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After initially saying he would not name the officer who shot and killed Patrick Lyoya unless charges were brought, Grand Rapids Police Chief Eric Winstrom publicly identified the officer Monday despite no charges being filed.
“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.
An attorney for the family, Ven Johnson, did not see the police chief’s announcement as being transparent.
“It’s not transparent when you hide something for three weeks. It’s quite the opposite,” Johnson said. “It’s cops taking care of the cops instead of treating it like a normal investigation.”
Family Orders Independent Autopsy of Patrick Lyoya
The Lyoya family had an independent autopsy performed by expert Dr. Werner Spitz ahead of the official autopsy part of the state’s investigation. The 95-year-old forensic pathologist participated in the assassination investigations of President John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr., among other high-profile cases.
“There’s no question what killed this young man…It was a powerful bullet,” Spitz said, appearing at a news conference with lawyers for Lyoya’s family.
Spitz said he believes the gun was pressed against Patrick Lyoya’s head when the officer fired, based on the condition of a bone in the head.
Officer Schurr fired one shot into the back of Lyoya’s head killing him.