Sandra Bland


A young Black woman is arrested for a traffic violation and dead in a Texas jail cell three days later. We need answers

by Jamilah Lemieux, July 16, 2015

Sandra Bland

Another day, another Black person dead following an encounter with police. Another hashtag, another family desperately asking, "WHY?"

Twenty eight-year-old Sandra Bland was a 2008 graduate of the Prairie View A&M University in Texas. Last week, she returned to her alma mater to interview for a job in student outreach and, according to Heavy, she was scheduled to start on July 15.

But on Friday, she was stopped by Waller Country police for a minor traffic violation. She was arrested and booked for "assault on a public officer." The video of her arrest, however, seems to tell a different story. You can hear Bland asking officers why she's being handled so roughly. What isn't seen here, however, is an assault on any officer.

The Chicago Tribune, one of the first outlets to report on this case (she had connections to the Naperville area), published a curious account of the final hours of the woman's life:

"Online county jail records show that Bland was arrested Friday and released Monday on $5,000 bond.

Bland was found Monday morning by a female jailer who had gone to Bland's cell to see if she wanted some recreation time, [Waller County Sheriff Glenn] Smith said."

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