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AOC Calls Out NYPD's Use of 'Robotic Dog' Drones to Police Her District and People Are Applauding

AOC Calls Out NYPD's Use of 'Robotic Dog' Drones to Police Her District and People Are Applauding
FNTV - FreedomNewsTV/YouTube // Scott Heins/Getty Images

With billions of dollars in its coffers, the New York City police department enjoys one of the highest police budgets of any city in the United States.

Even after landmark uprisings against racist policing systems last year pressured drastic cuts to the police budget, the NYPD still receives the third highest funding of any agency in the city.

New Yorkers got a glimpse this week into how that money is being used when a video surfaced of Digidog, a 70 pound surveillance robot designed to send live footage to human officers in high-pressure situations.

The bot was tested in the Bronx earlier this week, investigating a home invasion.

NYPD Robo-Dog "Digidog" Deployed in

While its defenders say the bot will help protect the city's police in dangerous situations, New Yorkers are largely condemning the bot as a dangerous trend toward further militarization of police in the Big Apple—former home of the racist stop-and-frisk policy that overwhelmingly targeted innocent people of color.

Among those criticizing the technology was Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), a strong proponent of reallocating greater portions of police resources into public goods like education and healthcare.

Ocasio-Cortez reiterated that support in her response to the Digidog test.

The Congresswoman called on her followers to ask themselves when they last saw subsidized state-of-the-art technology go towards resources for residents in underserved communities, instead of overwhelmingly toward the police who disproportionately surveil them.

Her opposition was met with widespread agreement.

Some said the robot reminded them of something out of the dystopian television series Black Mirror.

Despite the $75 thousand robot dog cop, the culprits involved in the home invasion were gone before authorities arrived, having stolen $2 thousand and a cell phone. The men held two people hostage before one of the hostages managed to escape and alert police. The second hostage, a 35 year old man, was gone as well.

While the bot is still in its testing phase, it's unclear how broad its usage would be if fully adopted by the NYPD.