Demand Justice For Rafael. Call For A Full Investigation Into Deaths In Texas Jails.
A troubling trend is emerging in Texas: Citizens arrested for nonviolent offenses are dying while in police custody.
In July, Sandra Bland died just three days after being taken into custody by Dallas police during a routine traffic stop. Police said Bland committed suicide; on July 16, the district attorney's office said they would investigate her death as a possible murder.
Bland's death was a tragedy, but it wasn't the first time someone being held in a Texas jail ended up dead.
In February 2009, Webb County police took Rafael Solis, a 38-year-old father of two, into custody when he fell behind on child support payments. Three days later Solis was dead. Police said that Solis died after suffering a seizure, however, the county coroner ruled his death a homicide. An autopsy found that Solis had been forcibly held down and asphyxiated — the boot laces imprinted on Solis's body matched those of his jailers.
Traffic stops and routine arrests shouldn't end in death. That's why Public Justice is representing the family of Rafael Solis — his two young sons and their grandmother — as they seek to hold his jailers responsible and fight for justice in the courts.
No family should have to endure the tragedy that the Solis and Bland families have suffered.
Sign and join us in calling on the state Attorney General to investigate what is happening in Texas jails, and to ensure the families of those who have died receive the justice they deserve.
Attorney General Paxton,
An alarming trend is emerging from Texas jails: People arrested for nonviolent violations are dying while in police custody.
In July, Sandra Bland was found dead three days after being arrested during a routine traffic stop in Waller County. In 2009, Rafael Solis also died three days after being taken into custody by police in Webb County. In Waller County, Bland's death is being investigated as a possible murder. In Webb County, the local coroner ruled that Solis's death was a homicide. Texas jails have an obligation to keep those in custody safe, and to treat them with dignity and respect. It is time for a state-wide investigation into abuse in Texas jails, and a report on what is really happening.
I am joining Public Justice, and the family of Rafael Solis, in calling on you to thoroughly investigate the alarming incidents of death and abuse happening in Texas state facilities.
Texas jailers shouldn't be allowed to abuse, mistreat or kill those in their custody. Please take action now to ensure they do not.
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Update #15 years ago
On April 12th, a federal court ruled that the jailers accused in Rafael's death should face charges. This is a huge step forward in the fight to bring justice to Rafael’s family. At long last, those responsible for his death can finally be held accountable, and his family can finally have their day in court.