The Food Delivery Robot That Strolled Through A Crime Scene

It's true, we love our technology. It makes life just that little bit easier and keeps us in contact with one another. News sources are at our fingertips. Insider reported that Elon Musk thinks driverless cars are the way forward. Policy Genius conducted a survey to see just how Americans felt about this new type of vehicle and over 70% of respondents said they wouldn't feel safe being in a car or knowing cars were on the road with no human driver. 

The food delivery robot is a much smaller vehicle. It's about the size of an average cooler and it tends to use footpaths rather than making a nuisance of itself in traffic. Launched in 2018, it was first invented by the company Starship Technologies and is owned by the same people responsible for Skype. While the efficient little delivery vehicles are a prominent sight in the streets of Los Angeles, they've also been in the news for getting into nasty predicaments — such as a run in with a freight train — that a human driver may have avoided. The other thing it doesn't know how to do is work out when or where it really shouldn't be entering a particular area, like this crime scene (via TODAY).

How was the robot supposed to know?

An active shooter was reported at Hollywood High School on September 13th, luckily, it turned out to be a hoax but not before it was declared a crime scene with dozens of police on site. The robot was filmed by several onlookers and can be seen cautiously crossing the street and then making its way directly by the crime scene as police looked on and stepped out of its way (via TODAY).

From the footage, it's difficult to tell where the food delivery vehicle was headed or which restaurant had sent it. However, as Gizmodo reported, it turned out that it wasn't entirely the robot's fault; this particular robot, owned by Serve Robotics, was being controlled by a human who thought the robot was given clearance to move through the crime scene. In a video posted by Twitter user @FilmthePoliceLA, a journalist can be seen lifting the crime scene tape for the little robot to enter the intersection.