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The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell, Transcript 07/22/15

Guests: Sharon Cooper, Cannon Lambert, Nicole DeBorde, Carmen Roe, AprilRyan, Jonathan Allen

LAWRENCE O`DONNELL, MSNBC HOST: Meyers -- RACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC HOST: No -- O`DONNELL: As I always -- so I`m going to be taking style notes when I watch Seth Meyers -- MADDOW: No -- O`DONNELL: As I always do with you -- MADDOW: No, don`t, in this case, you are -- you are forbidden from taking style notes, the pants and those high tops is terrible. O`DONNELL: And you`re so right about Donald. He takes the word boring -- MADDOW: Yes -- O`DONNELL: Out of any -- (LAUGHTER) Phrase involving political campaigning, it is -- it is no longer boring. MADDOW: That`s exactly right, thanks for everything -- O`DONNELL: Thanks, Rachel. MADDOW: Thanks. O`DONNELL: Well, today, Rick Perry asked Donald Trump a question that Donald has not yet answered -- have you no decency, sir? But we will begin tonight with the arrest and death of Sandra Bland. Sandra Bland`s sister is our first guest. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) CANNON LAMBERT, LAWYER: Right out of the gate, you see from that dashcam that this could have easily been avoided. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We start with big developments in the investigation into Sandra Bland`s death. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: In the footage from July 10th, Bland is initially pulled over by state trooper Brian Encinia -- UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You can see how this routine traffic stop turned so wrong, so quickly. SANDRA BLAND, DECEASED: Why am I being apprehended? -- BRIAN ENCINIA, POLICE OFFICER: I don`t know -- BLAND: You then opened my car door -- (CROSSTALK) ENCINIA: I`m going -- BLAND: Opened my car door -- ENCINIA: To drag you out of here. BLAND: So, are you going to -- you (INAUDIBLE) drag me out of my own car? -- (CROSSTALK) ENCINIA: Get out of the car! UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right -- BLAND: And do you -- (CROSSTALK) ENCINIA: I will light you up, get out! BLAND: Wow. ENCINIA: Now! UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They walk around the car, out of the view of the dashcam and according to his affidavit, she kicked him and elbowed him. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She was placed in the Waller County jail where she was found dead in her cells. LESTER HOLT, JOURNALIST: Sandra Bland`s family and others have questioned the official version of her death. LAMBERT: What raises questions is why it is that age 28-year-old woman who had received two job offers would take her own life? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Now, the family has returned to Chicago and she will be buried on Saturday. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Tonight as three separate investigations unfold, the Waller County Sheriff`s office released medical evaluation forms apparently filled out by a deputy the day Sandra Bland was arrested. The "yes" box is checked, next to the question, taking medication? But no medications are listed. Next to the question, are you thinking of killing yourself today? The "no" box is checked. And to the question, have you ever attempted suicide? The "yes" box is checked. To the question when? It says 2014, why? Lost baby -- how? Pills. A note on the form says inmate states she has epilepsy. A 52-minute video, dashcam video showing the arrest of Sandra Bland includes her telling the arresting officer that she has epilepsy. The dashcam video shows Sandra Bland being pulled over simply for changing lanes without signaling on a low-traffic road where clearly no signal seems necessary. Especially since she knew the only car behind her was that police car. On a -- on the dashcam video, she is heard explaining that she changed lanes to get out of the way of that police car. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) ENCINIA: Hello, ma`am, (INAUDIBLE) I pulled -- the reason for your stop is you then failed -- you failed to signal a lane change -- that`s why I`m going to return to the -- OK, ma`am, are you OK? BLAND: I`m waiting on you, you -- this is your job, I`m waiting on you, what do you want me -- ENCINIA: Oh, you -- BLAND: To do? ENCINIA: Seem very irritated. BLAND: I am, I really am, but that`s what I just said, what I`m getting a ticket for, I was getting out of your way, you were speeding up suddenly, so I moved over and you stopped me, so, yes, I am a little irritated, but - - ENCINIA: Yes -- BLAND: That doesn`t stop you from giving me a ticket. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All right, can sir -- UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, I should have a car -- ENCINIA: Are you done? BLAND: You asked me what`s wrong and I told you. ENCINIA: OK -- BLAND: So now, I`m done, yes. ENCINIA: OK, you mind putting out your cigarette, please, if you don`t mind? BLAND: I`m in my car, why do I have to put out my cigarette? ENCINIA: So, you can step on out now. BLAND: I don`t have to step out of my car. ENCINIA: Step out of the car -- BLAND: So, am I -- ENCINIA: Step -- BLAND: No, you don`t have -- ENCINIA: Out of the car -- BLAND: No, you don`t have the right, you do not -- ENCINIA: Step out of the car -- BLAND: You do not have the right -- UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, I heard -- BLAND: To do that -- ENCINIA: I do have the right, now step out -- BLAND: I refuse to -- ENCINIA: Or I will remove you -- BLAND: I refuse to talk to you other than to identify myself and get -- ENCINIA: Step out or I will -- (CROSSTALK) Remove you -- BLAND: I am getting removed for it, a failure -- ENCINIA: Step out or I will remove you, I`m giving you a lawful order, get out of the car now or I`m going to -- (CROSSTALK) Remove you -- BLAND: And I`m calling my lawyer -- ENCINIA: I`m going to yank you -- (CROSSTALK) Out of here. BLAND: OK, you`re going to yank me out of my car? ENCINIA: Get out -- BLAND: OK, all right -- UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Twenty five, seven -- BLAND: Let`s do this. ENCINIA: Get out or you`re going to. BLAND: Yes, don`t touch me. ENCINIA: Get out -- BLAND: Don`t touch -- ENCINIA: Of the car! BLAND: Don`t touch me, I`m not under arrest, you don`t have the right to touch me -- (CROSSTALK) ENCINIA: You are under arrest -- BLAND: I`m under arrest for what? ENCINIA: Twenty five -- BLAND: For what? ENCINIA: Four-seven -- UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes -- ENCINIA: (INAUDIBLE) FM 1098 -- BLAND: For what? ENCINIA: Two-ninety, send me another unit -- get out of the car -- UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE) -- ENCINIA: Get out of the car, now! BLAND: Why am I being apprehended? You`re trying to give me a ticket -- (CROSSTALK) ENCINIA: I said get out of the car. BLAND: Why am I being apprehended? You then open -- ENCINIA: I didn`t know -- BLAND: My car door -- (CROSSTALK) You then open my car door -- ENCINIA: I`m going to drag you out of here -- BLAND: So, are you going to -- you -- drag me out of my own car -- UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE) -- ENCINIA: Get out of the car! UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right -- BLAND: And do you -- (CROSSTALK) ENCINIA: I will light you up, get out! BLAND: Wow -- ENCINIA: Now! BLAND: Wow -- ENCINIA: Get out of the car! -- BLAND: Arrested for failure to signal, you`re doing all of this for a failure -- ENCINIA: Get over there. Come over here -- (CROSSTALK) BLAND: About to break my wrist, can you stop?! (CROSSTALK) You are -- my wrist -- stop! ENCINIA: Try and move them, stop now! Stop it! UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Stop resisting, ma`am. BLAND: Oh, no, it makes you feel real good, you`re a real man now, you slammed me, knocked my head on the ground, I got epilepsy -- ENCINIA: Good -- BLAND: I`m helpless -- ENCINIA: Good -- BLAND: Good?! UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You should have thought about -- BLAND: Is it good -- (CROSSTALK) UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That before you started -- BLAND: All right -- UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Resisting -- (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Joining us now, Sharon Cooper, Sandra Bland`s sister, also with us, Cannon Lambert, the family`s attorney. Sharon Cooper, first of all, I am very sorry for your loss, I understand how difficult this has to be for you to watch a video like that and now discuss this situation. That video has been around, been available to us now for about 24 hours, a little more than 24 hours. Could you give us your reaction to having seen it and as you continue to see it, what your reaction is to it as you watch it. SHARON COOPER, SISTER TO SANDRA BLAND: Overall, my reaction to the video - - and thanks so much for your condolences. I am just wild at this point based off of the video, also all of the new updates that have seemingly come out in the next -- in the last couple of hours here. You know, quite frankly, the decision to pull her over for her failure to signal, you know, to utilize her turn signal is a baseless reason, in my opinion. And I think it`s -- I think the officer was picking on her. And in terms of the type of rhetoric and discourse that the officials have engaged in over the last couple of hours has pretty much just wowed me. I am just baffled by the engagement in the derogatory comments to vilify her character and really shift the focus from what the real issues are here, which is the level of inconsistencies in the documents that we`ve received. Yes, we`ve received the documents that you`re referring to and they simply don`t add up. O`DONNELL: All right, I want to work backwards toward the arrest because it is an inexplicable arrest. And I just want to say, in a lifetime of driving, I have changed lanes like that every single day of my driving life somewhere without that signal. And I have never been pulled over for that, I certainly use lane changing signals on high-speed roads with a lot of traffic and whenever it`s necessary, but I`ve never seen anyone pulled over for that. But I want to work backwards from this latest document that came out from the police department today with these check marks. And there is no -- I just want to stipulate for the moment and attorney Lambert, I want to hear you on this. But there`s no actual proof on this document as I can tell, about when it was actually written, when it was filled out, was it filled out after her death? I don`t think we can proof that at this point in time, no matter what it says in terms of the handwritten date. But it does check off the box, where it says, have you ever attempted suicide and it says, yes, in 2014, lost baby and the method was pills. Sharon, what do you know about that? What can you tell us about that? LAMBERT: Well, I just want to stop you, though -- O`DONNELL: OK -- LAMBERT: Before we go into that, because the reality of it is, is that some of the things you talked about are very significant. We don`t know that those documents frankly are -- when they were generated. And so for them -- I have some real concerns. I mean, there is a lot of unusual things that are taking place right now. We`ve got unusual circumstances that surround the dashcam tape and the glitches in the dashcam tape. We`ve got unusual circumstances in the jailhouse tape, where there is actual time missing from the