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Roland Martin talks to former Dallas County Prosecutor Yodit Tewolde, about the latest in the case of Sandra Bland, the Illinois woman who was found dead in a Texas jail after being arrested for a traffic violation.

New dashcam video shows that the state trooper, now identified as Brian Encinia, saw Bland pulling out of a parking lot minutes after he gave another driver a ticket. The trooper U-turned and sped up to pull behind her and she pulled to the side. Watch above for the full dashcam video. The confrontation starts at 6:30 in the video.

“Everything from after the fact of him requesting her to get out of that vehicle was completely inappropriate. You have the first amendment right to record an officer as long as you’re not interfering,” says Tewolde. “It isn’t in the law per se, but you need probable cause. You need to believe that someone is committing a crime. Smoking a cigarette is not committing a crime. Having an attitude is not committing a crime,” says Tewolde.

Bland has the First Amendment right to record a police office, says Tewolde. But she does say that it may not be the best idea to do so if  your phone is in the officer’s face or if you are interfering with the officer’s duty. That goes for the bystander video as well – a bystander has a right to tape an arrest.

Tewolde says there was little attempt by the officer to deescalate the situation. The officer has been placed on administrative leave and his supervisors have said that he violated the department’s “courtesy” policy.

We know what happened in the arrest, but still don’t know what happened in the jail, which is where Bland died. At this point, although initial accounts determined the death as a suicide reports from an independent autopsy are pending and the investigation is currently being considered a murder investigation.

Click the link above to hear the entire interview.

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10 thoughts on “‘It’s A Murder Investigation Now’ – Yodit Tewolde, Former Dallas Prosecutor on Sandra Bland [VIDEO]

  1. Unfortunately her family or friends didn’t come tho her rescue. Then they have this clampet Alexandria Pyle that was in the cell next to hers implying that “I know for a fact that I don’t think that the guards did anything to her.” The fact that she lives in Waller Co. says a lot. If there were three woman in her cell why didn’t they put Sandra in there with them instead of leaving her alone. No one in unfamiliar territory wants to be alone. Whoever LaVaughn Mosley is, he or she should feel really bad from not coming to her rescue. $500.00 really????? If you look at the video of Alexandria Pyle you can tell she’s lying, she’s making up stuff as she goes. The fact that she states that she believes Sandra committed suicide is all the media and the Waller Co. Sheriffs department want to hear. This is a shame before God. I am not a Muslam but Malcom X said it best, “They have traded in their sheets for uniforms.

  2. With a trashbag! Then when they showed her cell there was still a bag in the trashcan but her things were still on the table. They said they had removed all trash bags from the cells. Don’t forget her feet was on the floor.

  3. MARLON BANKHEAD on said:

    I am so tired of the docile black person! Stop turning the other damn cheek and let’s start to make some real moves. The only way to be heard is to stop being willing participants to this wicked system of things. Its high time we start making noise that can’t be ignored. Its time we band together and get our communities back! NO MORE sitting on our hands while we wait for some magical being to step in and save the day! If we keep waiting, this will no longer be our fight, but the fight of our children’s children, and there is NO WAY I’m leaving my kids to suffer in this mess.

    • SeekingPeace on said:

      Marlon, are you suggesting riots in the streets. Are you suggesting the black minority to take up guns and defend…..what? For what? For whom? Unpack that thought process and let me know where it ends. More people dying. More hate. More fighting. For what? To gain what? There is another option and it is the opposite of anger….it’s peace. Love your neighbor as you love yourself. Call it turn the other cheek – whatever you wish. But you get to go home. Sandra Bland didn’t. She was right…and she is dead.

      • Rchelle on said:

        I agree Seeking peace. It is ridiculous to believe that we need to star acting like the animals they already accuse us of being. There is an agenda….they want us out there rioting and being menaces, because then they think they can swoop in and put us all on lock d own, and not only will we suffer, but they will implement new, wicked laws that will harm our children and their children. We need Godly, positive leaders…time for us to step up, and no foolishness. Our lives and our children’s lives are at stake. Hate does not win, Love did and Love does.

    • I’ve been saying this all along but to win a war we need organization, unity and strong leaders. This is the only way. They know all blacks do is preach, protest and riot. It’s time to stop this and move forward and fight fire with fire. It going to happen because it can’t be any other way but right now they’re killing us everyday blatantly and laughing at us. They need to feel pain like the families hurting. It’s time to organize.

  4. It’s so disturbing that police arrest citizens for being rude or less than cooperative. Neither is a crime. Police are out of control. We shouldn’t have to be trained on how to deal with police if confronted by them. The burden is on them to behave professionally and keep things from escalating. The military enjoys authority over civilians when called in while police protect and serve. These lines have become blurred and police now exercise and enjoy authority that’s not to be challenged in our communities. Just pay attention to their demeanor and aggressive behavior when dealing with civilians.

  5. SeekingPeace on said:

    Here’s what we all know for sure. Unfortunately, and tragically, Sandra Bland is dead. Anything beyond that, none of us know. Calling Brian Encinia bad words or saying it was her own fault, none of that helps or furthers the goal of peace and love – which is what we all seek. Without pouring anymore gas on this already smoldering situation – if either one of them could take back their actions, I’m sure they would. I have been in a traffic situation where I was stopped for, what I felt at the time, was a bogus stop. I talked a lot of trash, and I then found out I was driving on a suspended license and I was taken to jail. That being said, this could have been me – but for the grace of God. The judge in my case made me write a letter of apology to the arresting officer. I did – and you know what, doing that really humanized the police officer for me. But unlike Sandra Bland, I was given that chance. We don’t know what happened to Sandra Bland. We all have our suspicions, but none of us know. What I can say for me is that, if I am not adding to the conversation in a way that creates peace – I truly am a part of the problem. Don’t you think this officer would have done things differently in hindsight. Don’t you think he is going through his own version of hell about this. He made mistakes, he sure did – but so did she. She expected her knowledge of her rights and her righteous indignation to work on her behalf – it backfired. She was technically right….DEAD RIGHT.

    So where do we go from here. People will start a fund for him and there will be more division. There will be marches for her….and more division. This is not going to end well unless both sides begin to seek peace and love one another. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. It’s very simple and very basic but so many really don’t practice it. A kind answer turns away wrath. Be the first one to say “I’m sorry” or “I understand”, or “you know what, I respect your point of view”. Show compassion to yourself and to others. Really place yourself in someone else’s shoes. Sometimes, things are not the way you think just because you have created a story about it in your head, you could actually be wrong. Sometimes you just need to be silent. None of us are in a position to judge him or her.

    The Peace Prayer
    (St. Francis of Assisi)
    Lord, make me an instrument of Thy peace;
    Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
    Where there is injury, pardon;
    Where there is error, the truth;
    Where there is doubt, the faith;
    Where there is despair, hope;
    Where there is darkness, light;
    And where there is sadness, joy.
    O Divine Master,
    Grant that I may not so much seek
    To be consoled, as to console;
    To be understood, as to understand;
    To be loved as to love.
    For it is in giving that we receive;
    It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
    And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen.

  6. Linda on said:

    MURDER it is–a person cannot hoist themselves up to hang themselves. You can stand on a chair and do it. However, that is not what happened to Ms. Bland.

    She was killed in her jail cell because she was outspoken and that POS PIG was a racist.

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