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'Cops' Crew Member Dies While Filming Police Shootout

"Cops" crew member Bryce Dion was killed by a police bullet while filming a police shootout in Omaha, Nebraska.
Posted at 8:14 PM, Aug 27, 2014

A crew member of the show "Cops" was fatally shot Tuesday Night in Omaha, Nebraska during a police shootout. 

"Cops" is a syndicated reality show that follows police officers while they are on active duty. 

The show was filming an armed robbery at a Wendy's restaurant when audio technician Bryce Dion was struck by a bullet and later died in a local hospital. (Video via WOWT)

Omaha police shared evidence and details of Tuesday night's incident on their Twitter page

Police say upon hearing of the robbery, three armed officers along with the "Cops" staff entered the restaurant. They say the suspect, Cortez Washington, fired at police first and police then fired back.

Police fired more than 30 shots and a police bullet hit Dion while he was in the doorway to the restaurant. Washington was also killed.

Cops production company Langley Productions issued a statement saying, ​"Bryce Dion was a long term member of the Cops team and a very talented and dedicated person. We mourn his passing."

Police eventually found that Washington had only been using an airsoft gun to perform the robbery. In the conference, police noted the similarity of appearanceit has to a real handgun and defended their decision to use force. 

Police noted the "Cops" crew were all wearing bullet proof vests, but in Dion's case that was not enough. 

Police Chief Todd Schmaderer showed remorse for allowing the camera crew to come along with them when talking to media Wednesday; "I will have to live with this forever and if I'd had known this would happen of course I wouldn't have done it. "

This incident has many others questioning if a reality show crew should be following law enforcement around on active duty.

This Twitter user asked Omaha Police to reconsider allowing reality shows to tag along during live patrols. 

And many others posted on the police department's Facebook page, asking how something like this could happen in the first place. 

However, the "Cops" Facebook page is currently full of supportive posts wishing the show and Dion's family condolences. 

Omaha police did not say if they would continue to allow "Cops" crews to follow them on patrol.