Law Enforcement Groups Oppose Some of the Bills Filed in Response to Sandra Bland's Death

AUSTIN – Sandra Bland's death in the Waller County Jail in July 2015 sparked public outrage and calls for changes to the criminal justice system.Bland, 28, was found dead of an apparent suicide in her cell three days after she was arrested during a routine traffic stop that escalated into a heated confrontation. The events leading to her death, critics say, highlight longstanding problems in the policing and criminal justice systems: the lack of resources for mental health training, inadequate use of de-escalation tactics, incomplete data on racial profiling, and policies that allow people who aren’t dangerous to remain too long in jail. Some of the bills Texas lawmakers have filed to fix those problems include measures that have been tried before, but Bland's death has re-energized advocates."We can honor [Bland] by making these improvements," said Randy Petersen, a senior researcher at the Texas Public Policy Foundation's Center for Effective Justice.  Continue reading...

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