City proclaims Sandra Bland Day on fourth anniversary of her death

“She was the person who cared about things that mattered. For the little people, the person who nobody really listened to. That’s the Sandy I remember, that’s the Sandy I miss today.” said Geneva Reed-Veal 

Standing outside Huston-Tillotson University Saturday, Reed-Veal remembers her daughter Sandra Bland. 

“I’m just amazed at what she would be doing if she was here.” she said. 

Bland was pulled over by trooper Brian Encinia in Waller County, Texas in July 2015, for failing to signal. The stop escalated, and three days later on July 13, authorities say Bland hanged herself in a jail cell.

Encinia was fired in 2016 after being indicted for perjury. The perjury charge was later dropped in exchange for Encinia agreeing to never work in law enforcement again.

“We’re dealing with a system that is not too favorable with encounters that we have with encounters that we have as African American people.” Reed-Veal explained. 

This July 13, four years after Bland’s death, the City of Austin honored its first Sandra Bland Day. 

“To have Sandra’s day, on the day that she left us four years ago is very important, because it will always serve as a memory of who she was, what she brought to this world," Reed-Veal said. 

This includes lessons that her mother said her daughter left behind, even in death.

“I just want everybody to remember that she’s still speaking even though she’s no longer with us in the physical body.” she added.