In Michigan, the Grand Rapids Police Department has released video showing the fatal shooting of Patrick Lyoya, a 26-year-old Black man killed by a white police officer during a traffic stop last week. Lyoya died after the officer, who has not been named, wrestled him to the ground, kicked and hit him, attempted to electrocute him with a Taser and pinned him on his stomach, before pulling his pistol and firing a single round into Lyoya’s head. Attorney Ben Crump, who is representing Lyoya’s family, said the video shows unnecessary and excessive force, and he called for the officer to be fired and prosecuted. Police have said the officer will not be publicly identified unless prosecutors bring criminal charges. Ahead of the video’s release, activists took their protests to Tuesday night’s meeting of the Grand Rapids City Commission, demanding all the officers involved in Lyoya’s killing be named and held accountable.
Activist: “I am ashamed. I am humiliated. The shame that this city, my only home, brought death to this young man who came here with dreams for a future. You, too, should be ashamed. You should be weeping. You should want to turn loose all associations with the city government, the sham of a city government, because you’re supposed to preserve and improve the life of the residents of this place, and instead, the folks who are obligated and are under your responsibility allowed for the extinguishing of a life instead. You share the blame. The blood is on your hands, too.”
Lyoya comes from a family of refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo who moved to the United States in 2014. Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer has promised state police will conduct an independent investigation into his killing.