Live PD host Dan Abrams has addressed the show's cancellation on Wednesday by A&E, as well as the controversy behind the footage producers shot that captured the death of Javier Amblar in Austin, Texas. Abrams answered questions that he asked himself on his website Law and Crime.
During his self-sustaining Q&A, Abrams once again spoke about the show's "long-standing policy to only keep footage for a few weeks absent a specific legal request to retain it," via Deadline. The footage in question showed Amblar's death at the hands of Williamson County police while in custody. The former host said that since the footage showed a fatality, "A&E standards and practices didn't permit us to show a fatality on the show." However, it's come under added scrutiny in light of massive protests across the U.S. calling for massive police reform.
Abrams also said that the show's attorneys told him that Travis County D.A. Margaret Moore apparently "never asked" for the footage, and neither did "anyone else in law enforcement or any other attorney make a request to them for the footage before this week, over one year later." However, Abrams did say he wished that "the tape had been preserved and the policy should have had an exception for this sort of situation."
"Many of us were advocating for a change in the policy before the show was canceled," Abrams said. "It would have been very difficult to watch but in an ongoing effort to show all sides of policing I wish this had been aired just as we had shown many other controversial moments that led to criticism of, and appreciation for, police." In addressing the cancellation, which some celebrated, he said he was "frustrated and sad because I truly believed in the mission of the show to provide transparency in policing." He also stressed that he agrees with "advocates calling for more body cams on officers and more uniform rules for their use," and called for transparency among police. This included "more body cams and more shows like Live PD."
"It's important to distinguish Live PD from a show like Cops that just presented a highlight reel of crazy moments," Abrams continued, referring to the other just-canceled reality TV show. "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." Abrams added that he "will miss it all."