A hefty police robot described by its human colleagues as "heavy equipment" charged into a besieged house through a barrage of stun grenades and choking riot gas at the weekend, before finding and forcefully apprehending a wanted man who had somehow managed to conceal himself inside a television.
The robot belonged to the Albuquerque police SWAT unit, which had been called to the premises after the suspect apparently barricaded himself inside on Sunday morning. It seems that ordinary plods, responding to a domestic violence call, had failed to get the besieged man to give himself up despite sending him more than 100 text messages suggesting that he should do so.
The text message barrage failed to undermine the man's intentions and willpower - perhaps he had a particular texty wife or girlf - and, as it turned out, merely motivated him to somehow cram himself into "an old TV cabinet".
Stumped, the human police at this point decided to send in the robot: and no ordinary robot this, but one describable as "heavy equipment" - perhaps of a similar type to the "strategic" siege robots which dealt with a not dissimilar situation in Ohio a couple of years back. Understandably worried, the fleshy cops covered their mechanical colleague's attack with a fusillade of "flash bang" stun ordnance and filled the house with tear gas for good measure.
None of this apparently discommoded the denizen hidden within the TV, but in due course the robot discovered him (doubtless using advanced sensors to detect his breathing, or perhaps the radio waves of his heartbeat, as predicted some years ago by top robot experts).
The tin cop dealt briskly with the lurking suspect, "dumping him out" of his hiding place, according to the Albuquerque Journal, and possibly ripping off his shirt during the process of subduing him (at any rate he was "shirtless" on being escorted from the building by supporting human police). It appears that the man was wanted for violating his parole, though it's not clear just how: perhaps he was forbidden to get inside pieces of audiovisual entertainment equipment at certain times of day.
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