Everyone knows about the current rise of the killer robots, metal assassins able to crush puny meatsacks as easily as one might despatch a troublesome fly. But now there is a new development - robots which seek to negotiate with troublesome fleshies rather than mowing them down like so much grass.
The news comes courtesy of the Glenwood Springs Post Independent of Colorado, reporting on a tense nine-hour armed standoff between cops and a man, 61, thought to be packing a brace of handguns.
"Around 40" plods including bomb-disposal squads and a "special operations unit" surrounded the house in which the pistol-packing oldtimer had "barricaded" himself, but were thwarted in their attempts to open negotiations. The middle-aged malefactor had "disconnected his home phone and damaged his cell", according to the Post Independent.
“Our concern was that he would use the gun on himself, or if the officers went into the home, that he would use the gun on the officers,” local top cop Brian Kozak told the paper.
Abortive attempts to negotiate using a "bullhorn" and by hurling a phone through a window followed, but the irascible gunman would not respond.
Fleshy cops baffled, it was time to send in the droids. A robot furnished by the county bomb squad was duly despatched into the house "to negotiate with the man". Unarmed except for cameras and loudspeakers, the plucky mechanoid negotiator "located the man in the living room" according to Kozak.
Having set the heavily armed 61-year-old at his ease, the droid was "able to safely negotiate the man into protective custody". The unnamed citizen, at last report, was at a nearby medical facility for psychological evaluation.
Meanwhile the police and their robot negotiator doubtless retired to the station for celebratory donuts and battery-charging. ®