Michigan: Ex-Cop Who Shot Patrick Lyoya to Face Murder Trial

Photo: MLive.com/The Grand Rapids Press/AP/Pool [via ABC]

The Facts

  • Christopher Schurr, a former police officer in Michigan who shot a Black man in the back of the head after pulling over his car, is going to stand trial for second-degree murder, said Judge Nicholas Ayoub on Monday.

  • The US judge reached his decision after he heard testimony and viewed a video of the death of Patrick Lyoya, a 26-year-old refugee from the Democratic Republic of Congo who had run a stop sign when he was pulled over in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

The Spin

Left narrative

Black people across the US continue to face excessive force and brutality at the hands of law enforcement authorities. Judge Ayoub's ruling marks a decisive victory for civil rights activists and residents who believe Schurr's actions were unjustified and typical of the officers' misconduct in the Grand Rapids Police Department.

Right narrative

The fact that Schurr will face trial only indicates that a low standard of evidence threshold has been met, not that this was necessarily an unjustified use of force. Law enforcement officers are often required to make split-second decisions that can have tragic results. Believing his life to be at risk, Schurr was forced to make a difficult decision that resulted in the tragic death of Lyoya.

Nerd narrative

There is a 2% chance that a large American city will fully abolish their police department before 2035, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

Articles on this story

Sign up to our daily newsletter