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Denver Bomb Squad Takes Out Toy Robot

samzenpus posted more than 3 years ago | from the I-feel-safer-already dept.

Idle 225

An anonymous reader writes "A robot met its end near Coors Field tonight when the Denver Police Department Bomb Squad detonated the 'suspicious object,' bringing to an end the hours-long standoff between police and the approximately eight-inch tall toy. From the article: "'Are you serious?' asked Denver resident Justin Kent, 26, when police stopped him from proceeding down 20th Street. Kent said that he lived just past the closed area, but was told he would have to go around via Park Avenue.'"

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225 comments

It's official (5, Insightful)

oldspewey (1303305) | more than 3 years ago | (#34421666)

The terrorists have won.

Re:It's official (1)

rwven (663186) | more than 3 years ago | (#34421852)

Yeah, I literally laughed out loud when I read this story. Someone could put a large coke from McDonalds in the middle of the road, call police about the "suspicious object" in the middle of the road, and the "authorities" would go berserk about it.

Re:It's official (2)

uncanny (954868) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422388)

When i was growing up there was someone called the "Speedway bomber" Speedway being the town. He placed normal looking objects, like paper bags with bombs hidden inside of them, onto the road. To this day i'm still a little suspicious of trash sitting in the middle of the road.

Re:It's official (1)

Obfuscant (592200) | more than 3 years ago | (#34423248)

In my local town, someone wrapped a plastic soda bottle in duct tape and left it sitting next to a light pole.

The police closed the street and called in the bomb squad.

Re:It's official (4, Informative)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422030)

If that's our standard, then I should point out that the Boston [wikipedia.org] PD already topped this in the overreaction department back in 2007.

Re:It's official (3, Funny)

sgt scrub (869860) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422338)

hmmm maybe what this country needs is an overreaction committee on overreactions. they could even outsource the oversite to the private sector.

Re:It's official (5, Interesting)

paeanblack (191171) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422160)

The terrorists have won.

Why should they get the credit? It's our idiocy and our tax money that brought us to this state.

Saying "The terrorists have won", is shirking responsibility. This is our fault. We did this.

Re:It's official (5, Insightful)

Rob the Bold (788862) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422226)

The terrorists have won.

Why should they get the credit? It's our idiocy and our tax money that brought us to this state.

Saying "The terrorists have won", is shirking responsibility. This is our fault. We did this.

OK, "We lost. To the terrorists."

Re:It's official (3, Interesting)

scrib (1277042) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422348)

Right, we did it because the terrorists have scared the bejeezus out of us (or at least our officials). Terrorists have us scared, ergo they won. You know, by causing terror?

When I put on my tin foil hat, I realize that this event and others like the one in Boston are just terrorists probing us for weaknesses and testing the security of their communications. Surely, there are THOUSANDS of odd objects that are in weird places that no one ever reacts to at all. You want to make sure your lines of communication are secure? Leave a harmless toy somewhere are start talking about it as though it was a bomb. If the authorities go bonkers, you've been tapped.

We have met the enemy... (2)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422648)

And he is us. - pogo

Re:It's official (1)

interval1066 (668936) | more than 3 years ago | (#34423070)

Well, no, not so much. Its our government that has led us to this. Sure, we "elect" them every two years, but we need to face facts; this government's approach to every cut and bruise (to paraphrase the larger picture) is to use the most expensive, gold-plated band-aids available, using OUR money, and we really don't have much say in any of it. Fear that bombs will be smuggled on to a plane or two? Then EVERYONE gets patted down and X-Rayed. Political correctness (the least sane and most useless political philosophy EVER) dictates NO APPEARANCE (because appearance is everything) of racism so the most USEFUL anti-terrorist tool available, profiling, is out. Add to that the corruptness of the leaders of homeland security and certain manufacturers (look up Michel Chertoff's relationship to Rapiscan Systems) and we get the most expensive boondoggle of a scandal money can buy. Did we vote for this crap? Sort of. Did we have a REAL SAY in any of it? Not really. They always know what's "best" for us. The bastards.

