Amazon Alexa calls police during domestic violence incident

Eduardo Barros.

A smart home device led authorities to the scene of an alleged domestic violence case in New Mexico earlier this week, picking up audio keywords that were (fortunately) confused as a device command.

Eduardo Barros was house-sitting with his girlfriend and her daughter in Tijeras on Sunday night when a verbal argument became physical.

During the confrontation, Barros picked up a firearm and threatened to kill the woman, asking her, “Did you call the Sheriffs?”

The Amazon Alexa device assumed that Barros was asking it to call the police and dialed 911.

According to ABC News, the authorities listened in and sent Benalillo County deputes to the scene, where they managed to remove the injured woman and her daughter.

“The unexpected use of this new technology to contact emergency services has possibly helped save a life. This amazing technology definitely helped save a mother and her child from a very violent situation,” Bernalillo County Sheriff Manuel Gonzales III said.

Not long after getting the victims out of the house, a SWAT team and negotiator unit were sent in to take Barros into custody. He surrendered after a few hours.

Barros is facing charges of possession of a firearm or destructive device by a felon, aggravated battery against a household member, aggravated assault against a household member and false imprisonment. He will be held at the local county jail without bond until a hearing date is set.

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