(Va. Lottery photo)

A Roanoke man is a million-dollar Virginia Lottery winner. Lottery officials say Jeffrey Mullen didn’t realize at first that his Golden Spades scratch-off ticket was one of the game’s three top winners. But it is, and he chose the cash option worth more than $560,000 before taxes.

From the Virginia Lottery: Jeffrey Mullen knew as soon as he scratched his Golden Spades ticket from the Virginia Lottery that he’d won something. However, the Roanoke man said he didn’t realize just how much he’d won. It turns out he’d won the $1 million top prize. He bought the winning ticket at the 7-Eleven at 1701 Ninth Street in Roanoke. He had the choice of taking the full $1 million prize over 30 years or a one-time cash option of $561,798 before taxes. He chose the cash option. In addition, the store receives a $10,000 bonus from the Lottery for selling the winning ticket.

Mr. Mullen is the third and final player to claim the top prize in Golden Spades (game #1620), which means the game is closed. It is the Virginia Lottery’s policy to close Scratcher games once the last top prize is claimed. The chances of winning the top prize in this game were 1 in 1,305,600. The chances of winning any prize were 1 in 3.4.  Mr. Mullen said he hopes to use his winnings to buy a new home and take care of family.