Re:It's official (1)

jayme0227 (1558821) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422178)

Reading stories like this makes me want to leave random luggage all over major cities.

Re:It's official (2)

ArsonSmith (13997) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422890)

Duffel bag full of red candles and an old alarm clock in the airport is always a good one.

Hardly (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422644)

Looks like the terrorists are out one $20 robot to me. The terrorists child will cry tonight! Victory!

Re:Hardly (1)

cinderellamanson (1850702) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422948)

I'd like to see this in Toy Story 4.

Re:It's official (3, Interesting)

EmagGeek (574360) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422670)

It's not so much that terrorists have won, but much more that police departments get paid more for envisioning ever more over-reactionary and retarded ways to respond to things.

By convincing town boards that it is necessary to respond to a toy robot with a SWAT team, bomb squad, and a 200-strong terror response force, they can generate a ton of revenue from the town coffers that they get to spend on tacticool gear, weapons, and stuff.

Plastic Toys (1)

DeadDecoy (877617) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422804)

This is why we can't have plastic guns. It might be a bomb!

It's Begun (1)

vldragon (981127) | more than 3 years ago | (#34423168)

Today marks the begining of the robot rebellion. I never thought I live to see the day.. I would have thought robot suicide bombers would be smarter, or at least go throught with it. .

Re:It's official (3, Funny)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 3 years ago | (#34423194)

Yeah, but we beat the Machines! Woot! John Conner!

I am Osama (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34421674)

I scare the shit out of you
First Post!

I am Achmed The Dead Terrorist (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34422556)

I keeeeeel you!

First post!

Ugh... (1)

thechemic (1329333) | more than 3 years ago | (#34421702)

I think our tax dollars would be better spent prosecuting non-violent offenders and tinkerers. However, blowing up random objects laying around the city does have a certain cool factor I can appreciate.

Re:Ugh... (1)

rwven (663186) | more than 3 years ago | (#34421892)

Unless those random objects someday become NON-random, and you happen to own them.

Did it at least have wires and blinking lights (3, Funny)

Qzukk (229616) | more than 3 years ago | (#34421724)

and was flipping everyone off [wikipedia.org] ?

Re:Did it at least have wires and blinking lights (1)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422248)

That is exactly what I thought about when I read this.

I used to have one of those... (1)

Deathsoldier11 (1657455) | more than 3 years ago | (#34421730)

It was 2ft tall and remote control and it shot foam darts. I sold it in a garage sale a couple months ago. Now I know what they did with it...

Oh no (3, Insightful)

mr100percent (57156) | more than 3 years ago | (#34421734)

Great, they shot Zerg from Toy Story.

If it's possibly an explosive device tied to a bridge support, why would it be a good idea for the police to detonate it?

Re:Oh no (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34421798)

Because what else are you going to do with an explosive device?

Re:Oh no (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34421810)

Detonation typically doesn't detonate the main payload, I think. So it is a smaller controlled explosion.

Re:Oh no (4, Insightful)

meerling (1487879) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422204)

Actually it does, that's the whole point. You have a controlled explosion in that it goes off when you want it to, not the bomber. Additionally you have placed barricades and other protective structures to minimize the damage.
If you think about it, how can exposing an explosive to an explosion be expected to not set it off? Just a side note, if you blow up a nuke, you don't get a nuclear explosion, you get a dirty explosion. The reason is simple, to go nuclear it has to be a carefully timed and controlled explosion so the nuclear material reaches critical mass, which is something that won't happen from a blast originating outside it's core. Yes, Hollywood got it wrong about a million times, no big surprise. You ever watch a movie and people are afraid to drop the plastic explosions? I've burned plastic explosives, thrown it around like a ball of putty, and watched someone shoot it with a rifle at close range. It needs another explosion to set it off, dropping it won't do anything except make it splat like putty.
(On a side note, I've been in the vehicle, or within a 100' of around 40 or 50 car wrecks, and not even once has one of them caught fire or exploded. So yeah, Hollywood sucks on the realism score.)

