The DOGO Robot is a light robot, armed with a 9 mm Glock pistol.
But unlike most tactical bots, Dogo is packing. Its integrated Glock 26 can fire at targets selected by its operator using a “Point & Shoot” interface, potentially ending an armed standoff without putting human officers in harm’s way.
When it was unveiled this past June at the Eurosatory 2016 defense show in Paris, Dogo was largely ignored by the press. Robotics is rife with vaporware and non-starters, including the long and storied failure of previous companies’ attempts at armed ground robots. If the U.S. military couldn’t find a combat mission for its trio of machine gun-laden patrol bots sent to Iraq in 2007, what demand is there for similar hardware among local law enforcement?
But less than a month after Dogo’s debut, the Dallas Police Department used a robot to kill a prime suspect — a first on American soil. Their target had killed five officers on the night of July 11 in what was the deadliest shooting attack on police in U.S. history. When the barricaded suspect wouldn’t surrender, officers strapped a pound of C4 explosives to a Remotec Andros Mark V-A1 bomb disposal bot, drove the charge towards him, and detonated.
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In that instant the use of remote lethal force became another tool available to American law enforcement and Dogo, which may have seemed irrelevant weeks earlier, was no longer a macabre punchline.