tapes. We`ve got unusual circumstances where all of a sudden we have booking records that pop up out of nowhere. And now, not -- I just got a text from the Waller County ADA telling us -- and this is the day that we bring Sandy home to Chicago from Texas. I just got a text telling us that they now are going to need to do a second autopsy because their first autopsy was defective. How is this family supposed to feel confident in the way that this is being handled and in the suggestion as to how Sandy died? O`DONNELL: And did the family conduct its own autopsy? Did you contract a separate autopsy? LAMBERT: We absolutely did, Lawrence, we did that. And what`s most disturbing to me is, is that we couldn`t do so until after Sandy was released to us. And she was released to us from the Harris County Coroner. They did their own -- they told us it was a full, fair and complete autopsy. But now, today, just a few moments ago, we received a text, saying we are going to need a second one because our first one wasn`t good enough. O`DONNELL: So, this is a -- this is a breaking news situation right now that this county, this district attorney is asking you to cooperate in delivering Sandra`s body back for a second autopsy. LAMBERT: Three days before she is to be put to rest. Her funeral is scheduled on the 25th. This family has gone through the process of going down and bringing her back and when they brought her back, started -- and they had -- even before they did that, they started planning for her home going. And now, today, a few moments ago, we get faced with a text saying, well, our first autopsy was not sufficient. We are going to need another one. It`s very unusual and it`s really challenging -- COOPER: That`s true -- LAMBERT: For me to be able to say and appeal to her better angels and saying to her family`s better angels and say, let`s let this process take its course because we have to have faith that they`re going to do what they`re saying they`re going to do. It`s -- you know, we`ve got requests out right now for records and so forth that haven`t been met or addressed or responded to. And instead, things are getting trickled out and I don`t know where they came from or when they were generated. I mean, the reality of it is that there are a whole host of things that are very unusual as to how they are playing out. O`DONNELL: What is the FBI`s involvement in this investigation at this point? LAMBERT: As I understand it, they are observing the investigation, I don`t quite -- I`m not quite clear as to whether or not -- O`DONNELL: Have -- LAMBERT: They forced -- O`DONNELL: Have you -- LAMBERT: Their own -- O`DONNELL: Have you considered -- I know you`ve only had minutes now to consider this request for a second official autopsy. But have you considered the possibility of asking basically for a third party, a justice department, a federal version of that autopsy to be supervised in Chicago so that you won`t have to move Sandy`s body again? LAMBERT: Well, the practical reality of it is that, we have absolutely no intention of moving her body. We are going to see her homecoming and her home going go into effect. The reality of it in -- again, we wouldn`t have even been able to perform our autopsy, had it not been for the fact that they had done their full autopsy and then released her to us. It would have been unlawful for us to obtain Sandy and bring her home. This family flew home with Sandy on the same plane. And the solace that, that brought, as much as it was tearful, the solace that, that brought to this family, I observed myself personally. And I have to tell you to now be faced with a situation where we are being told that we didn`t do a good enough autopsy. Is -- it just -- it really is not something that you see. You just don`t see this type of thing. O`DONNELL: Sharon, tell us what it`s been like to have to go to Texas like this to -- in a situation like this, and, you know, even if this was a natural causes death, to go down there and to bring your sister`s body back. And we know it was not a natural causes death and we know that the cause of her incarceration is demonstrably unlawful. There isn`t a single legal observer who has watched any of that videotape that I`m aware of anywhere who has said that, that was a lawful arrest. COOPER: It`s extremely challenging. It`s like ripping a band-aid off. For two weeks, I have to be frank and honest with you, it is challenging, it is long, it is painful and in light of the new information that we have just received quite honestly, it`s making it extremely difficult for us. For our concerns and our fears not to be heightened by the fact that something unusual happened to her. Due to the amount of errors and inconsistencies that we continue to see. O`DONNELL: And can I go to that -- the questions that are raised by this form that was released today on the question of -- did your sister lose a baby in last year? COOPER: Yes, she did, she did. O`DONNELL: And what can you tell us about that? How old was the baby? COOPER: It was a very early pregnancy, a painful experience and that`s as much as I know. O`DONNELL: So, it was a -- LAMBERT: It happened in 2014 -- O`DONNELL: And just -- LAMBERT: She was arrested on the 10th of July -- O`DONNELL: Yes -- LAMBERT: Two-thousand-and-fifteen, the timeline doesn`t seem to quite add up, that you would -- you`d be able to make it every day for a year. O`DONNELL: Yes, and -- LAMBERT: And then -- O`DONNELL: And Sharon, was this a pregnancy that we`re talking about or -- COOPER: Yes. O`DONNELL: So she hadn`t given birth and then lost a baby after giving birth. LAMBERT: No -- COOPER: No, just a miscarriage -- O`DONNELL: Yes -- COOPER: Yes -- O`DONNELL: A miscarriage, OK, good, I just wanted to get that -- get that clarified. COOPER: Sure -- O`DONNELL: And -- COOPER: Absolutely -- O`DONNELL: Were you aware of any prescriptions she was taking that would be in any way relevant to what we`re discussing tonight? LAMBERT: There was no prescriptions that she was taking that we are aware of. O`DONNELL: And what about phone calls from the jail cell, did you get a chance to talk to her? Do you know anyone who got the chance to talk to her? COOPER: Absolutely, my older sister had the opportunity to talk to Sandra at 1:50 on Saturday, July 11th, Sandy basically informed her that, she`d been in jail pretty much corroborating her traffic stop, saying that she was in jail over an improper lane change. She`d been given this bail that she thought was a bit unreasonable, but we assured her that we would get her out expeditiously. She knew us well enough to call back and she never called back. And the last time we heard from her was Saturday, July 11th. O`DONNELL: And how long had she been in jail by the time she had that conversation with your sister? LAMBERT: Roughly -- COOPER: Roughly less than 24 hours, based off of what we were told from the time she was booked to the time she got the call. O`DONNELL: Yes, and did she sound calm in that phone call? COOPER: Very calm, very calm, because she knows -- she knows that we`re here for her and that if she needs something we`ll get it and she didn`t call back on Sunday and it`s unfortunate. O`DONNELL: It`s -- it really is tragic, and again, Sharon Cooper, I can`t find the words to address your loss, I`m just very sorry. And -- COOPER: Thank you, I appreciate it -- O`DONNELL: Cannon Lambert, thank you very much for joining us and sharing with us that breaking news about this request. Is there any question that -- about whether or not you will comply with this request for a second autopsy? LAMBERT: I mean -- (CROSSTALK) There is no question -- COOPER: At this point -- LAMBERT: There is -- yes, number one, it would be a third autopsy -- O`DONNELL: Third -- LAMBERT: Yes, you -- it`s hard to get a grasp on how you can say to your - - to us, you`ve done a full, complete autopsy and now you can have your loved one. And then we come and we come and get our loved one and then we do our autopsy and we`re ready to lay her to rest and then somehow come back and say, we flubbed up. O`DONNELL: What about the results of your autopsy? Do you -- did you find anything in there that clarifies the case? LAMBERT: Our autopsy is not complete, our results are not complete as -- O`DONNELL: Right -- LAMBERT: You can -- as you well know. We -- much of what will happen is that our physician will look at the findings that they come to, along with a whole host of other things. We have to see the ligature, we haven`t been provided that yet, there is a whole host of things we have not been provided, that all go into the completion of our result or the result of the autopsy that was independently obtained. And that will probably be a couple, two, three weeks. O`DONNELL: Again -- LAMBERT: You know -- O`DONNELL: Thank you both very much for joining us tonight. And Sharon Cooper, again, I`m very sorry for your loss. COOPER: Thank you. LAMBERT: Thank you, Lawrence. O`DONNELL: Coming up, Joy Reid will join us from Texas with more about the death of Sandra Bland and the breaking news we`ve just received about the county`s request to do a second autopsy because the autopsy they performed, they now say was faulty. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) O`DONNELL: We have breaking news here that was just made -- created here in the last block where the attorney for Sandra Bland`s family says that he has just gotten a text from the Waller County Assistant District Attorney asking to perform another autopsy on Sandra Bland`s body because the District Attorney is saying the autopsy performed by the county is faulty. We`re going to have more on this after a break. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You need to leave, you need to leave. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I can`t hear you. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You need to leave -- UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Am I on public property? (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Joining us now, Msnbc national correspondent Joy Reid who is in Hempstead, Texas, tonight, Carmen Roe, Defense Attorney in Houston, Texas, and Nicole DeBorde, a former prosecutor in Harris County, Texas. Joy Reid, I just want to get your reaction to the breaking news we just developed on the show that the D.A. there has requested a second autopsy because the D.A. is saying the first autopsy that they did is faulty. JOY REID, MSNBC NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, that was actually really stunning to hear, Lawrence. Because you have to set the context here that tonight the District Attorney for Waller County was on another network, on television, essentially leaking portions of the autopsy that per the family and the attorney, the District Attorney`s office itself is now saying it`s not valid. So, you have within a two-hour span approximately, the same District Attorney`s office leaking information about Sandra Bland that you could say would go to the theory of suicide that`s being advanced by the Waller County police. And at the same time, texting the family and saying, by the way, we need the body back because the autopsy was no good. Well, then, why are they releasing selective information from it. Why not just release the whole thing? Well, now, we`re getting the information as to perhaps why we`re not getting the entire autopsy because they want to -- I don`t know, replace it, retract it. That is incredibly stunning, I`ve never heard of anything like that before. O`DONNELL: Nicole DeBorde, as a former prosecutor in that area, guide us