Dash Cam Footage Proves Sandra Bland Should Never Have Been Arrested (VIDEO)

If Sandra Bland’s arrest was anything like her experience in custody, it’s not surprising that she wound up dead. We already know the jaw-dropping details. Bland, 28, was driving in Austin, Texas, and was pulled over for failure to signal a turn. She was handcuffed, arrested, thrown in jail, and inexplicably three days later found dead, reportedly having hanged herself in her cell.

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Now we have the video of the traffic stop thanks to dash cam footage from Trooper Brian Encinia: 

Pretty much says it all, right?

A belligerent cop pulls over a woman for a petty non-offense and then taunts, manhandles, bullies, and assaults her before using his authority to throw her in jail because he can’t control his temper.

“Get out of the car! I will light you up!” Encinia screams in Bland’s face. 

From there it deteriorates into an armed, white cop beating up a defenseless woman whose only apparent crime is being annoyed for getting pulled over and treated like a child over something so ridiculous.

“For failure to signal?” she asks repeatedly. “You’re doing all this for failure to signal?”

As a white woman in America I have never, and I don’t think I would ever, be treated so disrespectfully by a police officer. As we see case after case after case of police brutality against black Americans played out in the media, white people just don’t get to pretend that we’re all being treated equally anymore. Enough.

Sandra Bland should have never been arrested in the first place and this video proves that. Sandra Bland had rights. Sandra Bland was a woman who should have been treated with courtesy and dignity by that police officer -- a public servant trusted to “serve and protect.” Instead, three days after this graphic and stomach-turning video was taken, this woman was dead.

The Texas Rangers and the FBI are investigating Bland’s death. Let’s hope it results in changes that protect people of color from one more instance of this brand of brutality. But any reform will come too late for Bland, who had the misfortune of crossing a cop in a bad mood and spending her final hours in a jail cell.

 

Becky Bracken is a news and views writer who serves it up with a sassy side of girl power. If you don't have anything nice to say, you should probably sit next to her. Get more at NerdieGaga.com.


Image via © Peter Marshall/Demotix/Corbis

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