US officials sued for black woman’s death in prison

Austin, Aug 5 (IANS) The family of a black woman who was found dead in a prison in the US has filed a lawsuit against the police officers who arrested her.

Sandra Bland, 28, was arrested on July 10 for a minor traffic violation, which had escalated into a confrontation with police officer Brian Encinia who threatened to “light her up” if she did not step out of her car, Efe news agency reported.

She was found dead in her cell after three days from self-induced asphyxiation, according to the autopsy report.

In the lawsuit, Encinia is accused of assault and aggression during the arrest and the prison screening officers of negligence for placing Bland in a jail cell.

Prison authorities said she had committed suicide using a garbage bag.

The case drew national attention after her family launched a campaign, questioning the official account of her death and suggesting she could have been killed in the cell.

US police department is under intense scrutiny for deaths of unarmed African-Americans in confrontation with its officers.

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