San Francisco Takes Aim at Killer Robots

Police robots will not be allowed to use deadly force in San Francisco — at least for now.

Supervisors voted unanimously last month to prohibit any use of deadly force by police robots pending further discussion by a committee. 

A previous vote permitting police robots to use lethal force under certain circumstances had received intense criticism. Those circumstances include imminent risk of death to members of the public or police. 

“We stopped the use of killer robots in San Francisco today," said Supervisor Hillary Ronen. "The public outcry helped six Supervisors fully appreciate the gravity of last week's vote and the numerous unanswered questions about both the ethics and practical implications of allowing police to use machines to kill human beings."