Agreement outlines Live PD’s access to Van Buren deputies

Southwest Michigan
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PAW PAW, Mich. (WOOD) — The Van Buren County Sheriff’s Office’s deal to be featured on “Live PD” gives the A&E TV show largely unfettered access to the department.

Last week, county commissioners approved an access agreement with Big Fish Entertainment. Effective Dec. 19, 2019, it is good for one year with an option for a second and automatic annual renewal.

Obtained by News 8 via the Freedom of Information Act, the deal (PDF) gives Live PD access “without limitation” to nearly everything going on at the department, including inside the police station and jail, patrols, and investigations. It also asks for between three and five “key characters” to follow.

Despite the show’s name, it’s not actually live: everything airs on a 10- to 25-minute delay. The sheriff’s office will have some veto power based on concerns about things like accuracy and security, though the producer will always have the final say on what airs and what doesn’t.

The agreement does not include any language that would protect the privacy of civilians who have contact with deputies.

The document did not list any details about compensation.

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