Don't mess with Iowa and its lottery tickets! To be fair, you shouldn't steal anything from anyone or anywhere. I didn't realize how serious stealing lottery tickets really is. Not only can you receive a fine of up to $10,245 but it's also considered a felony and could land you 5 years in prison. When I found out about this couple, it hit me that they'd committed Forgery and Fraud. It's not just theft.

According to Legis Iowa Code 99G.36

A person who, with intent to defraud, falsely makes, alters, forges, utters, passes, redeems, or counterfeits a lottery ticket or share or attempts to falsely make, alter, forge, utter, pass, redeem, or counterfeit a lottery ticket or share, or commits theft or attempts to commit theft of a lottery ticket or share, is guilty of a class “D” felony. Any person who influences or attempts to influence the winning of a prize through the use of coercion, fraud, deception, or tampering with lottery equipment or materials shall be guilty of a class “D” felony.

This California couple found out the hard way just how serious stealing a few lottery tickets can be.

KCCI via YouTube
KCCI via YouTube

Robert and Samantha are a couple from California who allegedly stole Iowa lottery scratch-off tickets from a convenience store in Fort Dodge, according to KCCI. Instead of celebrating the Christmas holiday with their friends and family, they decided to break into the store and use a crowbar to gain access to the lottery ticket kiosk.

After stealing the tickets and finding out they had winning tickets that added to $135, they decided to try and cash them in. They presented tickets marked as stolen during a burglary at a gas station in Sac City on December 29 and their run was over.

According to KCCI, Robert now faces 16 counts of lottery theft and a burglary charge while Samantha faces 17 lottery theft charges. If found guilty, they will be considered felons. All of that over a measly $135. Their lives are ruined for the foreseeable future. They could go out to eat together, basically, only twice for $135. I guess I hope they needed the money.

"I'll take, Things That Aren't Worth It for $135, Alex."

Car Stickers That Make You A Target to Criminals

Biggest Winners in the History of the Lottery in Iowa

These are the people who have cashed the biggest checks since the Iowa Lottery debuted in the summer of 1985.

Gallery Credit: Iowa Lottery

More From 97.7 KCRR