The Man Who Hoarded 17,700 Bottles Of Hand Sanitizer Just Donated Them After Being Vilified Online

purell hand sanitizer bottle sitting on table
John Moore / Getty Images

Chattanooga native Matt Colvin — who was vilified for purchasing over 17,700 bottles of hand sanitizer in the midst of the coronavirus crisis — has decided to donate his hoard after mass outrage. According to The New York Times, the items are currently being distributed to people in need across Kentucky and Tennessee.

As was previously covered by The Inquisitr, Colvin first became a public villain after an article in The New York Times chronicled how Colvin and his brother, Noah, traversed the state to buy up thousands of items like hand sanitizer to sell for profit on websites such as Amazon and eBay.

The fallout from the article was enormous. Colvin claimed that he immediately began to receive hate mail, including death threats that also targeted his wife and children. One man even went so far as to drive to Colvin’s home and knock on his door late at night to intimidate the former Amazon seller.

woman with hand sanitizer
  Hector Vivas / Getty Images

But Colvin’s troubles were not just rooted in public disdain. In addition to being blacklisted from Amazon and eBay, Colvin’s contract with his storage unit company was terminated. Even worse, the Tennessee attorney general sent him a cease-and-desist letter and opened an investigation into price gouging.

Colvin has since tried to express his remorse for hoarding the items, claiming that he did not realize the items would not likely be replenished in a timely fashion.

“I’ve been buying and selling things for 10 years now. There’s been hot product after hot product. But the thing is, there’s always another one on the shelf,” he said. “When we did this trip, I had no idea that these stores wouldn’t be able to get replenished.”

Colvin also offered a heartfelt apology to those who may have suffered from the high prices or inability to purchase the medical items.

“It was never my intention to keep necessary medical supplies out of the hands of people who needed them,” he said, crying.

“That’s not who I am as a person. And all I’ve been told for the last 48 hours is how much of that person I am,” he added.

Two-thirds of the items — which include hand sanitizer and wipes — are being distributed throughout Tennessee to those in need. The other third is being donated to the neighboring state of Kentucky, under the auspices of the Tennessee attorney general’s office.

Meanwhile, the coronavirus crisis continues to worsen. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention just issued a major announcement, urging all events with over 50 people to be canceled for the next eight weeks. As was covered by The Inquisitr, it is the most aggressive federal guideline mandate yet.