Bill allowing big lottery winners to remain anonymous heads to D - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Bill allowing big lottery winners to remain anonymous heads to Deal's desk

Lottery tickets sold at a convenience store (Source: WALB) Lottery tickets sold at a convenience store (Source: WALB)
Craigory Burch, 20, takes a photo with his lottery check (Source: WALB) Craigory Burch, 20, takes a photo with his lottery check (Source: WALB)
Advocates say this bill will protect winners from being the targets of crime. (Source: WALB) Advocates say this bill will protect winners from being the targets of crime. (Source: WALB)
ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

A new state bill to keep big lottery jackpot winners anonymous is awaiting Governor Nathan Deal's signature.

Winners who win $250,000 or more and submit a written request can prevent their name from being published.

Proponents of this bill say these big jackpot winners are prime targets for criminals and the bill could save lives. 

Just a couple of years ago a Fitzgerald man was killed months after winning a jackpot of more than $430,000.

Craigory Burch, 20, was shot to death in a home invasion robbery in January 2016. 

Six people were arrested in connection with his murder.

Advocates say this bill will protect winners from being the targets of crime.

Six states already allow winners to not come forward for big wins.

But open government advocacy groups have criticized the proposal.

They believe it is a bad idea to allow the government to hand out millions to private citizens without a public record.

The state Senate passed the bill 50-4.

The Georgia House passed the bill 173-1.

You can read a copy of the bill here.

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