Mother of black woman found dead in a Texas jail cell rails against injustice

The mother of a black woman found dead in a Texas jail cell after a traffic stop in July said a perjury charge against the white state trooper who pulled her over is “not justice”.

An emotional Geneva Reed-Veal told reporters in Chicago that the trooper should have been charged with battery and false arrest, adding she has no confidence in the investigation and justice process.

“I’m angry, absolutely,” she said of the misdemeanor perjury charge, which carries a maximum of one year in jail and a $4,000 fine (€3,680).

She added: “That’s not justice for me.”

Sandra Bland, 28, was stopped in July for an improper lane change.

The stop quickly escalated into a shouting match and a physical confrontation with the Trooper threatening to use a stun gun.

Bland was arrested on suspicion of assaulting the trooper.

Authorities say Bland hanged herself in her jail cell three days later.

Trooper Brian Encinia was indicted by a grand jury in Texas on allegations that he lied when he claimed in an affidavit that Bland was “combative and uncooperative” after he pulled her over during the traffic stop and ordered her out of her car.

The grand jury identified that affidavit in charging Encinia with perjury, special prosecutor Shawn McDonald said.

Hours after the indictment, the Texas Department of Public Safety said it would “begin termination proceedings” against Encinia, who has been on paid desk duty since Bland was found dead in her cell.

Encinia was not immediately taken into custody, and an arraignment date has not yet been announced.


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