Robots Are Roaming The San Fransisco Streets To Fight Crime
According to a recent report by The San Francisco Business Times, crime-fighting robots known as K9s are patrolling it’s sidewalks to fight the always-growing number of homeless people from setting up tent encampments. The San Francisco SPAC (Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) started using these machines near its Mission campus in early November, and they’re using it as a way to prevent sidewalk camps and other relatedissues, such as discarded needles and car break-ins.
The S.F. SPAC president claims that since they’ve enlisted the help of these automated creatures, the city has seen a huge decrease in crime–but that doesn’t mean the people in San Fransisco are happy about it. The organization’s president claims the benefits of these robots heavily outweigh any potential inconvenience, like getting in the way of any foot traffic or, ya know, filling the streets with these random robots.
The K9 was created by a California-based startup called Knightscope, which rents out the robots for approximately $6 an hour. You might be surprised to learn that even though the idea sounds foreign, many companies including Uber and Microsoft have used these machines to monitor their parking lots and offices in the hopes of preventing crime.
While SPAC claims that these strange robots are improving the safety of the area, most of the people have in the bay have criticized the move as another way to unfairly criminalize homelessness during a time of rising rents and gentrification.