Georgia Police Officer Caught on Video Saying ‘We Only Kill Black People’

A recently surfaced dashcam video recorded during a traffic stop made in Georgia has not only stirred up local community members but has sent chills across the nation.

In the video, Lt. Greg Abbott, an officer with the Cobb County Police Department, can be seen conversing with a motorist parked on a hard shoulder last summer. The driver can be heard expressing concern about whether her movements would be misinterpreted by Abbott as threatening. Despite being very clearly terrified, Abbott took a strange if not disturbing approach to try to defuse the situation.

After noting that she was a white woman Abbott, apparently in jest, told the driver that “you’re not black. Remember, we only shoot black people.” He goes on to reference the videos that have made it into the public eye depicting police using excessive force against black Americans.

After this recording circulated Abbott was suspended. He was then given the option to retire and chose to do so rather than face dismissal.

There are a few interesting things to be gathered from this incident. Let’s start with the obvious: Is making a “joke” worth losing a job over? In this case, yes it is.

Though Abbott may have thought he was deescalating a tense situation with humor, his choice of words were not only incredibly tasteless but also show the levity with which some law enforcement officers apparently view the matter of excessive force. People’s lives are being lost on an all too frequent basis thanks to officers operating under a fire-first policy, especially when it comes to people of color. That’s no laughing matter.

On top of that, since Abbott’s comments were presumably made sarcastically, what was he trying to imply? That a driver’s race would not necessarily preclude her from being killed? That is a very strange way to go about trying to calm someone.

Ultimately,  it is that Abbott’s “joke” – because of the implications above – only serves to further drive a wedge between law enforcement officers and the communities they serve. Many police officers and unions, such as the New York Police Department Sergeants Benevolent Association, have claimed that there is an unwarranted bias against police among the public. When officers make comments like those Abbott made, is really such a mystery as to why this is the state of things?

Another take away from this situation is the somewhat surprising outcome. In other police departments, officers who have done much more than make callous remarks on video have not faced termination.

Take Officer Timothy Loehmann of Cleveland as one example. In 2014 he killed Tamir Rice for simply brandishing a toy firearm. Despite this, Loehmann kept his job for nearly three more years before being fired – for lying on his job application, not for killing a young boy.

Then there is Jeronimo Yanez, the Minneappolis police officer who shot and killed Philando Castile last summer. Even given the nature of the shooting, Yanez was not fired; instead he was given a $48,500 pay off to voluntarily leave the force.

What message does it send when officers can kill innocent people under questionable circumstances and keep their jobs – while those who make tasteless jokes or misrepresent themselves on an application are terminated?

It is a strange ordering of priorities.

Photo Credit: PoliceActivity / YouTube.

60 comments

Jennifer H
Jennifer Habout a month ago

Poor judgement to say the least.

SEND
Elaine W
Elaine Wabout a month ago

Her husband and children could be black. HOW WOULD HE KNOW.

SEND
Cindy M. D
Cindy M. Dabout a month ago

Disgusting comment. He gives the term "officer of the law" a bad name.

SEND
heather g
heather g1 months ago

Well - At least he can't be accused of lying...

SEND
Donn M
Donn M1 months ago

His comment still makes me laugh, I can only imagine his frustration at this woman's over-reaction. Maybe not a wise thing to say given the public over-sensitivity, but not even close to a firing offense. Chills through the nation? Is the American public really that stupid?

SEND
Brian F
Brian F1 months ago

I’m sure that if someone else said that about police officers, it would be taken seriously, and the person would be charged with threatening a police officer. Police officers should be held to a higher standard, and this police officer should be in jail, charged with threatening the lives of black people. Just the other day, a crazy police officer arrested a nurse in a hospital for doing her job, and refusing to take a blood sample because the officer didn’t have a warrant, and the patient was unconscious. The nurse was right, and simply following the law as it is written. The other officers just stood around as the screaming women was arrested and taken out of the hospital. The police in America, are corrupt, and out of control, on a power trip, and have become judge jury, and executioner. America is a police state, and these phyco thugs are running wild injuring and killing people and getting away with it scott free.

SEND
Peggy B
Peggy B1 months ago

TYFS

SEND
Winn A
Winn A1 months ago

Police department throughout America have to have better psychological tests before accepting these disgusting and despicable people on their police force. There are lots of decent and effective police officers serving. We need to get the rotten ones off the force because I'm sure they make it tough for the decent police officers to do their jobs. There needs to be a wake up call to all police forces in America. Please do a better screening job. Thanks

SEND
Janis K
Janis K1 months ago

Thanks for sharing.

SEND
Marty P
Marty P1 months ago

Another Proud Moment In Trump America!

SEND