Brian Encinia

Texas state Trooper Brian Encinia, the man who arrested Sandra Bland last summer three days prior to her death, was charged with perjury by a Waller County grand jury on Wednesday morning.

ABC13 Houston is reporting that, although the grand jury opted not to charge the Waller County Sheriff’s office or jailers with anything involved in Bland’s death, the jury believes Encinia himself allegedly lied about the way in which he removed Bland from her car during a routine traffic stop.

Sandra Bland was arrested last July for an “improper lane change” and held on $500 bail; she remained in jail for three days because she couldn’t afford to pay it. She was found dead hanging in her cell on July 13th and, after investigation, her death was ruled a suicide. The circumstances surrounding both Sandra Bland’s death and arrest prompted a social network movement in Bland’s memory, “#RememberSandraBland,” and also inspired a number of public protest and outcries for someone, anyone, in Waller County to be held accountable and for answers to be provided.

Encinia, who is white, has been on paid desk duty in the time since he first arrested Bland, following video and audio evidence that suggested the means Encinia used to take Bland into custody, was excessive and unprofessional. His perjury charge comes with a maximum penalty of one year in jail and a $4,000 fine. Additionally, Trooper Encinia currently faces a wrongful death suit being brought by Bland’s family.

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The D&aD Team's resident R&B connoisseur, Batman fanatic, and author in progress, forever in search of the elusive Green Light like a Black Jay Gatsby. Bradford has also contributed to the former Chan-Lo.com, BroJackson.com, EBONY.com, ThisisRNB.com, and HoustonStyle Magazine.