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Sandra Bland's Death Ruled Suicide By Hanging

July 23, 2015  | 

The cause of Sandra Bland's death was hanging; the manner of death was suicide, a prosecutor told reporters, citing preliminary autopsy results, reports CNN.

Warren Diepraam, a Waller County, Texas, prosecutor, provided new details Thursday to support those findings.

Bland -- a woman whose arrest and, days later, death in custody stirred anger nationwide -- did not have injuries on her hands. Defensive injuries there are typical, though not always found, in cases of violent homicide, Diepraam said.

"There were no bite marks or other injuries on her face, on her lips, on her tongue, which would be consistent with a violent struggle," he said.

If there had been a violent struggle, the prosecutor said, examiners would most likely not expect to see a uniform and consistent mark around Bland's neck -- which is what they, in fact, observed. They also did not observe damage to her trachea and esophagus, which they might expect to see if there had been a violent struggle, he said.

She did have approximately 30 "cut marks," on her left wrist, according to Diepraam, which were in a state of healing. Bland also had lacerations or abrasions on her wrists, which are consistent with being handcuffed and struggling, he said.

Additionally, she had scabs on her back, on the right side of her shoulder blade, which could indicate that someone applied force there, or that she applied force against an object, Diepraam said. He told reporters Bland had marijuana in her system at the time of her death.

Comments (7)

Displaying 1 - 7 of 7

westcoastleo @ 7/23/2015 4:43 PM

Let us see? She got arrested after resisting the officers commands to put the cigarette out? She struggled and resisted the arrest when told to exit the car? She was driving while under the influence of the marijuana that she injested? She got booked and went to jail? She had prior cut marks from attempted suicide? She hung herself in the jail cell? She was black? Well,, with all that said,,,It must be the cops fault...

code4onmars @ 7/23/2015 6:18 PM

No one really expects "the mob" to accept the autopsy's findings and ruling, do they? Certain segments of our society never let facts or the truth stand in the way of a "cause", or a protest, or even full blown riots...And certain media outlets aid & abet "the mob" by not allowing facts & truth to stand in the way of any story that might get them higher ratings. All of this is done at the expense of law abiding citizens, law enforcement officers, & the criminal justice system....Its despicable, and that is a fact.

Tone @ 7/23/2015 9:42 PM

Well Westcoastleo that's putting it blunt don't you think? Let's say all that did happen, does that still excuse the misconduct officers involve themselves in? Oddly enough i find it just as strange that a lot of the alleged incident happened off camera. You would think with all the police accusations spreading around, the officer would have enough sense to at least stay in view of his police camera. So ultimately its his word against hers. It's no secret to our current findings that there happens to be some bad apples in the bunch, speaking of LE, but when it comes to holding one of us accountable we seem to turn the other way and ignore our misconduct. Sometimes civilians are right about us! All this nonsense could've been avoided. And she was pulled over for what again? So a trained officer didn't see any other way in handling this situation? Whether she is black or white Westcoast isn't nearly the point..not sure what you're trying to imply there....

Phil @ 7/24/2015 7:06 AM

This is about proper procedure. Did the stop merit an arrest. Would calm had prevailed over a person that is irate. Was her moving from the fast lane to the slow lane without a turn signal cause the officer to cite her when it looked to me that she was getting out of the officers way. On several occasions, I've looked in my rear view mirror, saw an officer coming in my lane, (without emergency equipment on) get out of their way without using my turn signal and watched them pass. I have never been stopped. I believe that the prosecutors officer is correct on his assessment. Don't believe westcostleo that all African Americans believe that we are just waiting to blame the police. Because we don't. Being associated with law enforcement for over 30 years, you learn when an officers uses common sense and when he doesn't.

Eastcoastleo @ 7/24/2015 9:13 AM

I'm not sure what westcoastleo is referring to either. When seeking truth we sometimes discover unsettling information about members of our own groups... so be open to truth seeking, not finger pointing. As member of any group (LEO's, blacks, whites, democrats or republican) there will be people who do bad or improper things. "the mob" as they are referred to by code4onmars are the people we serve. Yes, what they think about the job we do IS important. Their perception is their reality. They are law abiding and law breakers depending on the situation...and when we take our uniforms the end of the shift...on our days off and at retirement...we are them. Let's take situations like this one as law enforcement officers, who's duty it is to serve the public, and pick it apart and find out what could have been done better. What tactics, training or procedures would have impacted this situation for a better outcome. As a LEO, leader and trainer those are the things I focus on

Tone @ 7/24/2015 10:16 PM

Eastcoastleo & Phil you two were absolutely correct. I saw that video from every angle and all I kept thinking about was how that lady should've been just been giving a warning & sent on her way. She became irate when the officer's demeanor changed. If you pull me over, I have a right to know why? If you're arresting me, I have a right to know why? They played back this officers conversation with his chief and what he actually said..He totally contradicted himself in his original statement of the events. You see we can't steal the cookie out the cookie jar & think we'll never get caught! In the video Ms. Bland was handcuffed, so then off camera we hear all this chaos and aggression from the officer. Why? I've witnessed less irate suspects on camera get kicked in the face just for talking back to the officer. Ms. Bland should've calmed down & let this man do his job, but doing his job isn't to be abusive & unprofessional & on top of that lie...Now she's dead....Why?

code4onmars @ 7/25/2015 3:02 AM

Thankfully there are the "station mice" & drones aka paper shufflers or non-essentials who will always be there to remind the worker bees who they are supposed to protect and serve. When I end my shift...when I take my uniform off...when I retire....I do NOT throw rocks at the police, I do NOT shoot at the police...I do NOT curse and threaten the police...I do NOT set fire to police cars...I do NOT tell lies about police conduct...I do NOT loot businesses...I do NOT hurt innocent people...No thank you Eastcoastleo, in uniform or off-duty or retired, I am NOT, nor will I ever be, one of "them". In fact, 99% of "them" don't pay any taxes at all so "them" can't even claim they pay my salary.

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