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‘We Only Shoot Black People,’ Cobb Officer Says During Traffic Stop

Cobb County Police Chief Mike Register says Lt. Greg Abbott will remain on administrative duty pending an investigation.
Cobb County Police Chief Mike Register says Lt. Greg Abbott will remain on administrative duty pending an investigation.
Credit JASON GETZ / Associated Press File
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A police lieutenant in Georgia has been moved to administrative duty after being heard on video during a traffic stop saying “we only kill black people.”

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News outlets report dash-cam video, obtained by Channel 2 Action News, from July 2016 shows a white female driver telling Cobb County police Lt. Greg Abbott she was scared to move her hands in order to get her cellphone. Abbott, who also is white, interrupts her and says, “But you’re not black. Remember, we only kill black people.”

“No matter what the context, statements like these are unacceptable and are not indicative of the type of culture we are trying to facilitate here in the police department, as well as within the county,” police Chief Mike Register said in an emailed statement.

Abbott, who has been an officer in Cobb County for more than 20 years, will remain on administrative duty pending an investigation, the chief said.

Abbott’s attorney, Lance LoRusso, said in a statement Abbott is cooperating with the investigation, and that his comments were meant to “de-escalate a situation involving an uncooperative passenger.”

Editor’s note: A previous version of this story reported that the officer said “We only shoot black people” instead of the correct “We only kill black people.” The story has been updated to reflect the correct quote.