John Langley, creator of 'Cops' TV series, dies during off-road race in Mexico

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John Langley, the creator of the long-running TV series “Cops,” has died after suffering an apparent heart attack Saturday during a road race in Mexico. He was 78. 

Langley died in Baja, Mexico, during the Coast to Coast Ensenada-San Felipe 250 off-road race, family spokeswoman Pam Golum said. 

He was also an executive producer for “Cops,” which followed on-duty police officers throughout the U.S. and was among the first reality series when it first aired in March of 1989.

John Langley, creator of the television show "Cops" answers questions during a news conference at police headquarters in Omaha, Neb on Aug. 27, 2014.  (AP Photo/Nati Harnik, FIle)

“Cops” originally debuted on FOX until it moved to Paramount Network — then called Spike TV — in 2013.

Langley and production partner Malcolm Barbour had shopped the idea for years before it was picked up and ran for more than 30 seasons. 

The series was pulled from the air last year in response to the growing civil unrest spurred by the death of George Floyd in police custody.

“‘Cops’ is not on the Paramount Network and we don’t have any current or future plans for it to return,” a Paramount Network spokesperson said in a statement obtained by Fox News last June. 

Some versions of the show still air internationally in syndication.

Langley was born in Oklahoma City and raised in Los Angeles. He graduated from California State University, Dominguez Hills, and served in the U.S. Army in the early 1960s.

Langley was also a producer on the 2009 film “Brooklyn’s Finest,” directed by Antoine Fuqua and starring Richard Gere and Don Cheadle.

He was an off-road racing enthusiast and frequently drove in events like the one on Saturday.

Langley is survived by his son and producing partner, Morgan, who oversees their company Langley Productions; another son, Zak; two daughters, Sara Langley Dews and Jennifer Blair; his wife, Maggie, and seven grandchildren.

Fox News’ Nate Day and the Associated Press contributed to this report

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