MOUNT DORA, Fl. (PIX11) — A convicted sex offender is now a multi-millionaire.
Timothy Dale Poole, 43, spent three years in prison after allegations that he sexually battered a 9-year-old boy in 1999, Click Orlando reported.
Poole denied the allegations, but pleaded guilty to attempted sexual battery after reaching a plea bargain. The man was sentenced to 13 months in prison, which he already served in jail. The judge also sentenced Poole to 10 years of sex offender probation and required him to register as a sex offender.
In 2003, Poole’s probation was revoked and he was sent to prison for three years. Since his release in 2006, Poole avoided trouble with the law, the website reported.
On Saturday night, the man won $3 million on a Florida Lottery scratch-off ticket purchased from a 7-Eleven in Mount Dora, which will be received as a one-time, lump-sum payment of $2,219,807.90.
“It may be hard for some to believe, but sometimes people are wrongly accused,” Poole told Click Orlando in November.
Poole’s friend Floyd Snyder stands by the man’s good character.
“He’s a very positive person. Very Kind. Giving. I think that’s why he won. It’s Christmastime and the dude deserves a break,” Snyder told the website.
Florida Lottery removed Poole’s photo from their website after learning about his past, Orlando Sentinel reported.
“We chose to not draw additional attention to this particular winner,” Shelly Gerteisen, communications manager, told the website.
There are currently no Florida laws preventing convicted criminals of collecting lottery winnings.
In Massachusetts, however, legislators are considering a bill to prevent sex offenders from collecting earnings after a $10 million winner used the money to attract a new victim, Orlando Sentinel reported.