The Texas trooper who arrested Sandra Bland has formally been fired.
Trooper Brian Encinia was officially fired after he failed to “rebut disciplinary charges leveled against him in January, Public Safety Director Steven McCraw wrote in a letter of final termination,” the Huffington Post reports.
Encinia stopped Bland June 10, 2015, for reportedly failing to signal while switching lanes. Dash-cam video showed the encounter between Encinia and Bland, which escalated after the trooper ordered Bland to put out her cigarette and to get out of her car.
Encinia can be seen holding a stun gun and threatening, “I will light you up!”
Bland was arrested, and three days later she was found hanged in her Waller County Jail cell. Her death was officially ruled a suicide by the county coroner, a claim with which her family strongly disagrees. Encinia was indicted on perjury charges in December, accused of lying on his arrest record regarding Bland.
According to the Associated Press, in February, Encinia met with Department of Public Safety Director Steve McCraw, but that meeting didn’t lead McCraw to want “to alter my preliminary decision,” according to a termination letter signed by Encinia Wednesday.
Since Bland’s arrest, Encinia had been on paid desk duty and “remained on the payroll after McCraw announced in December that the agency would begin the process of firing him,” AP reports.
Although Encinia could appeal the termination, Department of Public Safety spokesman Tom Vinger told AP that Encinia is now no longer a paid employee and will remain that way even if he appeals his dismissal.