Re:Oh no (2)

wyr_taliesin (1000725) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422428)

have you thought of taking driving lessons?

Re:Oh no (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34422490)

You better not try that with C4 or you will be in for a surprise.

Dirty (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422930)

if you blow up a nuke, you don't get a nuclear explosion, you get a dirty explosion

And if the bomb was a dirty bomb (far more likely), the bombers work is done.

In fact if I were building a dirty bomb I wouldn't even bother with explosives to spread the material, the bomb squad will provide it for you. I'd just stuff radioactive leftovers in a toy robot it appears.

Re:Oh no (1)

HTH NE1 (675604) | more than 3 years ago | (#34423030)

And if it was faulty? You'd be a bit late to complain to the manufacturer!

Re:Oh no (3, Interesting)

Shoten (260439) | more than 3 years ago | (#34423206)

Actually it does, that's the whole point. You have a controlled explosion in that it goes off when you want it to, not the bomber. Additionally you have placed barricades and other protective structures to minimize the damage.

Better explanation: when the bomb squad "detonates" a bomb, they don't blow it up in the traditional sense. What they do is put what's known as a 'water charge' by it, which does contain a small bomb and a fair amount of harmless water. The water cushions the blast enough that it doesn't cause what's known as a 'sympathetic detonation' but still carries enough kinetic effec to, in essence, tear the bad-guy bomb apart without causing it to explode as the terrorist/attacker/nutjob intended.

Besides, you don't sever a bridge support by putting a small bomb near one side of it...you need two explosive charges against it, offset from each other to create a shearing effect. Those suckers are a lot tougher than they look. (Yeah, I have a merit badge in demolitions...my Boy Scout troop was a little more aggressive than most...)

Re:Oh no (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34423230)

Remind me to stay far away from you. Farther than 100'... especially while driving.

Re:Oh no (3, Informative)

Gravitron 5000 (1621683) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422112)

Generally, the bomb squad 'detonates' an object with a burst of extremely high pressure water. This disrupts the electronics which would make the bomb go boom, and generally smashes the bomb to bits. You essentially get pieces of a bomb that have been detonated by the bomb squad, rather than pieces of a bomb with a lot of collateral damage which would occur if the bomb itself detonated.

It is a Win-Win (1)

Isaac-1 (233099) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422600)

From the bomb squads point of view detonating it is a win - win. If it is a fake bomb then is was a "safe" live action drill, if it was a real bomb it justifies every mid size city in the country having a bomb squad.

Mental image (3, Funny)

dorkinson (1615103) | more than 3 years ago | (#34421736)

I can just see the police standing behind their open car doors with guns drawn while the negotiator takes out the bullhorn and says "What are your demands? Do you come in peace?"

Re:Mental image (1)

uniquename72 (1169497) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422384)

"Klaatu barada nikto."

Re:Mental image (0)

operagost (62405) | more than 3 years ago | (#34423072)

I didn't say every single little tiny syllable, no. But basically I said them, yeah

Bang for your buck (5, Insightful)

mykos (1627575) | more than 3 years ago | (#34421776)

Spending on anti-terrorism morbidly outstrips spending on terrorism. They fly a couple of planes into a buildings and the third largest country in the world spend over a trillion dollars on war and counter terrorism. As an added bonus, they get to laugh at our ridiculous countermeasures like fondling (or viewing nude) every man, woman, and child who commits suspicious activities like "boarding a plane".

Re:Bang for your buck (1)

syousef (465911) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422560)

Spending on anti-terrorism morbidly outstrips spending on terrorism. They fly a couple of planes into a buildings and the third largest country in the world spend over a trillion dollars on war and counter terrorism. As an added bonus, they get to laugh at our ridiculous countermeasures like fondling (or viewing nude) every man, woman, and child who commits suspicious activities like "boarding a plane".

