No jackpot-winning ticket was sold in Tuesday night's Mega Millions drawing worth an estimated $454 million, a lottery official said. Virginia Lottery spokesman John Hagerty told The Associated Press that because no one won the jackpot, it will increase to an estimated $508 million for the next drawing on Friday. With slightly better odds than the Powerball game, it's rare that nearly four months passes without someone winning a Mega Millions jackpot.

Time ran out Friday for a Mega Millions player to cash in a winning, $1 million ticket before it expired.

The deadline to present the ticket at state lottery headquarters in Baltimore was 4:30 p.m. The ticket was purchased in January at a Royal Farms convenience store in Dundalk, where signs were posted notifying the public about the "missing millionaire."

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Lottery officials said they don't know why the winner never showed up. The proceeds now go to the Unclaimed Prize Fund, which is used to supplement players' prizes in Keno and other lottery games.

There was $5.77 million in the fund as of the end of May.

Another $1 million winning ticket — this one from a Powerball drawing — is also about to lapse. It was purchased at a 7-Eleven on Annapolis Road in Bladensburg. It must be redeemed by 4:30 p.m. on July 13 or else it too will become worthless.

Winners of Maryland Lottery drawing games are given 182 days to collect their prizes. Winning tickets above $5,000 must be cashed at the lottery office rather than the store.

The lottery said it tried to reach the Dundalk winner by placing notices during drawings, notifying the media and alerting retailers — to no avail.

jebarker@baltsun.com

twitter.com/sunjeffbarker

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