Sorry 'Live PD' fans, it looks like you'll have to find something else to watch on Friday and Saturday nights. A&E announced Wednesday that they have canceled the popular cable show that follows police officers around the United States amid nationwide protests against police brutality and the in-custody death of George Floyd.
“This is a critical time in our nation’s history and we have made the decision to cease production on Live PD,” said a statement from A&E obtained by Deadline. “Going forward, we will determine if there is a clear pathway to tell the stories of both the community and the police officers whose role it is to serve them. And with that, we will be meeting with community and civil rights leaders as well as police departments.”
The news broke on the same day The Paramount Network announced it would be canceling the long-running series, "Cops" amid the nationwide protests.
It appeared that "Live PD" host Dan Abrams was taken by surprise by the cancellation, as he shared his thoughts about the network's decision on Twitter.
"Shocked & beyond disappointed about this," he wrote. "To the loyal #LivePDNation please know I, we, did everything we could to fight for you, and for our continuing effort at transparency in policing. I was convinced the show would go on... More to come..."
On Tuesday, Abrams appeared confident the show would continue amid the protests against police departments.
"To all of you asking whether#LivePDcoming back... The answer is yes," said Abrams. "All of us associated with the show are as committed to it as ever. We are still discussing some specifics but I want to assure the #LivePDNation that we are not abandoning you."
"Live PD" has been criticized for showing a filtered version of policing neighborhood communities with at least one camera crew for the show capturing footage of a car chase that ended with the death of a 40-year-old black man in Texas.
A Texas prosecutor has accused the Williamson County Sheriff's Department (which participated in a "Live PD" filming in March 2019), of keeping footage of the chase under wraps after Javier Ambler died while being taken into custody.
On March 28, 2019, Williamson County Deputy J.J. Johnson attempted to pull Ambler over for driving with his high beams on. When Ambler refused to yield, the Live PD crew filmed the 22-minute chase, while the deputy narrated to the camera crew.
The chase ended after Ambler, a former postal worker, crashed his vehicle. Body camera footage from the incident showed Ambler telling officers he had heart problems and that he "can't breathe."
According to Travis County District Attorney Margaret Moore, the Williamson County Sheriff's Department has not cooperated with an investigation into the incident and had so far refused to release the "Live PD" footage.
In a statement, the sheriff's office said it was "ready and willing to participate in the investigation" and that they had not been contacted by Moore.
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