Grand Rapids Police Chief Eric Winstrom publicly named the white police officer who fatally shot Patrick Lyoya. The officer’s name, Christopher Schurr, was released in the “interest of transparency.”
Killer Police Officer Named In Patrick Lyoya Murder
Grand Rapids Police Chief Eric Winstrom has publicly named the white police officer who fatally shot Patrick Lyoya during an April 4 traffic stop.
The Grand Rapids officer is Christopher Schurr, Chief Eric Winstrom said.
“In the interest of transparency, to reduce ongoing speculation, and to avoid any further confusion, I am confirming the name already publicly circulating — Christopher Schurr — as the officer involved in the April 4 officer-involved shooting,” Winstrom said in a statement.
After the shooting and the release of the video, Winstrom said he would be withholding the officer’s name until he is charged with a crime. This was described as a long-standing practice that applied to the public as well as city employees.
Lyoya’s family and Black leaders, including the Rev. Al Sharpton had repeatedly called for transparency and release of the name.
“We want his name!” Sharpton shouted at Lyoya’s funeral on Friday. He said the authorities could not set a precedent of withholding the names of officers who kill people unless the officer is charged, and proceeded to call out the double standard that currently existed.
“Every time a young Black man or woman is arrested in this town, you put their name all over the news. Every time we’re suspected of something, you put our name out there,” Sharpton said. “How dare you hold the name of a man that killed this man? We want his name!”
Grand Rapids City Manager Mark Washington acknowledged the demand for the officer’s name after the funeral had occurred and said he would discuss the matter with Winstrom and city employment officials.
“Police reform requires evaluating many long-standing practices to ensure our actions are consistent with the best interests of the community and the individuals involved,” Washington said last week.
An autopsy commissioned by Patrick Lyoya’s family showed that he was shot in the back of the head at point-blank range. This family’s lawyer, Ben Crump, declared the killing an execution.
Patrick Lyoya’s family and lawyers had an autopsy commissioned that showed the 26-year-old was shot in the back of the head. The fatal incident followed an April 4 encounter with a Grand Rapids police officer, attorneys representing the family said Tuesday.
Lyoya and the yet-to-be-named officer had a physical encounter following a traffic stop.
“Today, based on scientific evidence, we can confirm that Patrick Lyoya was shot in the back of his head,” attorney Benjamin Crump said Tuesday in a news conference. “That is now scientific evidence of this tragic killing and what his family believes was an execution.”