Sean Penn, Kathy Griffin and more blast ‘used car salesman’ Dan Abrams after he struggles to defend cancelled ‘Live PD’ in CNN interview

Sean Penn, Kathy Griffin and more blast ‘used car salesman’ Dan Abrams after he struggles to defend cancelled ‘Live PD’ in CNN interview
Image via Screengrab.

No sooner had the long-running “Cops” been canceled than another police-oriented reality show, “Live PD” (formerly hosted by Dan Abrams) was canceled by A&E. The show has been in the news a lot this week because of Javier Ambler, a black man who died in police custody in 2019 and — like George Floyd on May 25 — used the words “I can’t breathe.” The show had footage of the last moments of Ambler’s life. CNN’s Brianna Keilar, on Thursday, grilled Abrams Ambler’s death, asking why the video in Ambler’s case was “destroyed.”

Abrams told Keilar that “Live PD” had a policy of keeping video recordings for a few weeks and then disposing of them; Brianna Keilar, however, stressed that in Ambler’s case, “The reverse is true here. Destroying the video actually protected the police.” And Keilar wanted to know if there was an exception to the “Live PD” policy of destroying videos when someone died; Abrams acknowledged that “there should have been.”

Abrams maintained that the “Live PD” policy was in place to avoid “becoming an arm of law enforcement.” But as Keilar explained, the show ended up doing exactly that. And Keilar is receiving an abundance of high praise on Twitter for conducting a tough interview.

Abrams’ critics are not satisfied with his explanation — especially actor Sean Penn. When Keilar interviewed Penn following her interview with Abrams, he told her, “It was great to see you challenge that used car salesman, selling everything and saying nothing about what’s going on the country right now.”

Comedian Kathy Griffin posted, “Wow, @brikeilarcnn conducted a REAL INTERVIEW with Dan Abrams, host of #LivePDCancelled. Yikes, Dan melted down and got hostile with her. #BLM.”

You can read more reactions below:

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. AlterNet’s journalists work tirelessly to counter the traditional corporate media narrative. We’re here seven days a week, 365 days a year. And we’re proud to say that we’ve been bringing you the real, unfiltered news for 20 years—longer than any other progressive news site on the Internet.

It’s through the generosity of our supporters that we’re able to share with you all the underreported news you need to know. Independent journalism is increasingly imperiled; ads alone can’t pay our bills. AlterNet counts on readers like you to support our coverage. Did you enjoy content from David Cay Johnston, Common Dreams, Raw Story and Robert Reich? Opinion from Salon and Jim Hightower? Analysis by The Conversation? Then join the hundreds of readers who have supported AlterNet this year.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure AlterNet remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to AlterNet, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.

alternet logo

Tough Times

Demand honest news. Help support AlterNet and our mission to keep you informed during this crisis.