Prior to March 20, 2022, Jose Lopez, a self-employed painter from Lynnwood, Washington, was already no stranger to success at the Tulalip Resort Casino, approximately 30 minutes’ drive from his home. Lopez had previously won a slot machine jackpot worth $20,000, but that windfall merely served as prologue to the events that unfolded early on a Sunday morning, shortly after midnight.
At the behest of his girlfriend, Lopez, who reportedly usually played ‘Triple Fortune’ and ‘Buffalo Gold’ slot machines, tried his luck on ‘Golden Charms’, which is a 3×5-reel, 50-payline progressive jackpot slot. For a $5 bet, Lopez, 39, lined up the five golden fish required to win the ‘Grand’ progressive jackpot on a single payline and scooped a massive $2.37 million. In so doing, he beat the previous record for a slot machine payout at Tulalip Resort Casino, $1.1 million, also set on Golden Charms two years earlier. In fact, registered the highest slot machine payout ever reported in Washington State.
Dan Miller, spokesperson for the AAA Four Diamond resort, said, ‘He [Lopez] took home some cash, but the majority was in a check. They [The State of Washington] withhold 25% in tax.’ The tax deduction amounted to an eye-watering sum of $592,500, or thereabouts, but the somewhat reluctant gambler still profited to the tune of $1.78 million.