(NewsNation Now) — A new law signed by Texas Governor Greg Abbott Wednesday bans law enforcement agencies from working with reality TV shows after a man’s 2019 death in police custody sparked calls for reform.
The bill known as “Javier Ambler’s Law” is named for the man who died an hour after his encounter with Williamson County, Texas deputies was filmed for the show “Live PD,” according to KXAN.
While the footage never aired on the now-canceled A&E reality show, the local sheriff and a county attorney employee were later indicted for allowing video evidence to be destroyed.
Former “Live PD” star Deputy James Craigmyle, a police K-9 instructor in Springfield, Missouri, disagrees with the law, saying such shows are valuable because they show viewers what law enforcement does.
“Everybody has a cell phone nowadays and everybody is quick to record or instant live the actions or interactions that law enforcement has across the community, and I think shows like Live PD show what we do on a daily basis,” Craigmyle said.
Most importantly, he said reality TV shows “humanize” officers while teaching viewers about policing.
“They’re actually learning laws, they’re learning what we can and can’t do, they’re learn what they can and can’t do, and I think it also allowed people to see we’re human,” Craigmyle said.