through this. I don`t -- I have never heard of this kind of thing where the prosecutor asking to do a second autopsy because they made mistakes in the first one. NICOLE DEBORDE, FORMER ASSISTANT DISTRICT ATTORNEY, HARRIS COUNTY: Well, I mean, and first of all, you don`t leak part of it. You either decide to release the autopsy or you don`t. So, I`m not really sure what the theory is there. But it`s very unusual that you would go back and ask for yet another autopsy, especially after you already agreed to allow the body to be released. Hopefully, they`ll go up and actually allow the doctors to use a facility there in Chicago as opposed to having her sent back here. It`s very strange, it`s very disappointing. They`ve already released a video that have problems, now they`re telling us that they`ve got an autopsy that has problems. I really don`t understand what it is that`s happening over there. O`DONNELL: Carmen Roe, have you ever heard of one of these instances before, where a D.A. says, oh, we`ve made some mistakes in the first autopsy, we`d like to do it again. CARMEN ROE, ATTORNEY: No, it`s very unusual, but you know, it`s just one more mistake that`s been made in Waller County which is every bit the reason why we need the DOJ. We need the FBI to get involved and we need someone else to oversee this investigation -- if not, take it over, so we can have some confidence in the outcome and save this family from further furthering their pain. O`DONNELL: And Joy Reid, I`ve been reading these police documents, especially the one that came out today with these check marks on it. And I just want to clarify for the audience, Sandra Bland doesn`t write anything on these forms, her signature does not appear on these forms. These are just boxes checked by someone there at the police station and it`s all handwritten, there is certainly no computer code on it or anything that would indicate an actual time stamp. And so, to be absolutely certain as to when this form was filled out, whether it was filled out at what -- at the time that they suggest it was or whether it was filled out after her death, that`s not something we can be certain of. REID: Right, it`s not certain, and I think it`s really important that you made that point, Lawrence, because I think that in the media, we`re accustomed to just receiving documents from police agencies and then making that the official narrative of the story without really interrogating it much. That`s the official statement. But keep in mind the trooper Encinia who in this case, you can see from the 49-minute video or the one they said it was glitchy, that was a little bit shorter. That he literally escalated that situation based on asking Sandra Bland if she would like to put out her cigarette and when she said she would not, he then immediately orders her out of the car. But the cigarette part of that encounter, the part about her not refusing to put out a cigarette, which was the reason she was taken out of the car. And then the part about the trooper pulling his taser and essentially threatening to "light her up", none of that was in trooper Encinia`s own police report. So, if you just go by the sort of blunt narrative that`s in trooper Encinia`s police report, you don`t even get the full picture that emerges on the dashcam video. So, I think there are enough discrepancies here, where you have to take everything with the grain of salt, no matter what the written document is. And again, any leaks out of the District Attorney`s office alluding to an autopsy that now, the same office is saying is invalid. There`s so much here that doesn`t add up and I think you`ve got really nothing but questions at this point. O`DONNELL: I want to look at the dashcam video once again at the first moment where the officer tells Sandra Bland that she is under arrest. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) ENCINIA: Get out of -- BLAND: Don`t touch -- ENCINIA: The car -- BLAND: Don`t touch me, I`m not under arrest, you don`t have the right to touch (INAUDIBLE) -- ENCINIA: You are under arrest. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Now, Nicole DeBorde, there she is, she`s in the car, she`s behind the wheel, he tells her that she`s under arrest. He says it twice actually when she is still in the car on the video. In his police report, his written report, he says the arrest did not occur until well after she was out of the car several minutes after what we just saw. This video directly contradicts his police report. DEBORDE: Well, absolutely. And it also appears to contradict the facts. I mean, he is telling this woman that she`s under arrest when really, we haven`t seen any possible lawful reason that she could actually be under arrest at this point. He is actually the one escalating this circumstance as was mentioned earlier. He should have training to deescalate this kind of a circumstance, not to make it worse. O`DONNELL: And Carmen Roe, as we see what is in effect, kind of an argument about the law developing between the officer and Sandra there -- she`s right. Everything she is saying back to him is actually more legally grounded than what he is saying. ROE: That`s exactly right, Lawrence. And just like what you said earlier, this stop was illegal. And I think that what they need to do is spend less time worrying about how Sandra might have caused her death and a little bit more time focusing on how Texas could have prevented it. And perhaps, even looking into what Nicole discussed, which is the potential offensive official oppression. I mean, this officer suggested that he was arresting Sandra and attempted to yank her out of the car, knowing that he had no lawful authority to do so. And in Texas, that`s a crime. And so I think we might need to spend some time looking into that as well. O`DONNELL: All right, we`re covering the breaking news situation tonight just revealed on this program that the District Attorney in Texas is asking for a second autopsy on Sandra Bland. Because the District Attorney is saying that the first autopsy that they performed, he`s now saying that, that autopsy is faulty. We will be right back with more on this. