MIDLAND COUNTY, TX (KWES) - The Midland County Sheriff's Department is getting national attention on TV. They're part of multiple law enforcement agencies featured in a reality TV show that follows police on the everyday job.
It's normal to see patrol units driving around at night but for the next eight weeks some might have an extra passenger. Be careful because if you get pulled over, you might end up on national TV.
"It's just stuff that we put up with every day," said Midland County Sheriff Gary Painter.
Gary Painter's 31 years as sheriff, Midland's population, square footage and oil well count are all things highlighted on the police reality show, Live PD on A&E.
"There's a lot of traffic stops, there will be DWIs, we'll go on disturbance call," said Painter. "We want to show the side of Midland that is beneficial for the community. We're no different than any other community, there's crime everywhere."
Midland is the first county in Texas on the show. Each episode features multiple law enforcement agencies.
Painter was approached about the show by a former sheriff in Oregon, John Bunnell.
Painter met Bunnell at a National Sheriff's Convention. Bunnell went on to host World's Wildest Police Videos, appeared on Cops and America's Most Wanted.
For Painter, it was a no brainer to say yes.
"I think it's putting a good foot forward, not just for the community but for law enforcement in this community," said Painter. "It shows we're active, that we're very intelligent and that we work."
As for the national attention the department is getting, Painter said it isn't distracting the deputies who volunteered to let the crews ride with them.
"Once you get to working you forget about the camera," said Painter. "You get out, do your job, handle your business, you're focused on your safety and the safety of the people you got with you."
Sheriff Painter said watching the video will serve as a training method and hopes it will give the community insight on the fears they face every day.
Live PD airs on Fridays on A&E.