Texas cops release ‘raw files’ footage of Sandra Bland being booked into jail
A Texas county released video on Tuesday of Sandra Bland arriving at Waller County Jail, as officials sought to dispel rumors circulating on social media that she was already dead by the time records show she was booked.
Bland was found hanged in a cell three days after her July 10 arrest for a minor traffic offense, an incident activists say is another example of police brutality toward minorities.
Local offices have been under cyber attack and some local officials have received death threats, Trey Duhon, the Waller County judge, said at a news conference.
They also said there were untrue rumors that Bland had died before she was booked, said Duhon, the top administrator for the county.
“This is Sandra Bland. There’s no other way around it. This video has not been altered or doctored in any way. These are the raw files,” he said.
The video, Duhon said, came from digital video recorders. It shows Bland arriving at the jail, walking to a holding area and jail employees speaking with her as she fills out a mental health form. It also shows her standing for a mug shot.
The video shows her making a phone call from jail and being arraigned by a justice of the peace.
Bland, a former Chicago-area resident, was pulled over by white Texas state trooper Brian Encinia near Prairie View, northwest of Houston, for failing to signal a lane change.
The stop escalated into a verbal altercation after Encinia asked Bland to put out a cigarette and she refused. Bland was arrested and charged with assaulting an officer, a felony. Bond was set at $5,000 in a court appearance the following day.
Bland was found hanging in her jail cell on the morning of July 13, with a plastic trash bag around her neck. An autopsy confirmed an initial finding by a medical examiner that Bland’s death was a suicide.
(Reporting by David Bailey in Minneapolis, Jon Herskovitz in Austin, Texas and Suzannah Gonzales in Chicago; Editing by Sandra Maler and Eric Beech)
Watch footage of Bland being booked, as posted online on Tuesday, below.