A City Disbanded Its Entire Police Force After Leaked Racist Texts

A racist “joke” allegedly made by one of its cops prompted the city of Vincent, Alabama, to dissolve its police department.

The small city of Vincent, Alabama, voted to disband its entire police department after racist text messages sent by one of its police officers were made public.

A screenshot of the texts, first reported by AL.com, shows a user named “752” asking another unidentified person, “what do you call a pregnant slave?”

The person replies with question marks.

“BOGO Buy one, get one free,” 752 answers.

The small department was dissolved Thursday, just days after the city was made aware of the offensive messages. Mayor James Latimer initially suspended Chief James Srygley and Assistant Chief John Goss, on Tuesday with pay. The mayor was not immediately available for comment.

“This has torn this community apart,” Councilor Corey Abrams said during Thursday’s meeting, according to AL.com. “It doesn’t matter what color we are as long as we do right by people.”

The New York Times reported that it was Assistant Chief Goss who sent the texts.

A city spokesperson told VICE News the police department had just three officers. The city’s third officer, Lee Carden, handed in his resignation hours after the council’s vote. As of Monday morning, the department’s website is blank.

Vincent, population 1,982, is mostly white, with just 384 Black residents. It’s located 45 minutes southeast of Birmingham. The city will now rely on a neighboring sheriff’s office in Shelby County to answer emergency calls. 


Follow Trone Dowd on Twitter.


police, ALABAMA, RACISM, police misconduct

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