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) ATTY. CANNON LAMBERT, GENEVA REED-VEAL`S ATTORNEY: I just got a text telling us that they now are going to need to do a second autopsy, because their first autopsy was defective. How is this family supposed to feel confident in the way that this is being handled, and in the suggestion as to how Sandy died? (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: We are back with MSNBC National Correspondent Joy Reid, who is in Texas tonight. Also with us Carmen Roe, an attorney in Houston and Nicole Deborde, former prosecutor, who is also joining us from Texas. Joy Reid this is the breaking news that just occurred on this program that the Assistant District Attorney texted the attorney for the family saying the autopsy that they did is defective and they want to do a second autopsy. Has the District Attorney`s office commented publicly on this yet? JOY REID, MSNBC NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: There is been no public comment yet, Lawrence. But, I did just get off the phone with an assistant District Attorney, whose name is Warren Diepram (ph) who said, "He is the ADA that handling the forensic side of this investigation, saying that he was not aware of a text to that effect. But what they are saying is that they are attempting to convey that they want a whole new autopsy, but that text may have been meant to convey that there might be certain forensic material on or in the body that might be useful to the investigation and that, that material if it is in there should be preserved in some way. So, we are still trying to find out what that means, whether they are saying the body should not be embalmed, whether they are saying the body should not be -- it was not clear. I was not able to complete the phone call, because we were coming back. But, that is what this particular Assistant District Attorney was saying, not being able to tell you who texted the attorneys for the family. I cannot tell you if it is the same person. But this ADA is attempting to clarify, saying they are not requesting a new autopsy that in the words of this particular ADA, the autopsy in Harris County, Texas has been done. It is finalized. It is not faulty per this ADA. O`DONNELL: Carmen Roe, that sure sounds like a faulty autopsy to me, even though the ADA is trying to say it is not faulty. We just left some material there that we should have collected and did not. That is one of the definitions of a faulty autopsy. ROE: Absolutely, Lawrence. I mean it would be funny if it was not so tragic what is going on in this case. Again, you know, this Harris County autopsy, yes, but it is Waller County officials over and over again. And, this is why we need to have some superior individuals that are separate, that are unbiased, that are outside of Waller County, Texas, handling this investigation. Because you cannot have confidence in these types of results. O`DONNELL: Nicole Deborde, it sounds like Waller County just is not up to handling this kind of case? DEBORDE: It certainly does appears that they are in a little bit over their heads at this point. And, the reality is that one of their own -- this event occurred in their county and in their jail. I think for the public to have confidence in whatever the results are of this investigation, there probably does need to be some outside oversight, just so that someone can be taking part in, or leading the investigation that does not have a dog in the hunt. O`DONNELL: And, Joy, what about the FBI`s role in this? Is that -- might that be enhanced after a night like this -- this ridiculous string of errors? REID: Well, that is, actually, one of the -- definitely one of the reaches out that I want to make it to the Justice Department to see if this changes, because as of now, Lawrence, this is just an observation. And, when we see these cases happen, before what happens is the Feds will observe and they will sort of exist parallel to the local or state investigation. They do not jump right in and take it over. Although many times you see the families after that. That happened in the Michael Brown case, where the family and the community wanted the Feds to take over. That is not usually the way it works. At the moment the FBI is monitoring and observing the state and local investigation. We will see if all of these kind of confusion changes that. But, at this moment the FBI is not the active investigating party. O`DONNELL: Joy Reid, Carmen Roe, Nicole Deborde, thank you all very much for joining us on this breaking news tonight. Thank you. Up next, Donald Trump versus the Republican Party. (MUSIC PLAYING) (COMMERCIAL BREAK) O`DONNELL: 60 years ago, Republican Senator Joseph McCarthy was terrorizing Washington by throwing around wild accusations about communists working in the government. The most memorable moment of McCarthy`s unhinged crusade, which eventually brought him down, came to be known -- in that crusade came to be known as McCarthyism. The most memorable moment is when Joseph Welch interrupted the senator at a hearing to say this. