The Fifth Column News
Y’all remember Sandra Bland? The black woman stopped for a traffic violation and then was arrested and was later found hanged in her jail cell? And, of course, nothing happened with that case; no arrests for the police; no questions about her treatment in jail; no reason why she would have killed herself.
Well, this week Waller County grand jurors have indicted Department of Public Safety [DPS] trooper Brian Encinia on a single charge of perjury because they believe he lied about his actions during the arrest of Sandra Bland.
The charge against Encinia stems from his own statement at the time of Bland’s arrest on July 10 about why he felt the need to yank her out of the car and throw her to the ground.
In a dashcam video of the traffic stop, Encinia can be seen opening Bland’s driver’s side door and reaching in for her. When she refuses to come out and he threatens to use a Taser on her.
But in his written report Encinia simply says:
“I had Bland exit the vehicle to further conduct a safe traffic investigation.”
The Bland family attorney, Cannon Lambert, says his clients don’t understand why it took six months to reach the indictment, though I have three reasons:
She was Black.
This was a white police officer.
It happened in Texas.
As a result of the indictment — the only one issued by the grand jury in the Bland case — a warrant was issued for Encinia’s arrest. If convicted, Brian Encinia could face up to a year in jail and a $4,000 fine. In addition to the indictment, Brian Encinia has been fired from DPS.
For, without Brian Encinia’s overzealous and violent treatment of Sandra Bland, she might still be alive today.
And that’s a crime.