Feeds

Police ROBOT attacks and BURNS DOWN HOUSE

Fugitive tracked by heat sensors escapes in conflag

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

A mobile home in Tennessee was left a smoking ruin last month after it was attacked by a heavily armed police robot firing advanced triple-warhead gas grenades.

Despite the uncompromising tactics employed by the no-nonsense tin cop, and the fact that satellite and heat-sensing technology had apparently confirmed that the residence housed a dangerous fugitive tooled up with a deadly arsenal of weaponry, feds and local lawmen who combined to launch the assault were left egg-faced following the inferno. The ashy wreckage left behind following the robocop's orgy of mechanical destruction contained no trace of their quarry, who had plainly escaped during the mayhem.

The story comes to us through the trenchant journalism of the Bristol Herald Courier, which obtained a harrowing eyewitness account of the mechanical policeman's frenzied robotic rampage:

Will Chambliss swears a police robot burned his neighbor’s Ellis Road home to the ground weeks ago by blasting what looked like a javelin of flames into the living room ...

One bolt of fire dove at a spot several feet straight past the doorway, he said. Another ricocheted right, toward a corner of the room hidden from the view of his binoculars.

Local human police and federal operatives had unleashed the firebolt-spewing machine in a desperate attempt to end a day-long standoff at the "double-wide" mobile home in Blountville, Tennessee, after a high-speed pursuit of Junior Kemper Spradlin, 42, had led them to the scene. Spradlin was wanted for second-degree murder and was thought to have holed up in the dwelling with "multiple rifles and pistols".

It appears that regular fleshy cops, understandably reluctant to tangle with Spradlin personally, sent in their robotic colleague in an attempt to flush out the denned fugitive using riot-gas projectiles fired from a launcher. This led to the building's immolation, following which it was found that Spradlin had "somehow slipped away", according to the Herald Courier.

The plods had been certain that their quarry remained in the dwelling based on "GPS [was a tracking device of some type involved, perhaps?] and heat-sensor technology". The latter option at least could well have been confused by the blaze, perhaps aiding in Spradlin's escape.

There's some confusion over the exact type of ordnance used by the robot SWAT trooper in destroying the building, though it seems clear that it was a triplex CS gas grenade of some sort.

The local police incident report suggests that this was a "Flameless Tri-Chamber" unit suitable for use indoors (the triple chambers in this design keep the hot parts of the grenade confined while letting gas escape). However the Herald Courier, based on casings found at the scene, speculates that the robot may instead have launched a Triple Chaser unit designed to blow apart into three widely scattered gas-emitter subcanisters on initiation so as to achieve faster gas coverage over a wider area outdoors.

The Triple Chaser's manufacturer states that it should not be used indoors "due to its fire-producing capability".

Spradlin surrendered himself to (human) police two days later. ®

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
Win a year’s supply of chocolate (no tech knowledge required)
Over £200 worth of the good stuff up for grabs
Facebook's Zuckerberg in EBOLA VIRUS FIGHT: Billionaire battles bug
US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention contacted as site supremo coughs up
Red Bull does NOT give you wings, $13.5m lawsuit says so
Website letting consumers claim $10 cash back crashes after stampede
Down-under record: Australian gets $140k for pussy
'Tiffany' closes deal - 'it's more common to offer your wife', says agent
Internet finally ready to replace answering machine cassette tape
It's a simple message and I'm leaving out the whistles and bells
Swiss wildlife park serves up furry residents to visitors
'It's ecological' says spokesman, now how would you like your Bambi done?
The iPAD launch BEFORE it happened: SPECULATIVE GUFF ahead of actual event
Nerve-shattering run-up to the pre-planned known event
Space exploration is just so lame. NEW APPS are mankind's future
We feel obliged to point out the headline statement is total, utter cobblers
STONER SHEEP get the MUNCHIES after feasting on £4k worth of cannabis plants
Baaaaaa! Fanny's Farm's woolly flock is high, maaaaaan
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.