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) JOSEPH WELCH, CHIEF COUNSEL FOR THE UNITED STATES ARMY: I beg your pardon. Let us not assassinate this land further. You have done enough. Have you no sense of decency, sir, at long last? Have you left no sense of decency? (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: And, today in Washington, Rick Perry took on Donald Trump and Trumpism and asked the question of Donald Trump - "Have you no sense of decency, sir?" (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) RICK PERRY, U.S. PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Donald Trump, the reality television star, is a great generator of ratings. But Donald Trump the candidate is a sore of division, wrongly demonizing Mexican-Americans for political sport. The sore of discord, agitation, thrives on division. Scapegoats certain elements of society and offers empty platitudes and promises. He is without substance, when one scratches below the surface. He offers a barking carnival act that can best be described as Trumpism. A toxic mix of demagoguery and mean spiritedness and nonsense that will lead the Republican Party to perdition if pursued. Let no one be mistaken, Donald Trump`s candidacy is a cancer on conservatism and it must be clearly diagnosed, excised and discarded. Donald trump is the modern day incarnation of the no nothing movement. He espouses nativism, not conservativism. I will not go quiet when the cancer conservatism threatens to metastasize into a movement of mean spirited politics that will send the Republican Party to the same place it sent the wit party in 1854, the graveyard. As a veteran, I took offense on his attack on Senator McCain. And, I found lacking Trump`s defense that he had spent a lot of money on veteran`s parades. Donald Trump was born into privilege. He received deferments to avoid service in Vietnam. He breathes the free air. Thousands of heroes died protecting. And, he could not have endured it for five minutes, what John McCain endured for five and a half years. (AUDIENCE APPLAUDING) But most telling to me about Mr. Trump`s bombast, his refusal to show any remorse for his comments about Senator McCain. And, was more telling to me was his admission that there is not a single time in his life that he sought the forgiveness of God. A man too arrogant, too self absorbed, to seek God`s forgiveness is precisely the type of leader John Adams prayed would never occupy the White House. When a candidate under the republican banner would have abandoned the traditional magnanimous leadership of the presidency; when he would seek to demonize millions of citizens; when he would stoop to attack P.O.W.S for being captured, I can only ask as Senator Welch did of Senator McCarthy, have you no sense of decency, sir? My fellow republicans, beware of false prophets. We must move past the empty calories of Trumpism and return to conservatism. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Republicans versus Donald Trump next with jonathon allen and April Ryan. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) PERRY: As a supporter of socialized medicine, the stimulus package and Hillary Clinton, Mr. Trump is quite suited to follow the Democrat example. (END VIDEO CLIP) O"DONNELL: Joining us now, April Ryan, the White House Correspondent and Washington Bureau Chief for American Urban Radio Networks. She is author of the book, "The Presidency in Black and White." Also, joining us, Jonathon Allen, Chief Political Correspondent for Vox. April Ryan, your reaction to Rick Perry`s speech today. This was clearly a very deliberate, written, strategic decision to go out there and just hammer right at Donald Trump. APRIL RYAN, WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: You are right. It is strategic, but let us go back a little bit. I think it was the best thing for Rick Perry that Donald Trump attacked him this week, talking about wearing glasses and looking smart, things of that nature, because now Rick Perry has able to put a little bit of the spotlight on himself by throwing the spotlight on Donald Trump. I mean it is like one dot follows the other. So, I think Rick Perry got his moment in the sun to stand out and say, "OK, we do not like Donald Trump." Now, it is time for Rick Perry to talk about what it is to be president. What he wants to do to be president. He got a little bit of spotlight on him now, but it is time to move on. And, that is part of the problem with Donald Trump. We are hearing all of these things and we are not hearing the substance behind it. You know, "We are going to bring back business." We are going to -- but how are you going to do that? You know, "We need to deal with illegal immigrants and deal with the border issue." How are you going to do that beyond saying that Mexico should pay for the fence or a wall. O`DONNELL: Jonathan Allen, are we approaching a spot -- as I listen to Rick Perry I began to wonder, are we approaching a spot where the test of seriousness for Republican presidential candidates is a speech like that. A speech that goes directly to and dismantles Donald Trump and shows that you are not afraid of Donald Trump and in effect declares the Republican candidate giving that speech to be a real Republican and Donald Trump is not the real Republican. JONATHAN ALLEN, CHIEF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Absolutely, Lawrence. I think the silver lining for the Republican Party here a year and a half before the actual election is that Donald Trump is by contrast showing how serious some of these candidates for the presidency really are. He is helping them prove that. I think a lot of them were very slow and weak in condemning his remarks on Mexican immigrants. But, we saw from Rick Perry tonight -- I mean earlier today was an opportunity to do that, to show contrast, to be serious, to set himself up. You know, there is a certain percentage of the Republican Party, that is not a small party, that would like to see Donald Trump go away. If Rick Perry wants to be one to be point of that spear, I think it will be beneficial for him whether or not, he ends up being