Unseen Body Cam Footage Revealed in Trial of Former Williamson County Deputies in Javier Ambler’s Death

WILLIAMSON COUNTY, Texas – The trial of two former Williamson County deputies charged with manslaughter continued with the presentation of unseen body camera footage. The footage included interviews with both defendants just moments after the 2019 in-custody death of Javier Ambler. Former Deputy James Johnson’s statement, “I wasn’t trying to hurt that f******* guy,” resonated through the courtroom, capturing the essence of the trial. Assistant Chief David testified as a witness, analyzing his body camera footage from the night of the incident and the interviews he conducted with the defendants.

The body camera footage revealed Johnson expressing his frustration at Ambler’s non-compliance, saying, “He’s not doing what I’m telling him to do: Get on the ground, stop, stop, stop.” Camden, another former deputy, admitted to using force to gain compliance, stating, “I ran in, planted my knee on the back of his neck. He was still being non-compliant.” In the video, Johnson also mentioned that Ambler told him he was struggling to breathe. Ambler had previously informed the officers that he had congestive heart failure and was having difficulty breathing.

Both Johnson and Camden confessed to using a taser on Ambler in an attempt to gain control. Camden revealed that he had placed his knee on Ambler’s neck, but when attempting to handcuff him, Ambler stopped moving and became unconscious. The body camera footage also captured Assistant Chief David offering support to both former deputies following the incident.

During the trial, two cameramen from the reality show “Live PD” testified about their experience filming the incident. They discussed their positions that night and what they had captured on camera. While Moriarty, one of the cameramen, emphasized that he was just a camera man and not a police officer, he defended the deputies’ actions, stating they were consistent with what any other deputy would have done in that situation.

Judge Karen Sage brought the trial to an early conclusion as the state ran out of witnesses. However, she assured the jury that the trial was proceeding as planned. She also noted that the state had failed to provide Ambler’s arrest warrant to the court prior to the trial. The trial will continue on Friday morning.