The San Francisco City Board of Supervisors passed a policy in its first vote last week that “allows police to use robots with lethal capabilities.” As soon as the news came out, it caused widespread controversy in American society. Under external pressure, the San Francisco City Supervisory Committee voted on the 6th to temporarily not approve the use of these “killer robots” by the police.
An American sci-fi film released in 2014, it describes the psychosocial and moral dilemmas that half-human, half-mechanical policemen face when fighting crime. But now, the scenes in the film seem to be reflected in reality. On November 29, the San Francisco City Supervisory Board passed a new policy that allows the San Francisco police to use lethal robots under special circumstances.
According to the San Francisco Police Department, five of the agency’s 17 robots have been scrapped. Police have no plans to arm the robots with guns, but hope to be able to plant explosives on them and use the robots to contact, confuse or incapacitate suspects when their lives are in danger.
San Francisco Police Department Officer Lazar said that What we are going to use is not autonomous robots, trained officers are using these robots.
Despite the restrictions on permitted use, the policy was strongly opposed by some members of the oversight committee at the meeting.
Hilary Ronan, member of the San Francisco City Supervisory Committee said that I certainly don’t want the police to lose their lives, but the situation we are discussing will terrify the public.