Lawmakers of a small town in Alabama voted to disband its entire police department after officers shared racist text messages, reports NBC News.

The City Council of Vincent voted unanimously “to begin the process of ending city police services and contracting with the Shelby County Sheriff's Office.” The council represents around 2,000 people about 35 miles east of Birmingham. 

"I have thought long and hard about this. It's not a decision that I have come to very easily," Mayor James Latimer said at the council meeting Thursday, just before voting to terminate the chief and assistant chief and end the town's police department.

"As all of you know, I've always wanted us to have the best police department possible. I think in light of recent events, it's no longer possible, at least in this moment, for us to continue services of the police department,” he added.”

Shelby County Sheriff John Samaniego said he endorsed the move in a statement Friday.

"The Shelby County Sheriff’s Office was recently notified by the Vincent City Council and Mayor regarding the recent allegations of misconduct within the Vincent Police Department and we equally condemn these actions," Samanigeo’s statement read. "Sheriff John Samaniego stands with the City of Vincent in providing emergency law enforcement related services for the citizens during this time."

Latimer, who works as a police officer in another city, said that he informed Police Chief James Srygley and Assistant Chief John Goss of the council’s decision. 

"I know the community is hurting right now," Latimer said. "I appreciate their patience and their understanding as we go through the process of trying to recover from this. It is a stressful time for all of us. It's a heartbreaking thing."

Kenneth Dukes, president of the Shelby County branch of the NAACP, noted that he nor the Black community was not surprised by the discovery of the racist text messages. He credited public pressure for the council's decisive action.

"This has happened before; they've had this kind of attitude and conduct that's been displayed before (by police)," Dukes said. "A lot of citizens were just fed up and came together in strong numbers."