When Moesha Rhodes returned home after taking the kids to their grandma’s house to open their Christmas presents, she had some offbeat news for her husband of 9 years. “Honey, you won’t believe what kind of ticket I got from speeding,” she said. Fearing he would have to return some toys to pay off the fine, Terry Rhodes had the same surprised look on his face as his wife did when she got the ticket. A lottery ticket that is! She explained to her husband that Melbourne police officers concentrated along the Wickham Road commercial corridor doled out warnings to speeders and other traffic violators, and to spread a little holiday cheer, they issued scratch off game-tickets in which they paid for with their own funds. Sgt. Jamie Rocque said, “We’re just doing a little bit of a different technique.”
Upon hearing this, Mr. Rhodes grabbed the car keys and said he’ll be back. 30 minutes later, he came back with a lottery ticket of his own. “No stores are open on Christmas. Where you get that from?” asked Moesha. Terry told her from speeding. “For the next dozen days I would be called all out my name: Moron! Idiot! Imbecile! I just kept quiet,” Terry said.
Then on January 7, 2014 that lottery ticket proved to be a big winner. ONE MILLION DOLLARS BIG! Suddenly, his wife was calling him her hero. “I just remember him getting all pop-eyed when I was talking to him about my ticket, which didn’t win shit by the way. I don’t know what he seen. The future? How many people would take a risk like that? Wow! He’s a true visionary. I just can’t believe what looked like a stupid move turned out to be the greatest decision ever,” she said.
However, with money, comes problems. The officer who handed Terry the lottery ticket wants a cut. “He reached out to me and said he wants what’s his. I asked him how much did he pay for the ticket and he said $3. Then I said okay I will give you $3. He laughed and said he wants half! I told him hell no. He got irate and started cursing me out. He threatened to throw me in jail for the rest of my life and that he was gone rape my wife,” Terry exclaimed.
Terry has told us that the aforementioned conversation has frightened him to the point that he plans to get out what he calls a “police state” as soon as he gets his money. He quit his job and made his wife do the same. He took his children out of school. He has put everyone on “house arrest.” He said, “We’re not going anywhere. No one’s going outside until the press calls me to take a photo with the big check. They probably got my picture hanging up in the precinct captioned ‘Wanted.’ ”
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•Melbourne police issue lottery tickets during Christmas traffic stops