Deputies Indicted in Death of Killeen Native Javier Ambler
Two Williamson County deputies have been charged in connection with the death of former Killeen resident Javier Ambler, who died two years ago in a chase that was filmed by a crew from A&E's 'Live PD'.
Our partners at News 10 report that Deputies James Johnson and Zachary Camden are charged with manslaughter in connection to Ambler's death back on March 28, 2019. That night, Ambler was driving home from a poker game in Williamson County when he failed to dim the headlights of his vehicle for oncoming traffic. When a deputy attempted to stop him, Ambler refused to pull over and a 22-minute chase ensued.
Ambler's vehicle crashed just north of Downtown Austin. Deputies used stun guns on Ambler, who said he couldn't breathe and that he suffered from congestive heart failure.
Javier Ambler's death was ruled a homicide caused by excessive force. He was 40.
The entire incident was filmed by a production crew from A&E's 'Live PD' program. Almost a year after Ambler's death, the Austin American-Statesman and KVUE-TV were given a copy of police body cam footage from that night after receiving tips from frustrated investigators. When they requested A&E's footage, they were told it had been destroyed due to the nature of the contract between the program and the Williamson County Sheriff's Department. The show was cancelled in June of 2020.
KXAN-TV reports that William Chody, who was the sheriff in Williamson County at the time of Ambler's death, was charged with evidence tampering after being accused of participating in the destruction of video evidence. According to their report, Chody's department was under investigation by Texas Rangers in five other excessive force cases when he was charged in connection to the Ambler case.
Javier Ambler was the son of an Army veteran and played football at Ellison High School and Blinn College before transferring to Texas Prairie View A&M University. He is survived by two children.