan Sheckler’s personal cameraman.

The names of lottery winners in California are required to be disclosed to the public once their tickets have been cashed. Winners must cash their tickets within 180 days after the drawing.

While Bragg claims to be the California lottery winner, it still remains to be seen which member of “The Golden State” will come forward with the ticket to the record-setting jackpot.

The odds of winning last Wednesday’s 1.6 billion dollar Powerball jackpot were one in 292.2 million. To put this into perspective, the odds of being struck by lightning once in a lifetime are just one in 3,000. On Wednesday, however, America’s largest lottery jackpot in history had three tickets matching the winning numbers. So far,…