Georgia police officer Greg Abbott is under investigation after video caught him assuring a terrified white woman that police “only kill black people” during a traffic stop.
“Remember, we only kill black people,” the Cobb County police officer can be heard saying on the video. “We only kill black people, right?”
According to Cobb County police Chief Mike Register, the department has viewed the video and have placed Abbot on administrative leave pending the outcome of an internal investigation.
Register said the woman was hesitant to put her hands down to pick up a cellphone because she didn’t want to get shot.
Abbott’s attorney Lance LoRusso issued the following statement:
“Lt. Greg Abbott is a highly respected 28-year veteran of the Cobb County Police Department. He is cooperating with the department’s internal investigation and will continue to do so. His comments must be observed in their totality to understand their context. He was attempting to de-escalate a situation involving an uncooperative passenger. In context, his comments were clearly aimed at attempting to gain compliance by using the passenger’s own statements and reasoning to avoid making an arrest.”
Register said Abbott had been a good officer and he wasn’t aware of any racial bias complaints. The department has since instituted a faith forum, precinct discussion groups, training changes, and more.
“We’re not making excuses. We’re meeting this head-on and we’re going to deal with it,” Register said. “We are going to keep going forward to make sure we, as a police department, service the community in a most professional way — all segments of the community.”