However, the policy was sent back to committee by San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors, in a 8-3 vote, on Tuesday, Dec. 6.
An alternate version of the policy, which precluded the use of deadly force by police robots currently used for bomb disposal and surveillance, was passed unanimously. The original policy approved in a first vote last week will now be reexamined at the Rules Committee.
Mayor London Breed had signaled her support for the original proposal, which is part of a larger policy governing police use of special and military equipment.
The debate over the use of the robots for lethal force has become contentious, with a handful of legislators vehemently opposing the measure and protests taking place in San Francisco. Those opposed believe the policy would give the San Francisco Police Department too much power, which they fear will be abused.
On the other hand, those supporting the legislation have pointed to the proliferation of mass shootings across the country, and the successful deployment of a killer robot in Dallas, Texas, as reason enough to employ the potentially life-saving technology.
In two minutes, we break down the debate for you in our video explainer. Take a look.
Mike Ege contributed additional reporting for this story.