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So, what caliber for robot?

In fascinating and terrifying news, the Dallas police took a bomb disposal robot, attached an explosive to it, rolled it up on the subject and introduced his insides to the outside.

On the one hand, likely a move that saved a shoot out and potential additional loss of life. On the other, if he was secured, they could maybe have waited him out.

On the third hand, the police just killed some guy with a fucking robot. And that’s kinda frightening. Even more so if this becomes a regularly used tactic.

42 Responses to “So, what caliber for robot?”

  1. Chas Says:

    There must be a lot more to the story. In fact, there is probably robot-video not to be seen by civilians.

    But if you were a well-armed ex-military guy as the shooter supposedly was, and you saw a robot coming, wouldn’t you try to shoot out its camera or something?

    Unless he was somehow distracted . . .

  2. Joe Huffman Says:

    This was, almost for certain, their explosives disposal robot. The robot would normally use the explosive charge to tear a bomb apart.

    In the last year or so I saw a video of, I think, an Israel robot with a handgun inside it. It looked pretty innocent until it started emptying the magazine into it’s target.

    It’s going to be more common. Just wait until the little drones start dropping a half pound of HE down your butt cheeks as you are hunkered down behind a car or road divider.

  3. bobby Says:

    Don’t be an asshole and execute a bunch of cops then.

    I cry not for assholes nuked by Number Five or Wall-E

  4. JK Brown Says:

    One expects the plan was for the explosion to stun the killer, but he was a little to close to the robot or they used a little to much C4.

    As for waiting him out, expectation was there were more killers on the loose, some were already rioting and committing arson and the rest of the city was without police services. They waited several hours and the you try to stun him.

  5. mikee Says:

    I recall the mayor of Philadelphia using a police helicopter to drop two actual air to ground bombs on the row house held by African-American protesters in the MOVE group. And that was in 1985.

    The more things change, the more they stay the same, as far as I can see.

  6. Fred Says:

    Interesting times indeed. Most of us have heard the expression, “no more free wacos”. It would seem the BLM has declared their tribe and the line not to cross. That the Second Civil War (if that’s what this is) would start like this really is no surprise. Who has the least to lose to the police state. I’m not judging or taking sides, study the facts, dump the emotions, prepare!
    Note to BLM, mind your target selection. If you start shooting random white people this will turn on you fast. Look at history, we don’t shoot each other, we organize into huge armies and burn whole fucking continents down. Again not taking sides. This is no surprise, a well armed people and a police state don’t coexist. Caution.

  7. chiefjaybob Says:

    bobby, I don’t think you’re thinking big enough. What happens when somebody besides a judge and jury “decides” you executed a bunch of cops? If it’s good for this call, what about for the Branch Davidians? Or Randy Weaver? Trust me, I’m pretty conflicted on this, but the idea of this kind of escalation is pretty sobering.

  8. wizardpc Says:

    Well at least they didn’t burn him alive, I guess.

    What I read somewhere (48 hour rule applies*) is that he asked for a cell phone, so he was expecting the robot to deliver it.

    *almost everything reported in the first 48 hours is bullshit

  9. Windy Wilson Says:

    Wizardpc, But BS implies some usefulness. I heard a similar opinion of news from a former journalist that did not succumb to the siren call of Leftism while becoming a film maker.

  10. Daniel in Brookline Says:

    Everyone keeps calling it a “robot”. (The Israelis make the same mistake with their remotely-operated bomb-disposal units.)

    This isn’t the Terminator, folks! It’s not even Wall-E. The police might as well have sent a quad-copter to talk to him.

  11. Deaf Smith Says:

    I think they used a bomb detection/disposal robot and put a Claymore mine on it.

  12. Erik Says:

    So they judge dread him? No jury of peers to convict. You break the law you die. This can snowball;

  13. Mike Says:

    I wonder if they considered tear gas, or a flashbang.

  14. Mark Matis Says:

    Piggies had better tell their kids to not go anywhere near toys that don’t belong to them. Sure would be a shame if Jimmy Pig Junior picked up a remote control vehicle and it blew his arms off.

    They have set, and now modified, the Rules of Engagement. Time for them and their families to enjoy the fruits of their labors under those very rules.

  15. Marc Says:

    “Some guy”? Really? How about a murderous son-of-a-bitch that just shot 12 cops, killing 5 — and was continuing his actions by trying to kill more. “Frightening”?… you mean a(non-autonomous) remote-controlled device taking out this POS rather than going all San Juan hill on his ass? Oh wait… I get it now… that’s SO much more frightening than centering his melon in the crosshairs of a scoped sniper rifle and punching his ticket. And yeah, I’ve got 28 years LE. You use what you’ve got & hope your boss has the balls to back you. Too bad they didn’t have a freakin’ missle. I’m done…

  16. Mark Matis Says:

    Works both ways, Marc. Hope your family is ready to enjoy the fruits of your labors under the very rules you have used. Enjoy!

