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Former Williamson County, Texas, deputies James Johnson (L) and Zachary Camden. Photo: Travis County Jail

A Texas grand jury has indicted two former sheriff's deputies from Williamson County, Texas, on second-degree manslaughter charges over the death in custody of Javier Ambler, a 40-year-old Black man.

The big picture: Former Williamson County deputies Zachary Camden and James Johnson were with a crew from the since-canceled A&E reality TV show "Live PD" when they pursued the father of two on March 28, 2019.

A tweet previously embedded here has been deleted or was tweeted from an account that has been suspended or deleted.
  • Officials have said they stopped him for failing to dim his SUV's headlights to oncoming traffic before pursuing him for over 20 minutes.
  • Austin Police Department body camera footage shows officers using Tasers on him several times as Ambler told them he had "congestive heart failure" and "can't breathe."

For the record: Camden and Johnson posted bail, which was set at $150,000 each following Monday's indictment, according to the Travis County District Attorney's Office.

  • Two other men have been arrested in connection with the incident — Robert Chody who faces an evidence tampering charge over the alleged destruction of recordings, and Jason Nassour, a Williamson County assistant attorney who's also been charged with evidence tampering, the New York Times notes.

What they're saying: "With these indictments, we have taken another critical step towards justice for the Ambler family and for our community," said District Attorney José Garza in a statement.

  • "While we can never take away the pain of the Ambler family, the grand jury has sent a clear message that no one is above the law."

The accused men's attorneys said in a statement Tuesday that Ambler had several collisions during the pursuit and he resisted arrest. They called the indictments a "political talking point."

  • They deny Ambler was stopped for failing to dim his headlights and say instead that he was pulled over for "felony offense of evading arrest in a vehicle."
  • "Mr. Ambler's physical exertion in resisting the three officers it took to get him into handcuffs no doubt contributed to his medical emergency, but Mr. Johnson and Mr. Camden are neither morally nor legally responsible for his death," the statement said.

Of note: The presence of the TV crew has raised ethical concerns about television shows partnering with law enforcement and a proposed bill, the Javier Ambler Law, which is before the Texas legislature, seeks to ban law the practice.

Go deeper

Mark Meadows will stop cooperating with Jan. 6 panel, attorney says

Photo: Chris Kleponis/Polaris/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows will no longer cooperate with the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection, his attorney told Fox News Tuesday.

Why it matters: Meadows, who failed to appear before the panel last month, is believed to have insight into former President Trump's role in efforts to stop the certification of President Biden's election win.

Updated 4 hours ago - Economy & Business

The billionaire balloon

Data: World Inequality Report 2022; Chart: Axios Visuals

The super-rich are getting stupid rich: New data out today shows the share of global wealth held by the richest slice of humanity swelled by almost a full percentage point during the pandemic.

Driving the news: The top 0.01% of individuals now hold about 11% of the world's wealth, compared to just over 10% in 2020, according to the "World Inequality Report 2022," written by Lucas Chancel, Thomas Piketty, Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman.

Tina Reed, author of Vitals
4 hours ago - Health

Omicron gives a shot to boosters

Expand chart
Data: CDC; Chart: Will Chase/Axios

Vaccination rates have ticked higher since the discovery of the Omicron variant, CDC data shows.

By the numbers: The seven-day average for vaccinations in the U.S. reached about 1.8 million on Monday, up from an average of about 1.3 million a month ago.