Mere hours after the official cancellation of A&E’s highly rated show Live PD, host Dan Abrams is speaking out.
“I am frustrated and sad because I truly believed in the mission of the show to provide transparency in policing,” he said in an interview published on Thursday (June 11.) “I completely agree with advocates calling for more body cams on officers and more uniform rules for their use. It seems to me that the antidote to bad policing and officers is transparency and that means more body cams and more shows like Live PD.”
Live PD is now the second show cancelled this week due to, in part, racial tensions surrounding the death of George Floyd and ongoing protests over police brutality. Days before the beginning of its 30thseason, Cops was also cancelled by Paramount Network.
“It’s important to distinguish Live PD from a show like Cops that just presented a highlight reel of crazy moments,” Abrams added. “Live PD was totally different — following the officers in real time, in their real environments showing the nerves, the adrenaline, the bad, the good, and often the mundane and boring. I will miss it all.”
Following the announcement, Abrams took to Twitter to share his disappointment.
“Shocked & beyond disappointed about this. 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.”
Shocked & beyond disappointed about this. 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. . .https://t.co/WWh7fDrig2
— Dan Abrams (@danabrams) June 11, 2020
However, in the case of Live PD, the cancellation also stems from the fact that the show’s crew was filming Williamson County Sheriff’s deputies last year when Javier Ambler died during an arrest. The footage was never shown on the show, according to Abrams.
“The show was on hiatus when the incident occurred and the show was filming for future episodes,” Abrams says. “It never aired on the show. (Live PD didn’t air it) because it involved a fatality and A&E standards and practices didn’t permit us to show a fatality on the show.”
Yet, A&E still felt the need to make a crucial decision on the show that had just been renewed by the network for 160 new episodes.
“This is a critical time in our nation’s history and we have made the decision to cease production on Live PD,” A&E said in a statement to 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.”