AUSTIN, Texas – Texas' top law enforcement officer is defending his troopers after an attorney for Sandra Bland's mother says de-escalation training is part of a $1.9 million wrongful death lawsuit settlement.
Texas Department of Public Safety Director Steve McCraw said Tuesday that such training is already embedded in recruit schools. He also again condemned the conduct of the trooper who stopped Bland as inappropriate.
Bland, a 28-year-old black woman, was found dead in a Texas jail last year days after a confrontational traffic stop with a white trooper. Her death was ruled a suicide.
Tom Rhodes, a Bland family attorney, says DPS attorneys gave no indication during settlement talks that the department had systematic de-escalation training.
The trooper who stopped Bland was fired and charged with misdemeanor perjury. He has pleaded not guilty.