Lt. Greg Abbott, the Georgia police officer caught on dashcam footage during a traffic stop last year saying “we only kill black people,” is out of a job. Cobb County police Chief Mike Register announced the decision at a news conference Thursday afternoon.
“The statements were inexcusable and inappropriate,” Register said. “I don’t know what’s in [Abbott’s] heart, but I certainly know what came out of his mouth.”
“I wish Lt. Abbott well. But I think that was very inappropriate for any police officer to say that,” Register added.
Abbott spent 27 years on the force. In the dashcam footage, obtained by Georgia ABC affiliate WSB-TV, Abbott can be seen on the passenger side of a vehicle pulled over in a DUI stop. A woman in the car is heard saying she doesn’t want to move her hands because “I’ve just seen way too many videos of cops” — and Abbott cuts her off.
“But you’re not black,” he says. “Remember, we only kill black people. Yeah, we only kill black people, right? All the videos you’ve seen, have you seen black people get killed? You have.”
Lance LaRusso, Abbott’s attorney, told WSB that the officer had been “cooperating with the department’s internal investigation… His comments must be observed in their totality to understand their context.”
After the station posted the video, it garnered immediate attention from people who say it illustrates that some officers view killings of black people as a joke.
“Police officer tells woman ‘we only kill black people’ yet everyone is upset about Kaepernick kneeling,” one person tweeted.
“Have you heard the audio of the cobb county cop saying we only kill black people?? They come straight out and tell you black lives are jokes,” another said.