Patrick Lyoya, 26, was killed after he was pulled over by a Grand Rapids police officer on April 4th over an unregistered license plate. The particular license plate on the car did not belong to the car, thus prompting the officer to stop him, Police Chief Eric Winstrom stated at a press conference. Police Chief Winstrom said that Lyoya got out of his car, tried to run away and was fatally shot after a “lengthy struggle,” although his family disagrees with that account, saying they viewed video of the incident that showed Lyoya facedown on the ground when he was shot in the back of the head. His mother stated, “I saw the video. I could not sleep. The boy was on the floor. The cop was on his knees, pulled out the gun and shot him in the head,”
Not much is known about the case at this moment and the GRPD has withheld some information regarding the incident. The police officer’s name who fatally shot Lyoya is yet to be released to the public to “protect his rights of privacy.” Already, hundreds have flocked to the streets on a march on Tuesday with a turnout of over 200 people outside of the Police station to protest the killing, and the shortcomings of the police when it came to the very limited details and evidence that was provided to the public.
Lawyer Ben Crump announced to the public that he will defend Lyoya in court. Mr. Crump is an African-American lawyer who specializes in civil rights cases and catastrophic personal injury cases like wrongful death lawsuits. His practice has been mainly focused on cases such as that of George Floyd, another victim of police brutality.
As far as released evidence at the moment, the only video that showed a clear picture of the shooting was the video recorded by a bystander. Released on Wednesday after a press conference, it clearly depicts the struggle between the officer and Lyoya, where he evaded the officer and tried to grab the taser that the officer had pulled, after which the officer on top of Lyoya, who was still holding on to the taser, retrieved his firearm and fatally shot him in the head. “This is very regrettable,” Grand Rapids City Manager Mark Washington said during the press conference on Wednesday. “A very sad day in our community.”
- Grand Rapids, Michigan, police release video of fatal traffic stop shooting of Patrick Lyoya (yahoo.com)
- Grand Rapids Police Release Video Footage Of Officer Fatally Shooting Black Man In The Back Of The Head (msn.com)
- ‘Frustrated and hurting’: Michigan Democrats demand accountability after fatal police shooting in Grand Rapids – mlive.com
- Police in Grand Rapids, Michigan, release video of the deadly shooting during a traffic stop (cbs58.com)
- Videos Show Police Officer Fatally Shooting Black Man in Michigan (The New York Times)