By Associated Press - Monday, April 25, 2022

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — A Michigan police chief reversed course Monday and publicly identified the officer who fatally shot Patrick Lyoya in the back of the head during an April 4 traffic stop.

The Grand Rapids officer is Christopher Schurr, Chief Eric Winstrom said.

Lyoya, 26, a Black man and native of Congo, was killed after a struggle with the officer.

“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.

It was a reversal. In the aftermath of the shooting and the release of video, Winstrom said he would withhold the officer’s name unless he was charged with a crime. It 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, repeatedly called for transparency and release of the name.

“We want his name!” Sharpton shouted at Lyoya’s funeral, saying authorities cannot set a precedent of withholding the names of officers who kill people unless the officer is charged.

The Renaissance Church of God in Christ in Grand Rapids was filled to capacity of 1,000 for the funeral Friday.

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