Alaska PD

A still from the upcoming show “Alaska PD.” Photo via A&E news release

A new television show featuring familiar Fairbanks scenery and the local police department is set to debut on New Year’s Day.

The two-night series premiere of “Alaska PD” begins with the first episode at 6 p.m. Jan. 1 and continues with the second episode the following day at 5 p.m. The television show will run on the A&E network and follows law enforcement officers in Fairbanks, Kodiak, Kotzebue and Petersburg.

The idea of allowing a reality TV show to film the Fairbanks Police Department was initially brought to City Council in fall 2018 in a resolution proposed by Mayor Jim Matherly. The resolution cited the show might help with recruitment. A Fairbanks Police Department Employees Association meeting Monday noted that staffing for the Fairbanks department is still low.

Former Fairbanks Police Chief Eric Jewkes voiced his support of the idea. The City Council passed the resolution on Sept. 24, 2018.

A promotional video released on YouTube on Monday includes footage of a nighttime Cushman Street, as well as Fairbanks officers engaged in an arrest.

“Alaska has the most extreme climate, the harshest terrain and more violent crimes per capita than any other state,” a voiceover says as footage rolls. “With under half the police they need, the government has declared a public safety emergency.”

Produced by Engel Entertainment, the series also takes a look at recruitment of new officers from the Lower 48, according to an A&E news release.

“For the ‘newbies’ it is a trial by fire as they learn first-hand that policing, like everything else, is different in Alaska,” the release states.

See the trailer at bit.ly/AKPDTV

Contact staff writer Kyrie Long at 459-7510. Follow her on Twitter at twitter.com/FDNMlocal.

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