Thursday, August 28, 2014


Brice Dion, a crew member of the long-running reality TV show Cops, was shot dead by Omaha cops during a shootout with a robber who was carrying a pellet gun

There are many so-called reality shows on TV because they are much cheaper to produce than half-hour situation comedies and one or two-hour dramas. Most of those shows are trashy and have little if any resemblance to normal everyday life.

Cops has been one of the longest running reality shows on TV, having debuted in 1989. It has been filmed with over 140 police agencies in this country and with the police in three foreign countries. On Wednesday, in Omaha , Nebraska, the reality cop show became too real for one of the crew members.

An Omaha cop was responding to another robbery call when he observed a robbery in progress as he was driving by a Wendy’s fast food restaurant. He called for backup. As the cops, along with the TV crew, entered the restaurant they were confronted by 32-year-old Cortez Washington, a Kansas parolee, who appeared to be carrying a pistol. A chaotic shootout followed. Washington was able to fee out of the burger joint before collapsing in a dead heap on the outside.

Unfortunately, the police gunfire also took out 38-year-old Bryce Dion who had been a crew member with the Cops TV show for seven years. He was hit as the cops were shooting at the fleeing robber. According to the Associated Press, “Dion was wearing a bullet-proof vest, but a single bullet that hit his arm "slipped into a gap in the vest" and entered his chest.”

What the cops thought was a real firearm turned out to be an Airsoft pellet gun which fires only plastic pellets. Had the cops know that, both Bryce Dion and Cortez Washington would be alive today.

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