The Georgia cop who told a white woman they only shoot black people resigned from his post late Thursday before the police chief could fire him.
Lt. Greg Abbott, a Cobb County police officer, quit his job in an email sent to officials as Police Chief Mike Register was deciding to remove him from his post, Commission Chairman Mike Boyce told the Atlanta Journal Constitution.
“I have known Lt. (Greg) Abbott for years and perceived him as honorable, but he’s made a mistake. I don’t know what is in his heart, but I know what came out of his mouth. We recommend that he be terminated and we are moving forward on that,” Register said at a news conference Thursday while Abbot was sending out an email about his resignation.
Abbot had been placed on administrative desk duty pending an investigation into 2016 body camera footage that had been unearthed by a public records request. The body camera footage showed Abbott pulling over a white woman for a driving under the influence check.
During the stop, the woman expressed fear over reaching for her cellphone, citing concerns about recent videos that showed shootings during police stops.
“But you’re not black. Remember, we only shoot black people,” Abbott told the woman. “Yeah. We only kill black people, right? All the videos you’ve seen, have you seen the black people get killed?”
A lawyer for Abbott said his comments were taken out of context. Abbott was trying to defuse an already tense situation, the lawyer argued.
“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,” Lance LoRusso said in a statement.
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