LAPD’s robot dog. (Photo: Interesting Engineering)
LOS ANGELES – A robot dog named SPOT succeeded in helping the police resolve a crisis situation on a bus in Los Angeles. One of the passengers identified as carrying a firearm was able to be incapacitated.
The incident began at 3:45 a.m. local time Wednesday when a passenger noticed a firearm at the feet of a man who appeared to be asleep on the bus. The passenger then reported it to the driver. The driver finally decided to stop the bus at the intersection of Melrose and Western Avenues and let off other passengers.
According to CBS News, LAPD personnel and a SWAT team who received a report arrived at the scene around 4:45 a.m. and attempted to communicate with the man, who was unresponsive and continued to sleep.
Police then used the SPOT robot dog to take a closer look at the man and observe the situation inside the bus. Several users shared several clips of incidents of robot dogs helping police in X.
The robot, controlled remotely by SWAT team members, approached the bus and entered through the door. Then, move around the bus and send a live video broadcast to the officers.
The robot also used a loudspeaker to talk to the gunman and persuade him to surrender. After about an hour, the man finally got up and got off the bus and was immediately arrested by the police. From the perpetrator’s hands, the police also confiscated a semi-automatic firearm and stated that no one was injured in this incident.
The robot dog that helped the LAPD end the incident was one of the controversial devices approved for use by the force earlier this year. This decision was protested by the public, who were concerned about the potential misuse and militarization of robot dogs by the police.
This robot dog is produced by Boston Dynamics, a company owned by Hyundai. The robot dog, worth USD 278 thousand, was donated to the LAPD by the LA Police Foundation. “The QUGV robot is a versatile and agile robot that can assist in situations that are too risky for human officers,” the LAPD said.