Saturday, March 8, 2008
ATLANTA, Georgia (CNN) -- It's midnight on the streets of Atlanta, and bar owner Rufus Terrill patrols his neighborhood with a rolling crime fighter of his own creation. Meet "Bum-bot," as Terrill describes it; others in his neighborhood call it simply, "Robocop."
This former BBQ smoker is armed with a water gun to chase off bums and drug dealers in downtown Atlanta.
It's a barbecue smoker mounted on a three-wheeled scooter, and armed with an infrared camera, spotlight, loudspeaker and aluminum water cannon that shoots a stream of icy water about 20 feet.
Operated by remote control, the robot spotlights trespassers on property down the street from his bar, O'Terrill's. Using a walkie-talkie, Terrill belts out through the robot's loudspeaker, "That's private property. You guys need to get out of here."
Terrill is chasing out unsavory-looking characters from a street corner that resembles a drug dealer's dream at night. More than 20 suspicious people were seen huddling in the dark in the front driveway and side parking lot on this night. Some were seen openly making drug deals. Video Watch "Bum-bot" in action »
But during the day, it's where young children frolic on a nearby playground at a the Beacon of Light Daycare Center in downtown Atlanta. It has become a nightmare for day care operator Lydia Meredith.
"This whole square is enveloped with homeless people and drug dealers, defecating, urinating, prostituting -- the whole nine yards. And the overflow of that behavior, we get to cleanup every morning," she says.
Meredith says people often toss used syringes and condoms onto the playground.
Terrill, an engineer by trade, is also a board member at the day care center. Tired of cleaning up after the shady characters, he decided to take action. That's when he built his downtown Darth Vader of sorts.
"He's a neighborhood vigilante," says Meredith, "and when he came up with this -- you know, I call it Robocop -- I said, 'Praise God.' "
The daycare center is a block from a homeless shelter. Meredith has a security guard at the center who leaves in the early evening. "They know when the guard leaves," she says. "They know when the cleaning crew leaves and then here comes the drug dealers to prey on the homeless people."
Anita Beatty, the director of the shelter, is suspicious of the barbecue-smoker robot. "I just think the whole 'Robocop' spraying people is a little freaky. We really need some police protection in this neighborhood. I think it's confusing the issue. I think the issue is homeless people. They are being confused with the folks who prey on them and sell them drugs," she says.
Atlanta police patrol the area, but say it's difficult to stay on top of the large number of people who roam the streets in the area late at night.
Police Major Lane Hagin says the robot is definitely a different crime-fighting idea. "There's no problem with the robot going up and down the street or being visible or any of the other things it does -- with the exception of spraying water on people."
Hagin adds, "Then, it becomes an assault no matter where it happens."
So far no one has filed charges against Terrill or the robot. But one homeless man who declined to give his name followed Terrill and his robot down the street and laughingly told him, "I know about you. I can sue you for assault."
Terrill says he's not hurting anyone and often sprays the water to the side of loiterers as a ploy to get them to move on. He's also not about to back down.
"If you're throwing condoms out on the side of the playground, if you're throwing needles, you're throwing crack pipes out there, I'm not going to let those kids be out there like that. I'm going to stop you."
Terrill bought his bar four years ago knowing nothing about the restaurant business. He ran unsuccessfully for lieutenant governor of Georgia in 2006. He's had ongoing problems with people breaking into his bar and stealing things, but it was the day care center problems that spurred him on to create the robot.
Some of Terrill's bar patrons say they've seen a difference in the neighborhood. Susanne Coe lives nearby.
"I've seen a marked change simply with this robot that doesn't have any power of arrest. It does scare people and to be honest with you I'm grateful for it," she says.
On this night, as Terrill and his robot make their way to the street corner, he shines the robot's spotlight on the parking lot of the daycare center. One by one, the shadowy figures stand up, walk away and saunter down the street.
