A Detroit-area woman who gained notoriety by keeping her food stamps coming even after she won a million bucks in the Michigan Lottery’s Make Me Rich! game show was found dead in her house from a possible drug overdose.
Police found Amanda Clayton’s body in her home near Detroit. They didn’t release any more details, including who called them to her house or why they were there.
Clayton became the object of scorn nationwide after a news station learned she won the lottery in September 2011 but kept taking welfare benefits, saying she was still entitled to them because she needed help.
“I thought that they would cut me off, but since they didn’t, I thought maybe it was okay because I’m not working. I feel that it’s okay because I mean, I have no income and I have bills to pay. I have two houses.”
She went on a spending spree after winning the lottery, buying a new car and other goodies, but still thought she deserved the $200 a month in food stamps she was still getting. She claimed that since she took her winnings in a lump sum and had to pay taxes, she only got to pocket a bit over $500,000 of the winnings.
Seems a cool half-million boots you off the welfare rolls, though. Clayton was convicted of felony welfare fraud and sentenced to nine months of probation and ordered to pay back the $5,500 in food and medical assistance she pulled in after she became a millionaire.
Michigan law says if your income changes and you’re on welfare, you must report the changes in 10 days. Meanwhile, Clayton got food stamps from 2010-2012, and even though she had a job for four months in 2011, she didn’t report that to the state, either.