Kalamazoo City Manager Jim Ritsema issued a statement late Thursday afternoon, saying the City of Kalamazoo was cancelling an agreement to let the TV show "Cops" film in the city later this year, bowing to public pressure, that the program would present the city and its residents in a negative light.

Ritsema's full statement reads:

“Earlier this year, the City of Kalamazoo and the Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety reached an agreement to allow the Cops television program to film along KDPS this summer. In making this agreement, we saw it as an opportunity to highlight the relationships between Public Safety and our community along with the exceptional work that the men and women of KDPS do every day.  This was a unique opportunity to showcase the community-focus of the entire department.

Many members of our community have expressed concerns about how the people of Kalamazoo may be portrayed in this program. We understand that sometimes when people interact with KDPS it is while they are in distress or in extreme circumstances. Although we retained approval for all content that could be aired, we understand and respect the concerns that have been raised. Because of this, we have decided to cancel the agreement and will not be allowing the Cops program to film in Kalamazoo.

I appreciate the members of our community who have brought these concerns to our attention. As we strive to create a better city and a stronger community for everyone, I hope that you will continue to share your suggestions, experiences, and concerns.”

While the Cops TV show is no longer as popular as it once was, the show has been on  television for thirty years, since 1989. It originally ran on the Fox network, but in the past six years, has been relegated to cable channel Spike, which is now known as Paramount.

Losing the revenue of a television crew filming in the city will hurt some hospitality related business, but the city has chosen to not cast a spotlight on its less than positive aspects.





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