"Ninety-nine percent of the time, when I go up there and once I turn the spotlight on and I talk to them through the speaker, they leave," he says. E-mail t
EUROPE'S FINEST TOPLESS HONEYS
Ava Fiore is a Playboy model and 2002 Golden Gloves champion boxer. She was arrested on Wednesday night on I 80 east in Kimball, Nebraska. P...
Wow Paulina still very perky at 44 ! Read about Paulas interesting childhood escaping the iron curtain THE NILES LESH PROJECT - ALL...
Yes ALL of these women are over 50 years old, sure some of them have had some work, but I mean come on a few are grand mothers (GMILFS)!, a...
Where: Lekeitio, in the Basque region of Spain. What: Antzar Eguna or "Goose Day" has its roots in at least 350 years of Spanish i...
OSBORN COX? - NOW THAT IS A GREAT NAME !!!
Wow what a week SuperBowl hype and the Pirelli Calendar featuring Terry Richardson's fantastic photos of the world most beautiful toples...
Missed it ? - The Archives !
- ► 2010 (80)
- ► 2009 (319)
- BOB HOPE - ARE ZOMBIES LIKE REPUBLICANS ?
- AL QAEDA DEBUNKS 911 CONSPIRACY THEORIES
- TOP 5 FHM 2008 CALENDER GIRLS !
- BUSH HEARS THE FIRST AMENDMENT EXERCISED !
- KEITH RICHARDS LIKES TO GET HIGH ???
- KEVIN SPACEY DOES IMPRESSIONS ! ! !
- WORLDS OLDEST RECORDING - APRIL 10TH 1860 !
- OOOOHHHH, YYYYEAHHH ! ! !
- SARAH LARSON - WILD & CRAZY DAYS ???
- DAKOTA JOHNSON - CELEBRITY OFFSPRING
- HILARY CLINTON - CALL OF DUTY ???
- MO ROCCA - THE SPRING BREAK VOTERS !
- PARIS HILTON - BELLY DANCES ON TURKISH TV
- SIMONA FUSCO - BIKINI ISSUES ???
- WHAT IS THE TITS BUILDING ???
- RON BURGANDY INTERVIEWS JESUS ???
- YouTube Yobs - chase top video off the charts ???...
- CRUZ SISTERS - PENELOPE & MONICA
- ELIZABETH HURLEY - STILL GOT IT ?
- KELLY BROOK - NUTS MAGAZINE
- SUPER SIZED (235LB) BALLERINAS ???
- ANNA KORNIKOVA - ERICSSON OPEN
- STRANGE VIRAL VIDEO HILARY CLINTON SPOOF ?
- HO NO !!! NOT AGAIN ???
- ADRIANA LIMA - NUDE IN APRIL GQ !
- BOYS - BEWARE OF FRIENDLY STRANGERS !
- DON'T QUIT YOUR DAY JOB ! ! !
- VINTAGE NEW YORK SKYSCAPER FUN ! ! !
- FINALLY - AN ELECTRIC CIGARETTE ???
- MARILYN MONROE - FIRST SCREEN APPEARANCE (1949)
- ALEXANDRA AMBROSIA - DELICIOSA ! ! !
- THE LIONS vs THE WATER BUFFALOES
- KEELEY HAZELL - TOPLESS CANDIDS !
- OMG - THEY ARE ALL RELATED ! ! !
- ASHLEY ALEXANDRA "KRISTEN" DUPRE YOUMANS ?
- CLAUDIA SCHIFFER - APRIL GQ
- DELTALINA - DELTA'S HOT PRE FLIGHT INFO BABE !
- SPENCER TUNICK - FOUR SEASONS - NYC
- THE SHOCKING TRUTH ABOUT PRINTER INK !
- WHAT DETERMINES EASTER DAY ???
- JESSICA ALBA- GOTHAM MAGAZINE - MAY 2008
- MARIAH CAREY - THE WEIRD AL INTERVIEW
- ANOTHER "REGULAR GUY " RAPPER ???
- EASTER IMAGES - AROUND THE WORLD !
