A new film premiering next week will explore the days leading up to the death of Sandra Bland.
Bland found herself in jail after being yanked from her car over a dispute of a lit cigarette with Texas Trooper Brian Encina.
‘Say Her Name: The Death and Life of Sandra Bland,’ is a HBO documentary which debuts at the Tribeca Film Festival on April 24.
Bland who was originally from the Chicago area, had recently accepted a position at Texas Prairie View A & M University where she graduated from in 2009.
Three days after being pulled over, Bland was found dead in her cell. Her death was ruled a suicide which sparked protest and debates over the official reports.
Encina was found to have failed in following traffic procedures and was placed on administrative leave after the dash-cam footage was reviewed by authorities. In addition, the condition of the jail that Bland was booked into was found to not have been in line with regulations.
“The agency that regulates county jails across Texas informed the Waller County jail that it was out of compliance with minimum jail standards after investigating the death of an inmate who authorities said committed suicide there earlier this week.” (NYTimes)
Encina was also indicted on perjury charges over his reports of Bland’s traffic stop, where he wrote that Bland was removed to safely conduct the traffic investigation. These statements were later found to be false by the grand jury.
“A police dashboard-camera video of the episode shows an escalating confrontation after Ms. Bland refuses Trooper Encinia’s request to put out a cigarette. At one point, Trooper Encinia says he will forcibly remove Ms. Bland from her car and threatens her with a Taser, saying, “I will light you up.” (NYTimes)