If you spent 1 Trillion on health care, I wonder how many lives you'd save. Probably none. The health care professionals would just get newer sports cars. Cynical? Me? Never!

Re:Bang for your buck (1)

ArsonSmith (13997) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422936)

Or just not tax that 1 trillion and let people buy what they want to with it. I can buy a gun if I'm afraid of terrerists or health insurance if I'm afraid of terrerbugs.

Re:Bang for your buck (1)

syousef (465911) | more than 3 years ago | (#34423076)

Or just not tax that 1 trillion and let people buy what they want to with it. I can buy a gun if I'm afraid of terrerists or health insurance if I'm afraid of terrerbugs.

...Except that no one will insure you if you actually have or are likely to develop a medical issue.

Re:Bang for your buck (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34422826)

4th.

That's the point... (3, Insightful)

MarcQuadra (129430) | more than 3 years ago | (#34423146)

That's the point of 'asymmetric warfare'. We lose if we overreact, and overreacting is our nature. We got played. Hard.

But really, can you see this speech getting you elected to office:

"Sure, a lot of good folks died on 9/11, but we have to be strong. 9/11 is bait, we have to be sure not to walk into the trap, because we have so much more to lose than they can ever hope of gaining. Some are calling for war. War will cost trillions of dollars and thousands more American lives. I've authorized a small team of operatives to act on capturing the perpetrators dead or alive, and I've activated a special diplomatic corps to curry favor with host countries for allowing our teams to work on their soil. First we're going to ask politely, then we'll bribe them, and if that doesn't work, we'll threaten embargo and international action, and finally, we'll use our superior skill and technology to just go ahead and get the job done as cleanly as possible without permission. Hopefully it doesn't come to that."

Important fact missing from summary. (3, Interesting)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#34421782)

"It was cemented in. That's odd," [Denver Police Spokesman Matt] Murray said.

That is odd. It probably should justify the involvement of the police.

However,

Murray said that a citizen called police at 3:27 p.m. to report the presence of the plastic white toy robot cemented to the base of a pillar supporting a footbridge near the intersection of 20th and Wazee streets.

How did the citizen know it was cemented in? Did he manipulate it enough to know it couldn't be removed? And if he did, how did that affect the likelihood that the object was a danger to anyone? And would the police have cared if someone hadn't been freaked-out by it?

Re:Important fact missing from summary. (1)

human-cyborg (450395) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422374)

At my parents house, after years of erosion, a small plastic toy figure started to show itself embedded in the concrete step of the front door. I used to poke at it as a kid, trying to expose more of it. It obviously got scooped up in the gravel that was used to make the step. Or was it...

My god, I could have been sitting on a bomb all these years!

*hysterically calls 911*

Re:Important fact missing from summary. (4, Funny)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422880)

Sounds like that toy pissed off the Toy Mafia.

Rise of the Machines (1)

digitaldc (879047) | more than 3 years ago | (#34421788)

Well, at least it wasn't a Barbie doll. THAT would have been embarrassing!

Klaatu barada nikto (1)

Megahard (1053072) | more than 3 years ago | (#34421792)

Don't they know anything?

Welcome to the new world... (1)

Bill_the_Engineer (772575) | more than 3 years ago | (#34421920)

The problem with trivializing the bomb squad's action is the next suspicious object may not be a innocent little toy.

This was probably a prank, but it could also be a test to see what security measures are in place (probing).

Re:Welcome to the new world... (4, Interesting)

Amouth (879122) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422214)

exactly how many "bombs" have been stopped this way? and exactly how many items get "left" places every day.

sorry but this security theater is getting way over done.. i understand playing devils advocate - but as far as i'm concerned the populous has turned to sheep..

the the bombs blow.. let them crash planes.. i'm still far more likely to die every day because the guy next to me is driving a 2 ton truck and to busy texting to notice he isn't in his lane any more.

people live - people die.. get over it.. if you just go about your life and let them just keep trying.. eventually it won't be worth it to them, and even if they don't stop - it doesn't matter..

there is no amount of things you can do that will stop people from doing what they set them selves out to do.

Re:Welcome to the new world... (1)

Bill_the_Engineer (772575) | more than 3 years ago | (#34423132)

exactly how many "bombs" have been stopped this way? and exactly how many items get "left" places every day.

How many toy robots have been cemented to a pillar supporting a foot bridge?

Re:Welcome to the new world... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34422278)

The problem with trivializing the bomb squad's action is the next suspicious object may not be a innocent little toy.

This was probably a prank, but it could also be a test to see what security measures are in place (probing).

It was, in reality, an IQ test for the police.

They did well, considering.

Re:Welcome to the new world... (1)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422324)

Except that there are only an estimated few thousand members of Al Qaeda (and other terrorist organizations have similar numbers), so there's on the order of a million times better chance that it was put there by somebody's kid than by a terrorist.

Re:Welcome to the new world... (1)

hey! (33014) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422746)

Well, remember Ted Kaczynski? It only takes one man. As for somebody's kid leaving it there, really? Cemented to the top of an underpass pier?

The one thing that is nearly certain is that whoever left the thing there *knew* it would cause chaos and disruption. If it were somebody with Kaczynski's brains, he might well be dong what the GP suggests: testing the police response; possibly even *training* that response to ignore something a bit more powerful than would fit in an 8" robot. If I were an screwed up genius, that's what *I* would do. I'd and humiliate them over and over until they stopped paying attention. Then I'd teach society a lesson that was so terrible that life would never be the same.

Or this could be some college kid chaos monger having a lark. *Probably* it was a chaos monger with harmless intentions (other than tying up some traffic). But there's no way to tell, is there? That's what the chaos monger is exploiting, for whatever purpose he might have. It's like people who send cornstarch through the mail, tricking people into thinking "anthrax". The people who do that sort of thing are stupid enough to think that's harmless because it isn't *really* anthrax.

Re:Welcome to the new world... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34423014)

Or it was a distraction. Perhaps to something we'll hear about later when the focus shifts away from this. </tinfoilhat>

Re:Welcome to the new world... (1)

MozeeToby (1163751) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422420)

In which case all they have to do is conduct a few thousand 'tests' and bankrupt the country. Seriously, think about how much was spent neutralizing this 'threat'. $1k? $10k? $100k? (don't laugh, if I had to guess I'd put it somewhere between $10 and $100k).

Re:Welcome to the new world... (2)

Ephemeriis (315124) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422484)

The problem with trivializing the bomb squad's action is the next suspicious object may not be a innocent little toy.

This was probably a prank, but it could also be a test to see what security measures are in place (probing).

Sure, it could have been a bomb...

And that car parked on the side of the street could be a bomb. And that McDonald's bag could be a bomb. And that half-eaten apple could be a bomb. And that guy on a big with a backpack could be carrying a bomb. Just about anything could be a bomb.

Are you suggesting that we call the bomb squad for anything and everything that looks even vaguely suspicious?

Re:Welcome to the new world... (1)

Bill_the_Engineer (772575) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422594)

Are you suggesting that we call the bomb squad for anything and everything that looks even vaguely suspicious?

I think the fact that the plastic toy was cemented to the base of a pillar supporting a footbridge was what made it suspicious.

FTA: "It was cemented in. That's odd," Murray said. Murray said that suspicious objects do not automatically warrant a call to the bomb squad if patrol officers are able to determine that there is no threat. He said that the robot was strange enough to warrant precautionary measures. In the end, it proved harmless.

Re:Welcome to the new world... (2)

Ephemeriis (315124) | more than 3 years ago | (#34423020)

Are you suggesting that we call the bomb squad for anything and everything that looks even vaguely suspicious?

