A Georgia police chief and a patrolman were both forced to hand in their badges after newly released bodycam footage captured the two men defending slavery while discounting its modern impacts and using racial slurs throughout the recorded conversation.
As WRBL reported, Gene Allmond, Hamilton Chief of Police in Hamilton, Georgia, resigned last week following backlash from the video. In addition, Patrolman John Brooks was terminated.
As the June 2020 video illustrated, Allmond and Brooks were chatting before a Black Lives Matter protest began—one of countless demonstrations throughout the summer of 2020. Protesters called for greater measures of accountability and an end to violent, racist police policies in cities across the United States.
In the recorded portion of their conversation, Allmond and Brooks first discussed how they plan to control crowds without escalating or getting themselves into trouble.
Later on, they moved on to the topic of slavery.
Allmond shared his thoughts.
"F'k… Protests, son of a bitch what is the matter with these f'king people? I don't own no slaves. My folks didn't own no slaves…"
"You know what are we talking about…? 200 f'king years ago?"
And later on, Allmond expanded.
"Well you know what now? This, I don't know if this has any merit, back in the slave times, but there was a lot them mistreated. I don't have any doubt about that."
"But for the most part, it seems to me like, they furnished them a house to live in, they furnished 'em clothes to put on their back, they furnished 'em food to put on their table, and all they had to do was f'kin' work."
Brooks chimed in.
"And now, we give them all those things and they don't have to work."
WRBL explained the video was only recently discovered when a city employee checked the body camera to confirm it was functional. It was then the employee saw the footage and sent it up the chain.
It didn't take long for Hamilton Mayor Julie Brown and the city council to become involved.
Mayor Brown explained the swift decision to oust both officers.
"We wanted them off the force because we don't want that kind of ugliness here in Hamilton."
"Race, I don't think has been an issue here. At least it hasn't been in the 37 years I've been here, and we just didn't want that, especially now in this day and age we want more unity."
"The whole country needs more unity, we need to heal, so we didn't want anything stopping that."
People who saw the story on Facebook were appalled.
Cecilia Marie Austin/Facebook
Thankfully, the bodycam was found and accomplished exactly what it was made to. One of the biggest asks of law enforcement is accountability.
This was a step in that direction.