In Florida, the state governor is considering a bill that would keep lottery winners’ names secret by law.
One Florida resident who has come out in support of the new law is Dorice Donegan Moore.
Dorice, known to her friends as "Dee Dee,” says that publicising the names of big lottery winners “puts a target on them”. And Dorice should know, because in 2009 she befriended a $30million lottery winner, swindled him out of his money and then murdered him, burying his body under a concrete patio.
She’s currently behind bars in Hillsborough County, Florida, serving a sentence of life without the possibility of parole.
Abraham Lee Shakespeare was an illiterate casual labourer who borrowed a couple of dollars from a mate to buy a lottery ticket in November 2006.
The ticket turned out to be a huge winner. Abraham was offered a $17 million lump sum or a million dollars every year for 30 years. He went for the lump sum.
Apart from a house, a mid-priced car and Rolex Abraham didn’t spend much of his newfound wealth. He despaired of people asking him for a handout: "They don't take no for an answer," he said.
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That is, until he met Dee Dee. She persuaded Abraham to start a business with her, and then withdrew a million dollars from the company’s accounts and bought herself two luxury cars and an expensive holiday.
In November 2009, after they hadn’t seen him for over six months, Abraham’s family reported him missing.
By this time Dee Dee was living in Abraham’s house, and using his phone to keep up the pretence that he was alive. She raised suspicions, though, by sending text messages when the real owner of the phone couldn’t read or write.
After police began to investigate, Dee Dee offered to buy a $200,000 home for one of his ex-girlfriends on the condition that she told detectives she had seen him alive.
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Police asked Dee Dee how she had ended up owning Abraham’s house and other assets, and she said she’d bought them from him, claiming there was no paper trail because she’d paid in cash.
In December 2009, Dee Dee paid one of Abraham’s friends, Gregory Smith, to call the dead man's mother pretending to be her son.
Smith decided to co-operate with police and introduced an undercover detective, Mike Smith, to Dee Dee as part of a sting operation. Mike, posing as a criminal, agreed to take the blame for Abraham’s murder in exchange for $50,000.
As part of the supposed plan, Mike said he needed to know where Abraham’s body was buried. Dee Dee showed him, and also gave him the murder weapon – a .38 Smith and Wesson revolver.
Two days later police recovered Abraham’s badly-decomposed body from under a concrete slab behind a home in Hillsborough County. He had been shot twice.
By the time the body was found there was nothing left of the lottery jackpot win. “The money was like a curse to him,” Dee Dee said. “And now it's become a curse to me."
A week later Dee Dee was arrested. She told police that drug dealers had killed Abraham, grabbing her gun out of an open safe to use as a weapon.
She pleaded not guilty but, after a lengthy trial, was found guilty of murder and is expected to spend the rest of her life behind bars.
After passing sentence Judge Emmett Battles called Dee Dee "the most manipulative person" he had ever seen, describing her as "cold, calculating and cruel".
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