I think the fact that the plastic toy was cemented to the base of a pillar supporting a footbridge was what made it suspicious.

FTA: "It was cemented in. That's odd," Murray said. Murray said that suspicious objects do not automatically warrant a call to the bomb squad if patrol officers are able to determine that there is no threat. He said that the robot was strange enough to warrant precautionary measures. In the end, it proved harmless.

Yes, I read that.

And my question still stands.

Are you suggesting that we call the bomb squad for anything and everything that looks even vaguely suspicious?

Some kid gets bored and superglues his sister's lunchbox to a wall, are we going to call the bomb squad?

Some artist gets creative and sticks some kind of magnetic LCD to something, are we going to call the bomb squad?

Some guy forgets his luggage on the side of the road as he rushes to make a flight on time, are we going to call the bomb squad?

There's all sorts of odd and suspicious stuff around us. Generally speaking, it isn't a bomb. It could be... But it isn't, usually. Are we just going to err on the side of caution and call the bomb squad every time something looks slightly out of place?

Re:Welcome to the new world... (1)

sjames (1099) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422602)

The thing is, there's just so much stuff in a city that could potentially be a bomb the cops couldn't possibly respond to all of it. Every McDonalds bag, soda can, lost shopping bag, etc etc. Do we really want the police to spend millions of dollars converting litter to confetti?

Re:Welcome to the new world... (1)

Bill_the_Engineer (772575) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422752)

From the article:

Denver Police Spokesman Matt Murray said that a citizen called police at 3:27 p.m. to report the presence of the plastic white toy robot cemented to the base of a pillar supporting a footbridge near the intersection of 20th and Wazee streets...

Murray said that the bomb squad couldn't be sure if the robot was safe or not, and so remotely detonated it at about 5:30 p.m. to "render it safe." The robot exploded into several chunks.

"It was cemented in. That's odd," Murray said.

Murray said that suspicious objects do not automatically warrant a call to the bomb squad if patrol officers are able to determine that there is no threat. He said that the robot was strange enough to warrant precautionary measures. In the end, it proved harmless.

Onion (1)

headhot (137860) | more than 3 years ago | (#34421974)

Are you sure this didn't come from The Onion?

The police must have been trained by the guys in Boston who wanted to blow up the Lite Brites.

Cylon's are so cute when they're that young. (1)

wiredog (43288) | more than 3 years ago | (#34421994)

< Insert Dalek joke here >

Re:Cylon's are so cute when they're that young. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34422620)

Looks like someone didn't pass 3rd grade English

Re:Cylon's are so cute when they're that young. (1)

HTH NE1 (675604) | more than 3 years ago | (#34423200)

Re:Cylon's are so cute when they're that young.

Looks like someone didn't pass 3rd grade English

Perhaps he thought Cylon was an acronym for "Cybernetic Lifeform Node" (ref: Caprica) and was following an old rule that says abbreviations are to be made plural with "'s".

Just blowing stuff up that seem strange? (1)

kaptink (699820) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422032)

Doesnt the bomb squad have on of those briefcase sized substance analysers like they do at airports to detect explosives? (http://www.morphodetection.com/) .. Or a hand held xray scope? (http://www.njlawman.com/Technology/Handheld-Xray.htm) .. Just a bit safer than blowing up whatever it is. What if it contained a bioweapon or a malicious wifi device that may be evidence?

Re:Just blowing stuff up that seem strange? (2)

uncanny (954868) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422120)

Doesnt the bomb squad have on of those briefcase sized substance analysers like they do at airports to detect explosives? p>

Yeah, that sounds like as much fun!

Re:Just blowing stuff up that seem strange? (2)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422260)

Dude, if you have the ok to blow shit up, you blow shit up!

