Michigan: Cop who shot black man faces second-degree murder charges

Grand Rapids officer Christopher Schurr (left) has been charged in the killing of Patrick Lyoya (right) at a traffic stop.

Grand Rapids officer Christopher Schurr (left) has been charged with killing Patrick Lyoya (right) at a traffic stop (Images: AP/Reuters)

A police officer who allegedly shot a black man lying on the ground in the back of the head has been charged with second-degree murder.

Grand Rapids Police Officer Christopher Schurr, 31, was charged Thursday in the April 4 killing of Patrick Lyoya, 26, a fugitive from the Democratic Republic of Congo.

“The death was not warranted or excused … in self-defense,” said Kent County Prosecutor Christopher Becker of the second-degree murder component.

Becker added that the indictment was merely an allegation and that “this case needs to be tried in court, but not necessarily in public.”

Video footage taken by a bystander shows Schurr, who is white, running over Lyoya’s car and telling him his license plate number doesn’t match his vehicle. When the police officer asks Lyoya for his driver’s license, he steps out in confusion and says, “What did I do wrong?”

Schurr then grabs Lyoya and makes him run away.

‘Stop!’ Schurr screams, and in a fight on a front yard, Lyoya appears to grab the cop’s taser.

Schurr yells, “Let go of the taser,” and seconds later he fires his revolver.

Lyoya died of a gunshot wound and his blood alcohol level was 0.29, more than three times the legal limit for driving, according to an autopsy report from the Kent County Chief Medical Examiner.

His parents called for Schurr to be released and charged, saying it was “another senseless murder of a black person in America by the very people who are supposed to be protecting them.” Lyoya’s parents say he was “killed like an animal” by police.

Breaking Story, check back for updates… Michigan: Cop who shot black man faces second-degree murder charges

Justin Scacco

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