Amazon Driver Found Dead on Front Lawn After Being Attacked by Dogs

"The deceased male had a tremendous amount of trauma to his body consistent with canine bites," the police said, but did not yet announce an official cause of death.
Image: Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

An Amazon delivery driver was found dead in a front yard in Ray County, Missouri, on Monday night; authorities suspect that the driver may have been killed by dogs, according to Sheriff Scott Childers, who was on the scene. The news was first reported by Fox 4 Kansas City.


In a phone call, Childers told Motherboard that neighbors called the police after they noticed an Amazon truck idling on the street. 

"A little after 7 p.m. Central time, some neighbors contacted dispatch about an Amazon truck parked outside the residence for a couple hours. My deputies were dispatched to the residence. They made it there at 7:30 p.m. When they got to the residence, they observed there was an Amazon van running with the window down," Childers said. "The house had a fenced-in yard with a gate that latched with a chain. As they took their flashlights and looked around and saw a male’s body in the yard between the house and the van [inside the fence]. And so they made entry into the yard to check on the male. At that time, they were approached by two dogs. One was a mastiff, the other was a German shepherd. Both were aggressive, baring teeth, coming at them, which made them think they would be attacked."

Childers said that one of the deputies shot the mastiff; both dogs then ran through a doggie door into the house. Childers says he then arrived on scene. "The male worker for Amazon was pronounced deceased. We contacted my detectives to work a death investigation and also contacted the coroner," Childers said. "Deceased male had a tremendous amount of trauma to his body consistent with canine bites. I can’t say the cause of death was the dogs until we have an official autopsy report tomorrow, but it’s a possibility, we knew it was a possibility. I went ahead and I entered the residence, [the dogs] were aggressive, so I shot both of them, killed both of them on scene."


Are you an Amazon delivery driver? Get in touch with the author of this article at or securely on Signal: 202-505-1702

Childers said an autopsy will be done on the delivery driver to determine the official cause of death and that a necropsy would be done on the dogs to determine if they have any human flesh in their stomachs or inside their mouths. 

“We’re deeply saddened by tonight’s tragic incident involving a member of our Amazon family and will be providing support to the team and the driver’s loved ones. We are assisting law enforcement in their investigation,” an Amazon spokesperson told Motherboard. Amazon also told Fox 4 KC that it is "looking into this horrible tragedy."

There are many anecdotes to suggest that delivering for Amazon can be a dangerous job. Last year, Motherboard published an investigation that showed that Amazon drivers have reported being held up at gunpoint, attacked by dogs, and threatened by customers. Drivers—who often work for quasi-independent companies that contract with Amazon—have told Motherboard that they are instructed to drive dangerously in order to meet Amazon's high quotas. Last year, six workers died in a warehouse after it was struck by a tornado. Workers say Amazon did not let them leave.

Amazon drivers also repeatedly report getting stuck in the snow in the winter, being surveilled by safe driving technology while being asked to deliver a large amount of packages in a shift, and driving for many hours at a time as they work to hit their quotas. A recent report from Data & Society showed that homeowners’ surveillance cameras, which are often made by Amazon’s Ring, are used as a tool of control over delivery drivers. 

Childers said that before he was attacked, the driver delivered the package: "There was an Amazon package. The Amazon driver did deliver the package. It was sitting at the front door."

Update: This article has been updated with comment from Amazon.