NYPD-D2: New York City’s Police Department Deploying Robocops to Fight Crime
With New York City backsliding into the bad old days of crime, Mayor Eric Adams is looking to an increase in technology to bring criminals to justice.
To that end, Adams announced the Big Apple will soon be patrolled by Digidog, a $74,000 robotic police dog created by Boston Dynamics.
Using the dog in the city was dismissed by the former mayor, Bill De Blasio, who initiated cuts to police department funding and heeded calls that a robotic dog smacks of aggressive policing.
But Digidog was given an “attaboy” by Adams on Tuesday. “A few loud people were opposed to it and we took a step back. That is not how I operate,” the city’s new mayor, a former New York Police Department police officer, said at a press conference. “We are scanning the globe to find technology that will assure this city is safe.”
To that end, Adams will also deploy Knightscope’s K5 Autonomous Security Robot, a cone-shaped droid that looks like the baby of an R2 unit from Star Wars and a Dalek from Doctor Who. The officials argued it’s a visual deterrent and can also provide “situational awareness” to flesh-and-blood cops.
“The use of these technologies will be transparent, consistent and always done in collaboration with the people that we serve,” Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell added, explaining the robocops are part of the NYPD’s history of leveraging technology to “safeguard a modern city.” New York was among the first cities to take fingerprints and mug shots and to adopt a 911 emergency call system, he explained.
The K5 will be on the beat in Times Square and the Times Square subway station this summer.
The reason I am excited about this is because it will keep our folks in uniform safe in dangerous situations.