- THE LAST SUPPER - POP CULTURE EDITION !
- PEEP SHOW !
- MORE CUTE ANIMAL PHOTOS ! ! !
- RON MEUCK - REALISTIC SCULPTURES
- GEMMA ATKINSON - LOADED MAGAZINE
- CHLOE MARSHALL - PLUS SIZE (16) BEAUTY
- ASHLEY ALEXANDER DUPRE - US MAGAZINE
- SIGNS FROM BEIJING - BAD CHINGLISH ?
- SPITZER - MCGREEVEY - PATTERSON "LATE NIGHT JOKES"...
- THE JACK NICHOLSON COOKOO CLOCK ???
- LENINGRAD COWBOYS & THE RED ARMY CHOIR "SWEET HOME...
- ASHLEY DUPRE - MORE WILD & CRAZY GIRL PIX
- MACHINE ELIMINATES THE NEED FOR HUMANS ?
- MEET MEGHAN MCCAIN - DADDY'S GIRL ?
- GISELE BUNDCHEN - NUDE !
- BULGARIAN IDOL - ??? " WHOSE BAD" ???
- PHOTOSHOP DISASTERS ! ! !
- WHAT IS ZEITGEIST ???
- ASHLEY "KRISTEN" DUPRE - GONE WILD ???
- JENNIFER ANISTON - BIKINI FRIENDLY !
- PENIS FESTIVAL - ITS THAT TIME OF YEAR AGAIN !
- R E M & THE MUPPETS "FURRY HAPPY MONSTERS"
- SPACE TOY COMMERCIALS OF THE 1970'S !
- THE SUNDAY AFTERNOON SONG ???
- JOE ROGAN - THE MYSTERIES OF EGYPT
- ROBERT PLANT JAMS WITH LOCAL POLICE (1989)
- PAM ANDERSON - DEFIES GRAVITY ???
- CROP CIRCLES ? NO COCAINE CIRCLES ! ! !
- CAUTION - ROAD CLOSED FOR TOAD F**CKING ?
- WORLDS MOST EXPENSIVE CELLPHONE ?
- JERRY SIENFELD TELLS JOHNNY CARSON ABOUT HIS NEW S...
- SKIPPY SHOWS US HIS "METAL FACE" !!!
- IMPROV EVERYWHERE- FOODCOURT MUSICAL
- MISS PHILLIPINES CONTESTANT "FAMILY ISSUES" ?
- ST PATRICKS DAY - IRISH IMAGES !
- HAPPY ST PATRICKS DAY ! 2008
- MCGREEVEY'S AIDE STRIKES BACK ! ! !
- HOW IRISH IS O'BAMA REALLY ???
- IRAQ WAR HEARINGS - SNACK BREAK ???
- KIM KARDASHIAN - BACKSTAGE - LA FASHION WEEK
- JAPANS GREATEST INFOMERCIAL EVER ! ! !
- ELIOT'S KRISTEN - THE PERFECT BUSINESS MODEL ??
- Finally, Dutch say animal sex illegal !!!
- MADONNA - WILL NOT GO AWAY ! ! !
- PAPARAZZI PUMMELED BY NICOLE KIDMANS BODY GUARD !
- CLASSYCAT DOLLS - LA FASHION WEEK
- LESLIE & THE LY'S - ZOMBIE ZILLER ?
- ZIVITY - NAKED NETWORKING !!!
- HAPPY ST PATRICKS DAY ! - SERIOUSLY ?
- ASHLEY ALEXANDER DUPREE "KRISTEN"
- MORE ELIOT SPITZER JOKES PLEASE !
- THE INCREDIBLE HULK 2008 - TRAILER !
- ELIOT SPITZER - A COMEDIANS WET DREAM !
- ELIOT SPITZER - THE PASSION OF POLITICS ?
- WHO NEEDS A MOVIE - CANADAS GREATEST LOCAL AD !
- AMANDA OVERMYER - NAKED IDOL ???
- ▼ March (159)