Live PD continues to develop the legend of Lt. Danny Brown

A&E's "Live PD" Cast: Dan Abrams, Sean "Sticks" Larkin, Tom Morris Jr. Photo Credit: An Rong Xu/Courtesy of A&E.
A&E's "Live PD" Cast: Dan Abrams, Sean "Sticks" Larkin, Tom Morris Jr. Photo Credit: An Rong Xu/Courtesy of A&E. /

Live PD has made stars of police officers, but none moreso than the ongoing legend of Richland County Sheriff’s Department Lt. Danny Brown.

The A&E series Live PD has turned many cops into household names, but only one has turned into a living legend: Lt. Danny Brown of the Richland County Sheriff’s Department.

It’s not just that Danny Brown is a phenomenal officer; he’s one of the best, if not the best, who’s been featured on the show. He sets the standard for how to interact with the public, how to take a situation down a couple notches, and how to be fair but also firm. He’s everything a cop should be and Richland County is lucky to have him.

But what he does on Live PD is on a whole other level. It’s as if while we’re playing checkers, he’s playing chess with one hand tied behind his back.

Danny Brown has a knack for appearing in episodes he’s not scheduled to be in. It hasn’t just happened once or twice; it’s a running gag now to spot Danny Brown whenever the show cuts to Richland County, because even though he’s not in the lineup he’s there somewhere. He’s like a much cooler version of Waldo.

As if that’s not interesting enough, Lt. Brown’s skills at detecting marijuana have become legendary. He’s so good at detecting it that there’s another running joke that he could be his own drug-sniffing dog. When he appeared in the Live PD studio, host Dan Abrams quipped that some of the crew didn’t come in to work that night because of their guest. And the thing is, that joke is entirely plausible.

That’s what’s great about Danny Brown on Live PD. He’s not just a fan-favorite officer; he’s turned into a larger than life sort of urban legend. The Bogeyman is scared of Danny Brown.

And we should acknowledge more what he’s contributed to the success of the series. With the turnover Live PD has experienced, particularly over the last year, a number of the officers who made the show a hit have left the lineup and the viewing experience hasn’t been the same. But Brown and his equally talented colleagues in Richland—including but not limited to Addy Perez, Mark Laureano, Steven Tapler and Garo Brown (no relation)—are still there.

They’ve been the foundation for the show. Particularly when Danny Brown is involved, there’s always something worth talking about. And the best thing for any TV show is viewers talking about it.

It honestly baffles the mind how the Live PD cameras manage to find him when they’re not supposed to. Magicians have a vanishing act; well, Danny Brown has an appearing act, and made his best appearance yet a few weeks ago when he turned up in the very first scene of the episode—while still not in the lineup. The only way it gets funnier if he’s hiding behind Dan Abrams in the control room during the show’s cold open.

Add that to his skills detecting drugs that should see him classified as a K9 officer, and it feels like he must be superhuman. But the truth is, Danny Brown is just unbelievably good at his job, which makes him a joy to watch—and an integral part of Live PD. We need more police officers like him in the world, and that’s what we want to see in our true crime shows.

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Live PD airs Fridays and Saturdays at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT on A&E.