You Be The Judge: A Potentially Booby-trapped Shotgun Reported to Law Enforcement

    Pistol cartridge found inside a shotgun receiver

    A post by Facebook’s Tap Rack Bang on Thursday shows a pistol cartridge allegedly inserted into the buttstock of a Winchester 1200 or 1300 shotgun. The true intention or mishap isn’t yet known, but the incident was allegedly reported to BATFE and a local police department. The original incident reportedly took place the second week of September.

    Per Tap Rack Bang’s post:

    A bad prank, a booby trap, or a strange set of circumstances? These photos are of a shotgun purchased online and shipped to a dealer in VA. The BATFE was notified when it was realized the receiver was modified to hold a pistol round aimed at the person firing the weapon. The weapon was loaded with a .380 ACP round. The trigger group obscured the round until the weapon was broken down for inspection. When chambering the shell the weapon would be cycled with the slide action bar coming into contact with the primer on the pistol round pointed at the shooter. It had marks from being struck but the round did not discharge. Had it fired it was aligned with the top of the pistol grip stock and would have possibly struck the shooter in the face. This is obscure but still a little scary.

    With over 2,500 shares and 400+ comments in the first 24 hours, there appeared to be a mix of alarm and skepticism on the page. A few seemed certain that images are a hoax, while others questioned the efficacy of a backwards bullet in a wood stock. Tap Rack Bang admins commented several times that the images are straight from a police bulletin.

    Two commenters indicated first-hand knowledge of the incident and one stated to TFB that the cartridge was in-fact a .32 ACP.  According to the source, “When [the gun store] received it the gun wouldn’t cycle a round and they gave it to a buddy of mine who is a gunsmith to figure out why and he found [the cartridge] after trying to cycle it half a dozen times. There was a big dent about .5 mm from the primer. [M]y buddy is very lucky.”

    TFB has reached out to the page and will update this post with the police bulletin or other new information as it is received.

    Image showing the action bar nearly striking the primer

    Corey R. Wardrop

    Corey R. Wardrop is the Museum Curator for the Institute of Military Technology in Titusville, Florida where he manages one of the finest, if not the finest, firearms collections in the country. Corey is a former OIF infantry Marine and has worked professionally in the firearms industry for over 20 years. In 2014 he obtained an unrelated Bachelor of Science degree from one of the nation’s leading diploma mills. Through his work at IMT he is currently studying CAD design with an emphasis in reverse engineering rare firearms.
    Corey asks forgiveness for his novice-level photographs and insists they are improving dramatically thanks to certified rockstar Corey can be reached at [email protected] and always appreciates suggestions for future articles.
    For the record, Corey felt incredibly strange writing this bio in the third person.