  17. Marc Says:

    Mark Matis: Indeed they are – ready… (lol). You & yours have a grand life, & hopefully you’ll never require the services of one of those “piggies”.

  18. Mark Matis Says:

    I won’t need your piggies, Marc, if they will stay out of the way. Since there is no longer Rule of Law, Binky, well, it works BOTH ways.

  19. Marc Says:

    Mr. Matis, you have won me over — you are indeed my hero. Bless your heart…

  20. Nylarthotep Says:

    Welcome to SWAT2.0

    I don’t see much here that is beyond what could happen if a SWAT sniper had been able to have a clear shot at him. New coverage (for what it is worth) said he’d stated there were bombs planted around the building and in the car and that he was going to kill more people (sorry if that is poor paraphrasing). How long do you wait if you think there are bombs near by that he could use to kill others and maybe your officers on site.

    As for the bomb “robot” I wonder why the police should be taking greater risks when they could use such a device. We don’t ask that of our soldiers, so why should LEO have to be put at extra risk?

    All the arguments against the use of the police robot sound very similar to what was said about SWAT teams when they first started. Unfortunately, a lot of those concerns, especially about the misuse of those tactics have come to be true.

  21. Lyle Says:

    To answer the question; it would depend on the robot. I think everyone should have access to a 50 BMG, but a smallish, somewhat hardened ‘bot might fall easily to a 300 magnum of some kind. WW II era armor piercing rounds are still available in 30 caliber. Without specific hardening against rifle fire, the hunting rifle on your rack there, with your hunting ammunition, would take care of small machinery just fine. I was able to totally destroy a small engine with one or two shots from an SKS for example. Against armor plate you’ll want that 30 magnum with AP, at least.

  22. Mark Matis Says:

    Glad to have finally turned you into a “good cop”, Marc! Now are you going to clean out your pig sty?
    Or are you going to find an honest job?

  23. JTC Says:

    @Mark Matis, Are you a BLM shill, or just a regular fucking idiot? And if you are just a RFI, I’m sure BLM would hire you on. Then you can march and carry signs and hope the fuck the piggies there are watching out FOR you rather than watching out for YOU.

    I’m no LE apologist on a systemic level, I’ve seen and am aware of a hell of a lot of wrong there and the trend is getting worse not better. But let me stand up for LEO’s because out of the hundreds I have done business and had relationships with, for every dick who puts on the uni so he can be a dick in a uni, there are fifty good decent peace officers doing a good necessary job, who have a family, who love America and God and Guns…they are US with a badge.

  24. Gerry Says:

    mikee Says…
    Mikee, the PA State Police dropped a satchel charge to destroy a bunker on the roof of a house occupied by MOVE members at the direction of the Philly Police from a helicopter. The command structure then decided to let a fire burn hoping to get the MOVE members to surrender. They didn’t and a whole city block burned to the ground.

  25. Chas Says:

    Caliber? To paraphrase that old saying, if you see a robot coming to kill you, you didn’t plan your mission properly.
    However, I think that his exit strategy consisted of suicide by cop.
    Why? Obama:
    1. Eight years of treating veterans like crap.
    2. Eight years of blaming white people and cops for black people’s problems.

  26. Chas Says:

    3. Eight years of a Marxist president shitting on our capitalist economy, with black Americans hardest hit, and a president who didn’t give a shit.
    When a young, black American veteran with all the world before him chooses to commit suicide and take others with him after eight years of a black president, you had damn well better ask why, because something is radically wrong with that situation. We have an America-hating communist in the White House, and if that doesn’t change, we will all continue to suffer the consequences.

  27. wizardpc Says:

    When all attempts to negotiate with the suspect, Micah Johnson, failed under the exchange of gunfire, the Department utilized the mechanical tactical robot, as a last resort, to deliver an explosion device to save the lives of officers and citizens.

    The robot used was the Remotec, Model F-5, claw and arm extension with an explosive device of C4 plus “Det” cord.

    Approximate weight of total charge was one pound.

    I’m not an expert, but I’m pretty sure a pound of C4 is A LOT.

  28. Fred Says:

    It’s not a robot. It was a remote controlled machine. A robot would be programmed to autonomously go kill (the guy).

