#SandraBland, One Too Many Names to Say

Sandra Bland. This name went viral over the past few days for an unfortunate reason: her death.

Bland, 28, died in custody three days after she was arrested for allegedly assaulting a police officer during a traffic stop in Waller County, Texas, on July 10.

Bland was found dead in a jail cell. The circumstances of her death are obscure and it is now being investigated by the Texas Rangers in coordination with the FBI.

Bland is the latest victim of police brutality against African American women, says Kimberle Crenshaw, a Columbia Law School Professor, in a press release. Crenshaw is described as a leading authority on how law and society are shaped by race and gender.

Sandra Bland is one of too many names to be added to the list of Black women dead at the hands of police in the U.S. As a result, the report Say Her Name: Resisting Police Brutality Against Black Women has been updated with the circumstances around Bland’s suspicious death.

On July 10, 28-year-old Sandra Bland was pulled over for failing to signal a lane change, and, as a video of her arrest shows, was pinned to the ground and surrounded by police officers. Bland was heard questioning the officers about why they had slammed her head to the ground, and complaining that should could not hear. Officers charged her with assault and held her in the Waller County Jail. Bland was found dead in her cell three days later. Bland had recently driven from suburban Chicago to Texas to begin a new job at her alma mater, Texas Prairie View A & M. Officials maintain that her death was a suicide, but Bland’s friends and family members adamantly reject this explanation and suspect foul play.
— Say Her Name: Resisting Police Brutality Against Black Women

The report was first issued in May 2015 by the African American Policy Forum, the Center for Intersectionality and Social Policy Studies at Columbia Law School, and Andrea Ritchie, a Soros Justice Fellow. It aims to document stories of Black women who have been killed by police, shining a spotlight on forms of police brutality often experienced disproportionately by women of color.

The report also calls for a gender inclusive movement to end state violence.

Too often death of black women goes unacknowledged, said Opal Tometi, one of the co-founders of the Black Lives Matter movement, at the kick off the 2015 edition of BlogHer conference in New York on July 16.

Tometi and Pratisse Cullors, also co-founder of the movement, both reacted to Bland's death. Watch here.

In 2015 alone, at least six Black women have been killed by or after encounters with police, according to the report Say Her Name.

#SayHerName campaign kicked off in New York in May 2015.