Texas D.A. wants more testing on body of Sandra Bland

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HEMPSTEAD, Texas — The attorney representing Sandra Bland’s family says the Texas District Attorney on the case wants a second autopsy. But a representative of that office tells WGN it is not requesting a second autopsy, but rather additional testing to confirm whether Sandra Bland may have swallowed large amounts of marijuana before her death.

“We don’t know what we can have faith in,” said attorney Cannon Lambert, expressing concern now that he says he has been put on legal notice to preserve the body of Sandra Bland that was flown back to the Chicago area yesterday, after her death in a Texas jail on July 13.

Authorities there say she committed suicide by hanging herself with a plastic bag, but the family says she would never do that.

Lambert provided screen shots of text messages he says he exchanged yesterday evening with Waller County D.A. Elton Mathis, in which Mathis reveals autopsy results show Bland may have swallowed a large quantity of marijuana and smoked in the jail.

He goes on to ask that the body not be disturbed any more so that she will be available for future examinations by qualified experts.

This new revelation comes after dash cam video showed the encounter with the Texas police officer that led to Sandra Bland’s arrest on July 10, and booking documents that seem to show conflicting information about whether Bland had ever attempted suicide, including within the last year.

Further complicating matters, Lambert says Bland’s body has already been embalmed so he is not sure what, if any, evidence it can provide now to authorities.

Lambert says the family’s independent autopsy was done over the weekend but the pathologist is still waiting on information from Texas officials to complete it.

The Waller County D.A. is planning a press conference for this afternoon to discuss the autopsy finding.

Lambert says the family of Sandra Bland is still planning to bury her this weekend.

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