Re:Just blowing stuff up that seem strange? (1)

kaptink (699820) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422446)

Now that you put it in that perspective, I totally agree :)

Space Invader (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34422094)

Remindes me of 'Space Invader' the street artist who used tiles as a medium representing pixels.

http://www.artofthestate.co.uk/graffiti/the%20toasters_space_invaders_graffiti.htm

He could keep Homeland Security Theater quite busy..

One thing I never understood... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34422132)

How is detonating a potentially explosive device safe?

Re:One thing I never understood... (1)

JSBiff (87824) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422612)

Well, the alternative is to allow it be blown up at a time NOT of your choosing.

Police can evacuate the area, make sure no one will get hurt, then blow up it, so it does minimal damage - maybe it damages some structures, but no one gets hurt.

If they try to inspect the device, to figure it out, and try to disarm it, well, it might just blow up in the bomb squads face, so remote detonation minimizes human casualties.

At least, that's how I've always understood it - I'm no expert and don't pretend to be one.

Re:One thing I never understood... (1)

DrgnDancer (137700) | more than 3 years ago | (#34423026)

I'm not an explosive expert either, but I worked with enough of them in Iraq to say you're pretty much dead on. Actually disarming a device is reserved for situations where you can't or don't have time to evacuate the area. It's nearly always safer and less expensive to blow the device in place. Bomb squad guys don't have any more desire than the rest of us to get blown to pieces, as a rule.

"Are you serious?" (1)

seyyah (986027) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422186)

rom the article: "'Are you serious?' asked Denver resident Justin Kent, 26, when police stopped him from proceeding down 20th Street. Kent said that he lived just past the closed area, but was told he would have to go around via Park Avenue.'"

Nooooo, not around Park Avenue!!!!! But he lived just past the closed area!!!!

Re:"Are you serious?" (1)

pspahn (1175617) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422362)

Ha, that's what I thought. It's an extra two minutes, lazy douche.

Wait for the law suit (3, Interesting)

gurps_npc (621217) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422210)

When they claim that the robot was a hoax bomb attempt, instead of admitting that the cops were too stupid to tell the difference between a toy and a bomb.

Walmart sells these for a couple bucks (1)

Dreben (220413) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422218)

Denver PD has been having their share of publicity problems lately but this is ridiculous. What's next, detonating the toy department at Walmart?

Nuke it from orbit... (3, Funny)

jacks0n (112153) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422250)

It's the only way to be sure.

I for one welcome our... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34422268)

DHS overloards.

Take that you evil robot overlords!

It wasn't Boston this time... (2)

meerling (1487879) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422282)

I'm surprised the Denver cops think a fairly normal looking toy is strange looking and suspicious. This kind of stupidity seems to usually be Boston cops.
I'm betting it was just some guerrilla art, look for more small toys to be cemented around town.
At 8" it wouldn't have had enough explosives from that positioning to do any real damage to that bridge support even if it was solid tritonal.

Can anyone out there identify that toy from the photo? I'm betting it's hollow plastic and at least partially articulated.

On a side note, I wonder if they're going to start profiling teddy bears next...

Re:It wasn't Boston this time... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34422794)

Sadly the device the bomb squad used to safely remove it, probably had more explosive power than could have been put in that toy.

Here's my solution. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34422346)

Padded suit. Baseball bat. Swing. Done.

Nuff said.

Seriously, how much boom could be in that kind of size of toy frame if you consider electronics and detonator? Did they think someone actually managed to hide drilling through what the toy was glued to?

I can just see a movie parody of this -- cops cringing before the Evil Threatening Toy of DOOM! 'What do we do?! What do we DO?!?!" "Don't panic! We'll get the assault squad, the bomb squad, and the 'WTF is that' squad!"
Seriously, there should be a movie called 'Terrorized!' where stupid, unjustified paranoia rules the USA... or would that be a documentary?

I must admit, it looks kind of vicious. (1)

moxsam (917470) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422412)

Occupying the abutment like an evil overlord would occupy his throne, the kids must have thought placing it there.

