Just one day after Sandra Bland was found dead in her jail cell in Texas, another young black woman, Kindra Chapman, was found in eerily similar circumstances in a jail cell in Alabama.
The 18-year-old was arrested July 14 on accusations she stole a cell phone, according to AL.com. She was booked just before 6:30 p.m. and found unresponsive in her cell at 7:50 p.m. Like Bland, authorities have blamed Chapman’s death on suicide by hanging. Like Bland, Chapman’s family said the teen had a full and happy life and do not believe she committed suicide. Like Bland, Black Lives Matter activists have joined her family in demanding answers.
In an email to AL.com, Chapman’s mother, Kathy Brady, said she believes police killed her daughter, and that she wasn’t notified of Chapman’s death until 9 p.m.
Other family members who spoke with reporters said Chapman wouldn’t have killed herself.
“I want answers, like where was she for 45 minutes,” her cousin Otis Chapman asked local station WBRC. “There’s surveillance all around… She would not harm herself at all… In my heart, she wouldn’t do nothing like that.”
Chapman wore a bed sheet around his neck because authorities said his cousin was found hanged by a bed sheet. He was protesting at the jail because he didn’t want Chapman’s death to get “swept under the rug.” A “Black Lives Matter” banner could be seen behind him.
“She had family that loved her. She had unconditional love from all around,” her aunt Leslie Chapman told the station. “She would never do nothing like that, she was happy.”