VIDEO: Previously-Unseen Sandra Bland Cell Phone Video Spurs Call To Reopen Case
Austin, TX – Family members of Sandra Bland are calling for prosecutors to re-open the case against a former state trooper after Bland’s own cell phone video of the traffic stop was released (video below).
However, the prosecutor's office already had the video and it reveals no other previously-unknown details.
The dashcam video of the incident had already been released showing everything in her cell phone video and more.
WFAA aired the video for the first time on May 7 amidst a claim from the Bland family and their attorneys claiming that the cell phone footage had previously been concealed.
The Texas Department of Public Safety released a statement after it aired that said the cell phone video had been referred to “multiple times” in its report, The New York Times reported.
WFFA was first to air the video because they were the first to submit a public records request to get it.
The video showed Bland was filming former Texas Department of Public Safety Trooper Brian Encinia when he ordered her to get out of her car during a traffic stop.
“Get out of the car, now!” Trooper Encinia demanded.
The video showed Bland disregarded the trooper’s order and instead sat in her vehicle arguing with him.
“Why am I being apprehended? You just opened my car door. You just opened my car door so you’re gonna, you’re threatening to drag me out of my own car?” Bland asked.
At that point, a visibly irritated Trooper Encinia pulled out his Taser and pointed it in the direction of Bland.
“Get out of the car!” the trooper ordered the driver multiple times.
The video showed Bland continued to smart-talk the trooper even as she began to comply and get out of her vehicle.
“And then you’re going to stun me? Wow,” she grumbled.
“I will light you up!” Trooper Encinia threatened in the video.
The video showed that Bland continued to scream at the officer as she walked away from her vehicle.
Then Trooper Encinia ordered her to put down her phone and she was arguing that she had the right to film him as the video ended.
Attorneys for the Bland family said that the cell phone video proved that former Trooper Encinia was not in fear for his life when he ordered Bland from her car, The New York Times reported.
All charges related to the arrest of Bland against the former trooper were dismissed in June of 2017.
Bland, 28, was stopped by then-Trooper Encinia for a traffic signal violation on July 10, 2015.
Her behavior during the traffic stop landed Bland, who had just moved to Texas from Illinois, in jail, according to The New York Times.
Three days later Bland was found hanging in her cell and her death was ruled a suicide.
The blowback following her death, combined with the death of Michael Brown in Ferguson one year earlier, proved to be a turning point for the Black Lives Matter movement, according to The New York Times.
Although the trooper was not responsible for Bland’s death in custody, Encinia was indicted for perjury a year after the incident because a grand jury determined that there was probable cause to believe the trooper had lied in his report about the traffic stop.
Waller County District Judge Albert McCraig dismissed the charges at the request of the prosecutors on June 28, 2017.
Encinia's lawyer, Chip Lewis, maintained that the grand jury's decision to indict was based on emotion, rather than an objective look at the evidence.
As part of an agreement for the charges being dismissed, Encinia agreed never to pursue a law enforcement career again.
Bland's family settled a lawsuit with the Texas Department of Public Safety and the Waller County Jail for $1.8 million in September of 2016, The New York Times reported.
Watch the newly released cell phone video below: