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Co-creator of reality show ‘Cops’ dies in car race in Mexico

John Langley, creator of 'Cops'
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John Langley, the co-creator and executive producer of hit reality TV show “Cops,” died at the age of 78 during a car race in Mexico.

Roxana Castro, a spokesperson for Record Off-Road Races, told The Hill that Langley suffered a heart attack while participating in an off-road race in Baja California, Mexico.

Roman Castro, director of Record Off-Road Races, told CNN on Monday that rescue teams acted quickly to treat Langely, but he did not survive

Langley’s family, in a statement shared with The Hill, said he “died of an apparent heart attack” on Saturday while “competing in the Coast to Coast Ensenada-San Felipe 250 off road race.”

According to a bio on his production company website, Langley earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in English and served in the U.S. Army before venturing into the entertainment world, working as a screenwriter and publicist.

Langley along with Malcolm Barbour co-created and produced the hit reality TV show “Cops,” premiering on Fox in 1989.

The show ran for more than 30 years until it was canceled in 2020 amid debate over the depiction of policing and police officers during nationwide protests of social injustice and police reform.

Langley also wrote and co-directed the award-winning 1983 documentary “Cocaine Blues” and directed the 1999 feature film “Dogwatch,” according to his bio.

He was an avid off-road racer, a hobby he shared with his sons.

The family’s statement said “Langley’s son Morgan, who oversees Langley Productions and is an executive producer of ‘Cops,’ survives him as does his wife Maggie, son Zak, daughter Sarah Langley Dews and seven grandchildren — as well as his daughter, Jennifer Blair.”

“We were very excited for the participation of John of his team, where unfortunately he said goodbye to us in this life race. We look forward to the prompt resignation of his family and friends,” Roxanda Castro said in a statement to The Hill.

Updated at 5:28 p.m.

Tags California COPS John Langley Mexico

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