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Robert Bowling’s Robotoki Raided by the LAPD Because of a Pushed Panic Button

May 31, 2013 Written by Jason Dunning

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In what I personally thought was a weird Twitter joke, it turns out that Robert Bowling, President of Robotoki (Human Element, scheduled for 2015) and formerly of Infinity Ward, was being completely serious when he said last night that “the LAPD just stormed @robotoki with guns drawn and detained me as they cleared the building. I blame GHOST,” with this accompanying picture:

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All turned out to be okay though, as Robert added a few minutes later that “once they realized I wasn’t a hostage, [they] spent the next 30 mins talking about games and playing with our giant NES controller.”

To get to the bottom of why the LAPD was called to Robotoki in the first place, Polygon chatted with Bowling, who revealed that Robotoki “is equipped with a ‘panic’ alarm in case of an armed threat, which was installed yesterday. One of our designers, who shall not be shamed, pressed it on his way out because apparently when boys find buttons that they are unsure of, their first instinct is to push it.” The reason the studio has a panic button in the first place? “Game developers receive their fair share of death threats.” Robotoki hasn’t received any death threats, but Bowling was used to Infinity Ward receiving some.

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Once the LAPD showed up after getting the call, and noticed the statue of Ghost holding a gun, they entered the building and put Robert into custody while they cleared the rest of the rooms and floors. Bowling then added that it was about 15 minutes later when the officers showed up, laughing, because they had nearly taken down the statue of Ghost.

After all was said and done, no one was fined, but this goes to show that you should never push a button unless you know what it does.

Have you ever pushed a button you shouldn’t have? Let us know in the comments below.