A man who purchased the contents of a self-storage unit for $500 discovered a safe inside containing $7.5 million in cash, according to Dan and Laura Dotson, owners of American Auctioneers, the company that presided over the sale. The couple, who star on the A&E reality television series “Storage Wars,” learned of the discovery through a third party earlier this month and shared the story via Facebook video. They didn’t reveal the man’s identity or where the auction took place.
Dan Dotson was attending the Cars, Stars, Rock ‘N’ Roll & BBQ Festival in Indio, Calif., Nov. 2-4, when a woman whose husband works for the lucky auction winner approached Dan and shared the tale. According to the video, the man sought the services of two locksmiths before finding one who could or would open the safe.
After the discovery, the man was approached by an attorney representing the safe owner, who offered him $600,000 to return the money. He declined the original offer but settled on $1.2 million, refunding the remainder of the cash. It’s unclear how the attorney learned of the auction or tracked down the winner.
The Dotsons have asked their social media followers what they would do in this situation. Hundreds of people have responded, according to the source.
Dan Dotson founded American Auctioneers in Riverside, Calif., in 1983, to specialize in collectibles, dolls, furniture and pottery. After he met Laura in 1996, the couple expanded the company to handle self-storage auctions, business liquidations, estate sales, foreclosures and other sales. They launched Storageauctions.net, a database of online self-storage auctions, earlier this year.