    Self driving cars, for example, are robots and I hate to say it but the iRobot Roomba is a simple robot.

    The Israeli “robot” is also a machine.

  29. Standard Mischief Says:

    >I wonder if they considered tear gas, or a flashbang.

    Tear gas is for “compounds”

    Flash-bangs are for cribs.

  30. dittybopper Says:

    Anti-personnel bombs are military equipment, pure and simple, and have no place in police work because they are indiscriminate. Just like you can’t carry a hand grenade around for self-defense, the police can’t use a bomb (improvised or not) in an intentionally lethal manner. It has never *EVER* been done before in the history of the US that I’m aware of (the MOVE bombing was an attempt to gain access, not specifically to kill people), and quite honestly it’s not a precedent you want to set.

    Honestly, it saddens me immensely that there are people who think it was OK to kill a suspect with a bomb. The militarization of the police is nearly complete.

    God help us all.

  31. Jody Says:

    Seriously, plasma rifle. Preferably in the 40 watt range.

  32. Lyle Says:

    “…there are people who think it was OK to kill a suspect with a bomb.”

    “Suspect” being the key word here. If you’re against killing “suspects” with bombs, then surely you’d be against concealed carry. Carrying a gun is specifically for the purpose of shooting “suspects”.
    That is, if your definition of “suspect” is an active shooter in the process of murdering people or attempting to murder people at that very moment.

    In this case the ‘bot bomb was no more indiscriminate than a sniper’s bullet. It was sent directly to the “suspect” and it took him out.

    Very important here. If you’re “suspected” of a crime you have the benefit of the doubt. Innocent until proven guilty and all. If you’re actively murdering people and shooting trying to murder more, you’re not a “suspect”. You’re a legitimate target. Words mean things.

    Misusing the language as you are, you’re either deliberately attempting to muddy the waters here (a perpetrator) or you’re the unfortunate victim of those who’ve muddied the waters before you (a dupe). Best you straighten up in any case.

  33. Gerry Says:

    Law enforcement has burn up and dynamited suspects through out our history if they refused to give up. Ned Christie comes to mind as one of the more famous criminals who met his death that way.

  34. JK Brown Says:

    He said he had IEDs all over the place and probably claimed to have had IEDs defending the approaches to his position. The police followed bomb protocol of attempting to blow up the IEDs. Either the concussion drove the “suspect” into something else or he did have other IEDs near him that went off.

    The lesson here is don’t tell the cops you have explosives defending approaches to your position.

  35. DaveP. Says:

    “The difference between an assassin droid and a Roomba is a working laser cannon.”
    –Vexxarr, from

  36. Fred Says:

    I consider the Roomba to be far more dangerous. It’s the subtle, innocent looking ones that are always the problem. They just sit in a corner, quiet, waiting for the command to strike.

  37. Publius Says:

    @ Marc and @ Mark Matis: Like Chris Rock, I’m not saying he should have done it…but I understand. I think that the theme song for 2016 should definitely be this song from Les Mis.

  38. Jim W Says:

    He was inside an armored van shooting out from inside. The robot was able to get close to him because he was probably viewing his surroundings through a slit.

    I’m ok with this type of problem solving. If someone has to take one for the team, it’s better that it be the robot.

  39. Matthew Carberry Says:

    If the “robot” has a 2-way video and sound then it has the ability to demand and accept a surrender with zero risk to officers. A sniper shot has neither. And they were in commo with him via phone, he had refused surrender, going in after him meant casualties and about 0% chance of taking him alive anyway.

    Hell, they pinned him down and wounded him by shooting through the walls.

    I have no moral or legal problem with this. Once lethal force is justified/authorized the means are almost irrelevant. Though a pound of C4 is a pretty decent charge vis a vis property damage.

  40. Chas Says:

    “I’m not an expert, but I’m pretty sure a pound of C4 is A LOT.”

    A pound of black powder is a lot. A pound of C4 is a lot, lot more than that. You wouldn’t even feel it. Just a brief, percussive thump and you’re gone. A very easy way to go.

  41. Chas Says:

    “…have no place in police work because they are indiscriminate.”

    Total BS. They walked it in, on him specifically, and on no one else. No court would say that was “indiscriminate”. You need to settle down and get right.

  42. Chas Says:

    BTW: Historically, judges don’t much care about how the police made someone dead, they’ve just cared about the legal niceties about why they made somebody dead.
    So, if you’re involved in a shootout with the police, and they decide that the best way to deal with you is to launch a burning log up your ass such that you explode into a thousand bits of flaming bad guy, your next-of-kin might not be successful in their excessive force lawsuit, since you were shooting at the police.