DICKINSON, TX (KTRK) --Perhaps the most popular police officer ever entered a school cafeteria today in southeast Texas. Officer Shepherd swung by San Leon Elementary for lunch. He's a bit different.
Officer Shepherd is a robotic dog. He just joined the force as Dickinson Police Department's newest K-9 unit. He's controlled from afar and voiced by a nearby officer in real time. Shepherd is part of the department's commitment to community outreach. The robot cost $12,500, and private donations covered the expense.
"I've never seen this, and I've been in education for 16 years," said counselor Theresa Stewart. "The robotic is just a hit with the children."
Officer Shepherd is expected to visit more schools in the coming weeks.