New video surfaces in Sandra Bland arrest prompting demands investigation be reopened

A cellphone video recorded by Sandra Bland, who died in a jail cell after she was arrested during a traffic stop in 2015, surfaced Monday, prompting calls for her case to be reinvestigated. 

The cell phone video, uncovered by local ABC affiliate WFAA in Dallas, shows Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) officer Brian Encinia demanding that Bland "get out of the car" during a traffic stop. In the altercation, Encinia pointed his stun gun at Bland and said "I will light you up" while she recorded, the video shows. 

Bland's family did not see the video until WFAA showed it to them.  


“Open up the case, period,” said Bland’s sister Shante Needham after she saw the footage. 

“We also know they have an extremely, extremely good cover-up system,” she added. 

She and other family members said they believe the video was purposefully withheld from their attorneys during a civil trial, but DPS denied this allegation. 

"The premise that the video was not produced as a part of the discovery process is wrong,” DPS told the TV station in a statement. “A hard drive containing copies of 820 Gigabytes of data compiled by DPS from its investigation, including the dashcam videos, jail video footage and data from Sandra Bland’s cell phone, was part of discovery.” 

Bland died after eventually being arrested in the altercation and her death was ruled a suicide. After the arrest, Encinia told investigators that he believed his "safety was in jeopardy at more than one time.”

He was fired and charged with perjury after the incident, but the perjury charges were dropped in 2017. 

Bland's family settled a wrongful death lawsuit against Waller County and Texas DPS for $1.9 million in 2016.