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‘Killer Robot’ Suit Awaits Ruling on Japanese Maker

May 24, 2018, 8:35 PM

A wrongful death suit alleging a robot escaped from its work area at a Michigan auto parts factory and killed a woman awaits a ruling on whether the robot’s maker can be sued in that state.

The suit is an example of litigation associated with emerging technologies, an area that’s expected to increase.

William Holbrook sued Fanuc Corp., the Japan-based robotics manufacturer, and other companies allegedly responsible for the robotics and safety systems at Ventria Ionia LLC bumper and trailer-hitch assembly plant in Ionia, Mich.

That’s where Wanda Holbrook, his wife, worked as a technician.

“A failure of one...

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