Man Orders TV Through Amazon, Receives Assault Rifle Instead

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Courtesy of Seth Horvitz

Receiving a large package in the mail is usually pretty exciting, especially if you expect it to hold that new flat-screen TV you ordered online.

That’s what D.C. resident Seth Horvitz was expecting when he found a box waiting for him outside his apartment Tuesday. But the long, narrow package couldn’t possibly contain the 39-inch television he’d ordered from an independent seller on Amazon. Maybe it was a TV stand or some other accessory, he thought. So he opened the box  — only to find an Army-style assault rifle. Wait … what?

(MORE: Will Amazon Take Over the World?)

After briefly contemplating himself holding the Sig Sauer SIG716 semiautomatic assault rifle now in his possession, Horvitz contacted D.C. police. Authorities deemed the weapon an illegally-shipped firearm and quickly confiscated it. But police weren’t the only ones disconcerted by the unsolicited weapon that showed up on Horvitz’s doorstep. In the wake of tragic gun violence in Wisconsin and Colorado over the past month, attributed to high-powered weapons, “It surprised me to see how easy it would be for a gun to show up on someone’s doorstep — not just a gun, but an assault weapon,” Horvitz told the Washington Post.

The error seems to have resulted from a labeling mix-up within the UPS system, Horvitz told TIME Thursday. The box was addressed to Horvitz, but the invoice he found inside indicated that the rifle was meant to go to a gun shop in Pennsylvania. The third-party Amazon seller has refunded Horvitz’s money and has also filed a claim with UPS. The original package Horvitz was expecting — the one containing his TV — is nowhere to be found.

MORE: TIME Cover: How Guns Won

9 comments
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Herman Goetjen
Herman Goetjen

It is a nice accurate hunting rifle,  Too bad they didn't send it to me.  Much rather have it than a flat screen TV.

syzito
syzito

Define assault rifle? There is no such thing as a semi-automatic assault rifle.

Simon Kaheru
Simon Kaheru

The TV is "nowhere to be found"? LOL! The guy who received it WANTED to call the cops to report that he got a 39" Sony instead of the Sig Sauer but is still glued to the Olympics, right?

[A]
[A]

I can totally see now how everyone's got guns -- wrong shipments! And I thought you were all gun-nuts.. Apologies, americans!

Raggedhand
Raggedhand

Does the Sig Sauer SIG716 come with a cable package?

Jason Hyatt
Jason Hyatt

Ok got it but that is not an Army style assault rifle you left wing, liberal, anti-gun finatics. We use Colt M4 carbines, that fire single shot and three round burst the one there is a single shot only, semi automatic. It is also not a high powered rifle, it fires a .223 cal (.003 mm larger then a .22 cal bullet) or better known as 5.56mm. If it was a rifle chambered in .308cal or 7.62mm then it would be a high powered rifle...this is weak. The reason it showed up there is probably as simple as the guy that used to live there did not update his address and had a FFL. The only reason you are mentioning this and the Colorado and Wisconsin cases is to push your own agena. This weapon, if it was there would have saved the victums, and those wack jobs used pistols not rifles. Please take the time educate yourself before writing BS to the American people.

CommonSense6586
CommonSense6586

It's spelled "fanatic", you come off as someone with no credibility if you can't spell. Sorry genius.

DonBixby
DonBixby

Well, the SIG516 does fire a 5.56mm bullet, but the SIG716 which is mentioned in the story fires a 7.62mm.  So, yes, high powered rifle.  Please take the time to read the story before... yadda yadda yadda