A white school superintendent in Georgia was placed on leave after an audio recording revealed he allegedly used racial slurs and threatened to kill Black workers at a construction site.
In a racial discrimination lawsuit filed by a former employee for Buford City Schools, Superintendent Geye Hamby is accused of using the n-word multiple times when regarding Black temp workers, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.
“F**k that n****r,” the person identified as Hamby, 49, said on the recording according to the lawsuit.
“I’d kill the god****d... shoot that motherf****r if they let me ... Alright. Well check out what’s going on with all the n*****s down there.”
Hamby, who has declined to comment on the allegations, also called construction workers “deadbeat n****rs,” according to the lawsuit filed by plaintiff Mary Ingram, 66.
“Send us a park-quality person. Don't send us a deadbeat n****r from a temp service. S**t, we can find you some kids around here that want a damn job,” Hamby said in the recording.
“We've got young kids right here that put in the work. They can do more than the damn deadbeat n*****s – but I mean it's too late on this damn job. Find out why in the hell we still have them. Bye.”
Ingram worked for the district for 18 years before getting fired last year.
The lawsuit doesn’t indicate exactly when Hamby allegedly made the comments or who was on the other end of the line.
Ingram’s attorney, Ed Buckley, declined to specify how he obtained the recordings or additional details pertaining to them, aside to say he’s certain Hamby is the person heard on the recordings.
Ingram first began having issues with Hamby when she asked him why the color gold — which stood for the city’s Black school district prior to integration in 1969 — wasn’t included in the district’s logo. She decided to start a petition to add the color and brought it up to the school board in 2014.
“I was afraid we were about to lose our heritage,” Ingram told the Journal-Constitution. “I wanted them to know it was important to the community.”
Weeks later, Hamby called Ingram into a meeting and demanded she tell him what she planned on saying at a future school board and city commission meeting regarding the gold color inclusion.
When she refused and said that would infringe on her First Amendment rights, Ingram started receiving negative performance reviews.
Ingram ultimately was fired in June 2017 for “being disrespectful, argumentative and unfriendly” as well as not being a “good fit” in a school environment.
“I couldn’t move,” Ingram told the Journal-Constitution. “I just froze. My legs felt weak … Before this happened, I looked forward every morning to getting up and going to work to do things for the children.”
Ingram didn’t file her lawsuit until after hearing the audio recordings, she told the newspaper. Hamby said Ingram’s lawsuit is a “personnel and legal matter pertaining to a disgruntled employee.”
An attorney for the school board also questioned the veracity of the “purported” recordings.
“Our investigation continues into this matter, but we are hamstrung in that the plaintiff has failed or refused to produce the original recording for testing or provide any information concerning the background or foundation of the recording,” attorney Walt Britt told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
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