Randy Howry comments on lawsuit filed by fitness center

April 13, 2010 | In The News, Randy Howry

Two years ago, 4-year-old Colin Holst drowned in a Life Time Fitness swimming pool surrounded by adults and lifeguards.

After being hit with a $25 million wrongful death lawsuit by Colin’s parents, Life Time is suing Colin’s mother and two of her friends, accusing them of trespassing, fraud, and breach of contract. The company claims that Jana Holst, Jennie Stafford, and Deborah Stack did not follow the gym’s guest policy and that the women should pay damages, court costs, and all other expenses related to the lawsuits surrounding Colin’s death.

Stack and Stafford’s lawyer, Damon Robertson , calls the lawsuit outrageous. (more…)

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Judge orders some of stolen lottery winnings returned; store clerk still at large

February 17, 2010 | In The News, Randy Howry, Sean Breen

By Steven Kreytak, Austin American-Statesman Staff

A judge in Austin on Tuesday ordered that $395,000 seized in a lottery fraud investigation be given to Willis Willis, a Dallas-area maintenance man who prosecutors say was the rightful winner of a $1 million jackpot last year.

“I feel great right now,” said Willis, 68, outside court. He wants to use his winnings to pay off medical bills, to pay the college tuition bills for the youngest of his six daughters and to buy a new set of golf clubs. He does not plan to work again.

The order by state District Judge Bob Perkins comes as authorities are continuing to search for Pankaj Joshi, a convenience store clerk in the Dallas suburb of Grand Prairie who prosecutors say stole Willis’ ticket in May when Willis asked him to check if it was a winner. (more…)

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Willis Willis wins lottery claim with help of HowryBreen

January 17, 2010 | In The News, Randy Howry

From KXAN – NBC News affiliate Austin

Listen to theKVET Interview here.

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Commentary: Lottery panel has bigger fish to fry?

December 1, 2009 | In The News, Randy Howry

By Peggy Fikac, Houston Chronicle

AUSTIN — Some people saw a little irony in the Texas Lottery Commission’s recent step toward potentially adding Powerball to the state’s gambling lineup.

Watching from the audience was a man who, according to prosecutors, was cheated of his million-dollar jackpot by a store clerk when he played Texas’ current multi-state game, Mega Millions.

Months after the ticket was cashed in, the clerk has been indicted and is considered a fugitive. Willis Willis, described by prosecutors as the rightful owner of jackpot proceeds he never was able to claim, has said he’s broke. And the Lottery Commission’s general counsel (according to Willis’ lawyers) has told him the clerk accused of fraudulently claiming the prize is considered the winner for agency purposes because he had the ticket. (more…)

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Man again asks Lottery to end his “nightmare”

November 24, 2009 | In The News, Randy Howry

By Peggy Fikac, Houston Chronicle

AUSTIN — Saying he’s living “a dream and a nightmare at the same time,” Willis Willis tried again Tuesday to persuade the Texas Lottery Commission to pay him a million-dollar jackpot obtained by an indicted store clerk.

“I’m broke. (I) have no money, no income whatsoever, because I haven’t been working,” Willis, 67, his voice quavering, told reporters before he walked into commission headquarters. “This money would mean a lot to me and my daughters as far as the holidays, and I hope I get it.” (more…)

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Lottery Commission won’t pay Grand Prairie man $1 million prize

November 3, 2009 | In The News, Randy Howry

By Avi Selk, Dallas Morning News

As if things weren’t confusing enough for a man named Willis Willis.

During a meeting on Monday, the Texas Lottery Commission told the 67-year-old Grand Prairie man that he is not the rightful winner of a $1 million prize – even though its own investigators have told police he bought the winning ticket.

The real winner, the commission said, is the convenience store clerk who was indicted on charges that he cheated Willis out of his ticket in May. The clerk, 25-year-old Pankaj Joshi, is believed to have fled the country. (more…)

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