Newly released autopsy reveals suicide not homicide
Medical examiners on Thursday ruled that the death of Sandra Bland was a suicide by hanging and said the autopsy uncovered no evidence of a violent struggle. Walter Country Assistant District Attorney Warren Diepraam announced the findings during a press conference. Diepraam said the autopsy found no defensive injuries on Bland’s hands — only abrasions on her wrist consistent with a struggle while she was being handcuffed. Warren Diepraam also said that the autopsy showed that Bland had ingested a large amount of marijuana, but that it was not clear how much or when.
The autopsy was conducted by the Harris County Medical Examiner’s office after the 28-year-old African American woman was found July 13 hanging by a trash bag. Bland was stopped by a Highway Patrol trooper for failing to signal a lane change. Diepraam, in a meeting with reporters, said the autopsy details, such as the state of Bland’s hands, eyes, mouth and neck, showed no indication that she had engaged in a violent struggle. The only injury to her neck or head was a “uniform and consistent” mark consistent with a suicide by hanging, not a violent strangling. Bland’s encounter with State Trooper Brian Encinia on July 10 escalated in minutes from a traffic stop to a physical struggle.
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