Stuckart proposes ordinance to put restrictions on shows like ‘Live PD’

Stuckart proposes ordinance to put restrictions on shows like ‘Live PD’

Spokane’s city council president is trying to restrict how reality shows that follow law enforcement operate in the city.

Council President Ben Stuckart has drafted a new ordinance that would put new restrictions on reality shows like ‘Live PD’ and ‘Cops,’ which embed themselves with officers.

Spokane City has a contract with the production company that creates ‘Cops,’ and there are already stipulations in that contract. Stuckart says he wants to apply similar restrictions on all reality-TV shows that follow law enforcement, like ‘Live PD.’ ‘Live PD’ works with the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office.

The new rules would require that all reality shows get a business license with the city, city employees would be allowed to decline participation in the show, the city would be allowed to review footage before it airs on TV, and the ordinance would define who can consent to being on TV, which would exclude people who are inebriated and mentally ill.

Stuckart says these rules are in line with the contract the city has with the company that produces ‘Cops.’ He hopes the ordinance will discourage ‘Live PD’ from filming within the city.

“That’s why I want to pass these restrictions is so that Live PD, when they’re out in the county, and they cross into the city lines, they have to do these things. And so I’m hoping what they do is say okay, we’ll just stay out in the county,” Stuckart said.

He says reality shows like ‘Live PD’ over-represent minorities as those who commit crimes, and makes crime in the City of Spokane appear worse than what actual statistics show.

Not everyone thinks there should be less filming in Spokane though. The Spokane Police Department says shows like ‘Cops’ portray police in a positive light and give a glimpse into what life is like for officers.

Stuckart now plans to file that ordinance for council consideration.