president of the United States. I think there will be a lot of people in the party that are very happy with him. O`DONNELL: And, April, this is the -- traditionally, this is the unserious part of the campaign for republican voters, certainly in their responses to pollsters in 2007 in July at this point. Rudy Giuliani was way out at the top of the polls with 34 percent, way higher than Donald Trump is now -- Last time around, the last cycle, 2011, Michele Bachmann was the front runner of the polls. She was a point ahead of Mitt Romney at this point. And, so, this, as we look at these polls now, the ones that show Donald Trump on top, they just seem like the old Rudy Giuliani polls. RYAN: You know what happens when you peak early. You peak too early and then you kind of fall along the wayside. But, Donald Trump, I have a feeling, he is going to be the gift that keeps giving. He is going to find a way to reinvent himself. And, this is a man who has done this quite a lot in his political -- in his business career, now political career. So, I think that we are going to see the next crucial point for these 16 contenders to include Donald Trump will be the debates, where there are ten people standing up. And, I believe Donald Trump will have a binder of, I guess, skeletons in his binder for every candidate that is on the stage -- 10 candidates, to make himself stand out and to do what he did, like he did to Senator Graham with the phone. Giving out his phone number. So, I believe Donald Trump will continue to reinvent himself. When he is down in the polls all he has to do is throw out a negative bone and people are waiting to see this reality T.V. O`DONNELL: Jonathon Allen, every campaign strategist in the republican campaigns knows the biggest headline the day after that first debate is going to be who hit Donald Trump the hardest. (LAUGHING) ALLEN: Absolutely. And, they will be looking to do it in a way that does not show them to be angry. I mean one of the problems here is -- I sort of liken this recently to Donald Trump trolling the Republican Party. (LAUGHING) O`DONNELL: Yes. ALLEN: I mean he keeps sounding like he is serious, and nobody really thinks that he thinks that he is going to win the republican nomination; but what he is doing is baiting these guys in to anger in some cases. We saw that with Lindsey Graham before he put out the funny commercial. I think this is a problem for them on the debate stage. I think the debate is unpredictable. That is going to be a mess. It is going to be a little chaotic and somebody could emerge from that debate as being just right on. O`DONNELL: yes. We cannot wait for it. April Ryan, Jonathon Allen, thank you both very much for joining us tonight. When we come back, more on the breaking news tonight about the district attorney requesting a second autopsy on the body of Sandra Bland. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) ATTY. CANNON LAMBERT, GENEVA REED-VEAL`S ATTORNEY: I Just got a text telling us that they now are going to need to do a second autopsy, because their first autopsy was defective. How is this family supposed to feel confident in the way that this is being handled, and in the suggestion as to how Sandy died? (COMMERCIAL BREAK) O`DONNELL: Back with us now MSNBC National Correspondent Joy Reid in Texas. Joy, we now have the wording of the text that went to the lawyer representing the family about this second autopsy. And, it says that they need to have the body, quote, "Available for future examination by qualified experts." That means a second autopsy. REID: Or at minimum it means preserving the body, whatever the interpretation of what that means, because as the attorney was saying, they have a funeral planned. And, by its very definition embalming and burying a body would wipe away any forensic evidence. So, it seems as if even the clarification that I also got from the Assistant District Attorney, that text from the D.A. This is the Assistant District Attorney in Harris county was saying that they were not saying they want another autopsy. What the ADA was saying is that they want to have the forensic evidence on and in the body preserved. The big question there is, does that mean that they are saying the family cannot bury Sandra Bland`s body, because, again, by definition, they would be destroying the evidence. So, it is very confusing at this point. But, this A.D.A told me that the Harris County autopsy, as far as he is concerned. He is handling the forensics was not flawed and is complete. O`DONNELL: There is no question that what they are asking for in the text to the attorney representing the family -- there is no question that they are asking for a second autopsy because the words they use are, "Future examination by qualified experts." Now, they are in such chaos there tonight at D.As office that they have put out a statement on Facebook saying, "We have not requested a second autopsy. The first autopsy was conducted properly. Those statements are false." These two things cannot be true. This text is a request for a second autopsy. This latest statement is saying they do not need a second autopsy. This D.A`s office is out of control tonight. REID: Well, and then the other part of it that we need to get in to is the idea the D.A. would go public with elements of the autopsy at all, without releasing the full autopsy, so that the media, so that the family, so that everyone can examine the full result. What you have tonight was a selective leak of part of an autopsy that we are now hearing was not enough, at least in some way, according to the D.A. and it is complete confusion as far as I am concerned. O`DONNELL: Well, there is going to be a lot more on it tomorrow. Joy Reid, thank you very much for staying with us tonight. Chris Hayes is up next. END