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$11m jackpot just a 'reset' message, says casino

Incontinent one-armed bandit ruins couple's retirement

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An American couple were left pondering the nature of fate and fruit machine electronics last week when a "reset" slashed their jackpot from $11m to a more manageable $1627.82.

MaryAnn and Jim McMahon had been shovelling their shrapnel into the fruit machine at the the Wildwood Casino in Cripple Creek, Colorado when they hit the jackpot. Sort of.

An initial prize of $1,627.82 was shown, but then the somewhat schizophrenic machine flashed up the letters CURRENT before flipping up $11,600,600.01, then switching between the two figures.

When the McMahons asked casino workers where they could collect their $11m, and presumably whether they could upgrade their hotel room, anxious staffers said the machine was clearly misbehaving and they'd have to take it apart.

The incontinent and now dismembered one-armed bandit was promptly handed over to the State gaming authorities, who promptly declared that the McMahons had won the $1627, but not the big one.

A spokesman told local TV station KWGN that "They actually won $1627.82. The $11 million was what we call a 'reset value'. It's what the jackpot would have been after the prize was claimed."

The McMahons were sceptical to say the least, with Jim opining to KWGN: "If you do hit a jackpot are they going to come up with another story? It's a malfunction? It's not right." ®

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