Cellphone video recorded by Sandra Bland shows for the first time her perspective as a state trooper draws his stun gun and points it at close range while ordering her out of the car after she was arrested during a traffic stop, was made public Monday night.
The clip, which aired on the Dallas station WFAA, was obtained with the help of the Investigative Network, a nonprofit news organization.
Bland’s death and dashcam videos showing Trooper Brian Encinia trying to pull her out of her car during the stop heightened tensions around police treatment of black people.
In the 39-second video that aired Monday, Bland asks Encinia, “Why am I being apprehended?” as she tries to direct her phone’s camera at him. By the time she does get the camera to focus on him, Encinia is pointing a stun gun at her.
“Get out of the car. I will light you up,” Encinia says.
“Wow, wow, wow. You’re doing all this for a failure to signal?” Bland asks.
Encinia then orders Bland to get off her phone, to which she answers: “I’m not on the phone. I have a right to record. This is my property.” The video ends seconds later.
Bland’s sister, Sharon Cooper, said that after watching the tape, it was clear to her that the video revealed contradictions between what transpired and the police report.
“What it does, without a shadow of a doubt, validate is that Brian Encinida’s behavior in the field, his lack of judgment and his inability to really de-escalate a situation was what was the impetus behind why she was detained and ultimately why she died in police custody,” Cooper told NBC News.
Cannon Lambert, who represented Bland’s family in lawsuits against the state and county jail that were settled for almost $2 million in total, told The Associated Press he hadn’t seen the clip until recently.
Bland’s family and state authorities disagree about whether the video, shot by Bland, 28, on her cellphone during the traffic stop, was available during litigation.
Sandra Bland was one of six African-American female who died in police custody, nationwide in the month of July 2015., the sixth was Raynette Turner of Mount Vernon, who died in an MVPD holding cell July 27, 2015.