AUSTIN, Texas — Today is Sandra Bland Day in Austin. The day was proclaimed in 2019 to remember Bland, whose suspicious 2015 death sparked outrage.
Bland died in a Waller County, Texas jail cell in 2015 at the age of 28, but her death is still under speculation to this day.
She was pulled over by state trooper Brian Encinia and was later arrested. She was found dead in her jail cell three days later on July 13, 2015.
Her death has led many to investigate cases of racial injustice and racial profiling. Bland's family founded the Sandra Bland Center For Racial Injustice to offer resources and advocacy for families in similar positions.
Bland's death was ruled a suicide. Later, Waller County officials would express regret at not putting Bland on suicide watch after she expressed in a questionairre form that she had attempted suicide before. She also reported she was feeling depressed at the time.
The video of Bland's encounter with Encinia, shot on Bland's cell phone, sparked up debate again in 2019 from Texas politicians Beto O'Rourke and Julian Castro during the 2020 presidential race. The two called for renewed investigations in the case.
Bland's name is often remembered when referring to victims of racial injustice and systemic racism such as Trayvon Martin, George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and many others. The Say Their Names database of victims' names exists to document and remember their stories.