Charge Dropped Against Trooper That Arrested Sandra Bland Who Died in Texas Jail

A charge has been dropped against the only official to face a criminal indictment related to the arrest of Sandra Bland, a black woman who was found hanged in her Texas jail cell three days after her arrest and whose name became a rallying cry in protests against racial bias in policing.

Former State Trooper Brian Encinia, who pulled Bland over on July 10, 2015, in Prairie View, Texas, for failing to use a turn signal, no longer faces a perjury charge for making a false statement about the arrest, according to papers filed Wednesday at the Waller County Courthouse in Hempstead, northwest of Houston.

The dismissal of the charge comes more than a year after a grand jury said Encinia lied when he wrote in an affidavit justifying the arrest that he removed Bland from her car to conduct a safer traffic investigation.

Family members and civil rights officials had protested that assertion, pointing to a viral dash cam video of an escalating confrontation with Bland where the officer said he would “yank” her out of the vehicle, threatened to use a stun gun and said he would “light you up” as she refused to put out a cigarette and step out.

Three days after her arrest, Bland, 28, who could not make a $5,000 bond, was found dead in her jail cell. The death was ruled a suicide as protests grew over her arrest — family representatives said it was a needless arrest and death for a routine traffic violation — and activists aired criticism of the jail and about the circumstances of her death. They included pointing out that jail officials had insight into Bland’s mental health history, including a suicide attempt the year before her arrest, but did not place her on suicide watch or check her cell often enough.

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Filming Cops
Filming Cops 2719 posts

Filming Cops was started in 2010 as a conglomerative blogging service documenting police abuse. The aim isn’t to demonize the natural concept of security provision as such, but to highlight specific cases of State-monopolized police brutality that are otherwise ignored by traditional media outlets.

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  • DB Murphy

    Seems Texas is soft on crime, otherwise they would have prosecuted the perjury charge.

  • Lana

    So cops can lie but the victims get jailed for it ? Sick way for the law to work !