If there was an emergency and you saw a police robot patrolling the area, a reasonable person would expect that simply pushing its emergency alert button would call for help. That's what a California woman reportedly tried to do. In reality, the robot told her to get out of the way and carried on with its business. According to NBC News, Cogo Guebara noticed the police robot when a fight broke out in the parking lot of Salt Lake Park. However, despite pressing the emergency alert button multiple times, the robot merely asked Guebara to step aside and continued to scoot along its preprogrammed path, occasionally telling people to keep the park clean.
At the Stanford shopping center in Palo Alto, California, there is a new sheriff in town – and it's an egg-shaped robot. Outside Tiffany & Co, an unfortunate man holding a baby finds himself in the robot's path. It bears down on him, a little jerkily, like a giant Roomba. The man dodges but the robot's software is already trying to avoid him, so they end up on a collision course. "I've seen Terminator," the man says, half to himself and half to the amused crowd, "and that is some Skynet-ass shit."
The Huntingdon Park police near Los Angeles has rolled out several robot police in public spaces around the city. However, reports and testimonies reveal that these autonomous police robots may not serve any purpose at all. The inefficiency of the supposed virtual police that secure the parks in Los Angeles (instead of actual human police officers) was highlighted when the Knightscope police robot ignored a distressed woman. A woman in a park near Los Angeles attempted to summon the futuristic police robot when a fight broke out in the area. Instead of responding to the distress call of the woman, the K5 model named "HP RoboCop," ignored her report and told her to "step out of the way," as earlier reported in NBC News.
A security, crime-fighting robot allegedly hit a 16-month boy on the head and ran over him at a shopping mall in Palo Alto. Tiffany Teng told KGO-TV that she and her family were visiting the Stanford Shopping Center on Thursday when the robot, also known as an autonomous data machine, suddenly hit her son's head and caused him to fall to the ground. While still on the ground, the robot ran over his right foot, which became swollen, she told the news station. "He was crying like crazy and he never cries. He seldom cries," Teng told KGO-TV, pointing out her son also suffered a scrape.
The future of policing is five feet tall and weighs about 400 pounds. Don't worry, it's not what you think. Knightscope calls its a fully autonomous data security machine. It is meant to augment security and law enforcement with the tools of modern information technology. K5 is not supposed to be a gun-toting Robocop.