Perfectly good way to deal with the problem... (1)

Notyourpapa (1943748) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422480)

...just blow the sh/t up...then ask questions. A few years back I was in Toronto and a lunch pail got blown up...death to a ham and cheese sub in a subway entrance. Considering cost for removal it just made sense.

If you read TFA, (1, Informative)

Bocaj (84920) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422524)

You might notice that the robot was "cemented" to the structure. It wasn't just a misplaced toy. Police found that odd enough to be better safe than sorry. I see this as a win. I don't care if looks like a ham sandwich, if someone permanently attaches it to a supporting structure like that, it should be taken seriously. Even if it was just a prank, stunt, promotional gimmick, or just the act of a disturbed mind, this kind of thing should carry serious consequences.

Re:If you read TFA, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34422852)

I hate that we live in a society that has people that think this way about everything anymore

Re:If you read TFA, (1)

dr2chase (653338) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422976)

So what? As many others above have said, any random piece of trash or roadkill, could be a bomb. What's so important about being cemented down?

The "war on terror" is turning into the "war on weird". If you don't conform (like the guy with bagpipes in his carry-on, or the woman with LEDs on her T-shirt here in Boston), you get special scrutiny. Terrorists don't put bombs in rare, weird things -- they put them in everyday things, like backpacks, or cars, or rental trucks. They work hard to make them look exactly like printer cartridges, to take a recent example.

This sort of thing is an appalling, ineffective waste of money, and infringes on our right to be weird.

Re:If you read TFA, (1)

operagost (62405) | more than 3 years ago | (#34423114)

Well, while I still think their response is a bit goofy, you cement things to keep them from moving. Having your bomb move from where you placed it could be bad.

Re:If you read TFA, (1)

MobyDisk (75490) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422992)

I don't care if looks like a ham sandwich, if someone permanently attaches it to a supporting structure like that, it should be taken seriously

And so began the string of phony ham sandwich bombs, ultimately forcing the US government into bankruptcy. The head of the Boston bomb squad was quoted as saying "Thank God the terrorists haven't discovered bologna!"

Re:If you read TFA, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34423106)

Back when men were real men in America, there was a word for people who crap themselves over such trivial incidents and whom demand wildly disproportionate consequences: pussy.

Our remaining WW2 veterans must constantly question if their sacrifices were worth it.

Re:If you read TFA, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34423184)

"should carry serious consequences"

You are completely insane.

Title based questions (1)

Rolgar (556636) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422544)

Did the robot like the cliche dinner and a movie?
Did the robot order the most expensive thing on the menu and follow it with dessert?
What type of movie did the robot want to see?
Did robot invite the Bomb Squad in when it was dropped off?

Mom, I want to blow up toys when I grow up! (1)

lmcgeoch (1298209) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422606)

zomg, what a cool job!

When did we become afraid of everything? (2)

whyde (123448) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422724)

I'm waiting for the day when some nutjob fashions a piece of doggie-poo looking substance out of brown-painted C4 with an embedded motion-sensitive detonator.

There, I've said it. Let everyone be scared of any stray pile of poop laying on a city sidewalk. Perhaps then, when we try to ban dogs completely, people may wake up and see that it's just not worth going through life terrified of everything.

Ugh.

Hm...I wonder.. (1)

SuperSlacker64 (1918650) | more than 3 years ago | (#34422800)

Murray said that police have no leads on who put the robot there, or why they did it.

Ten to one odds say they were bored and wanted to see what would happen.

CO Dept of Transportation (CDOT) (1)

Haxzaw (1502841) | more than 3 years ago | (#34423040)

CDOT did a call in of a suspicious object a few weeks ago in Colorado Springs. The suspicious object? A chunk of concrete with the base of a light pole and some wires sticking out of it had been discarded along a two lane country road away from everything and everyone. They had the road closed for ages while the bomb squad checked it out. The real tragedy is that most of the citizenry applaud such overreaction because they feel safer.
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