Where Will We Draw the Line…Down the Line?
NHK (Tokyo, Japan) — Supreme Prosecutors Office is making world history today when it files formal felony vehicular manslaughter charges against a driver who crashed into and destroyed a 71-B nanny droid back in January.
According to the NHK, the severity of the charge stems from a mounting public pressure based on the local popularity of the nanny droid, affectionately known as Kobie, who nurtured hundreds of children over the last twenty years, and the perceived callousness of the driver, 36 year-old Shiro Ishii.
Never have any form of negligent death charges been leveled at a human in the destruction of an android. Reactions to the charges have divided the international community.
According to police reports, Kobie was escorting a class of 7 and 8 year-old children during a field trip when she was struck by Ishii’s Arctic Cynko and destroyed. Children who saw the accident screamed and cried. Others rushed into the street to help Kobie and narrowly missed being struck by traffic.
“Her body was completely crushed, crumpled beneath that car, and that blue fluid pouring out of her,” said Niagi Samo, one of many bystanders who rushed to comfort the children. “They could not be consoled. How they wailed. How they screamed and cried. It was horrible!”
News of Kobie’s destruction quickly spread throughout the Kantō region and quickly seeped through the global network. But it was Immersive Cocoon Club owner Shiro Ishii’s accident site behavior and dismissive comments on Google World that enraged locals and the international community, even bringing condemnation from world leaders. Following the accident, Ishii posted a video tirade on his Google profile, which has been removed, which included footage of his damage vehicle with the nanny-bot still crumpled beneath it.
‘My AC [Arctic Cynko] hit a f—— bot and it’s gonna f—— end up in the scrap yard. I had her for years. F—! I got laid in this thing.’
In the video he can be heard yelling at the children to stop their “F—— crying!” In a later post Ishii added:
‘I want to dedicate this day to my baby. She died in heroic fashion today protecting me when I crashed. In death may she know that because she committed the ultimate sacrifice, her driver will live on.’
“The one who won’t live on is [the nanny-bot] Kobie,” Ishiko Kukushi told NHK, whose daughter was cared for by Kobie while the single mother was enduring weeks of chemotherapy treatments. “Many in Tokyo consider her a living entity. And now she’s a victim of reckless murder.”
According the prosecutor’s office, Ishii was traveling at reckless speeds on Kiyosumi Street prior to the crash, which occurred outside the Edo-Tokyo Museum. While security footage revealed Ishii entering the intersection on a yellow light, witnesses reported seeing him run several stop signs and red lights immediately beforehand.
“I think the evidence is very strong,” an unnamed source inside the D.A.’s office told NHK. Mr. Ishii’s attorney sees things differently.
“This is a miscarriage of prosecutorial authority that has no hope of finding legitimacy in any world court. This will not stand,” says Defense Attorney Jisho Aumora. “If we must go to the United Nations to end this breach of my client’s human rights–so be it.”
Friends of Kobie the nanny-bot are unmoved by Mr. Ishii’s indignation at the charges. Tonight at Sakuragaoka elementary where Kobie worked for ten years there is a ceremony to dedicate a thousand origami cranes made by the children in her honor. Teacher Osa Dami says that the students will recover from their loss and move on.
“But we will never forgot Kobie, and the love she shared and taught to our kids.”