GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Grand Rapids will release nine video files, including from a cruiser dashboard camera, body camera, doorbell camera and cellphone, on Wednesday that show a police officer shooting and killing Patrick Lyoya.
The video will be released during a press conference at 3 p.m. Wednesday. Grand Rapids Police Department Chief Eric Winstrom said he will “provide additional context to the footage” and explain where the investigation stands now and what will happen next.
The press conference will stream on the city’s YouTube channel and on woodtv.com. Winstrom warned the video will contain graphic images and strong language. Some of the images may have been blurred for privacy, Winstrom said, but the video has not been edited down and the audio has not been edited out.
Lyoya’s family has seen all of the video GRPD intends to release Wednesday, the agency said.
Lyoya, 26, died on the morning of April 4 on Nelson Avenue SE near Griggs Street. The Grand Rapids Police Department says he tried to run away from an officer, at which point there was a “lengthy fight.” Lyoya was ultimately shot.
“I understand that there are several expectations of community — as well as myself, as well as you — to ensure there is full transparency in this process,” City Manager Mark Washington said during a morning city commission meeting. “I support our police chief and his commitment to release videos that will show the events of April 4 in more detail. We anticipate body-worn camera, in-car video, doorbell camera and cell phone video will be released this week.”
“We ask the public to be prepared for the chief’s press conference this week that will entail the distribution of the videos and provide more information about the evidence,” Washington added.
City commissioners went into closed session Tuesday morning to discuss an anticipated civil lawsuit stemming from Lyoya’s death. The Lyoya family has retained civil rights attorney Ben Crump, who also represented the families of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor.
While the video has not yet been made public, Lyoya’s father and his interpreter have seen the moment of Lyoya’s death. They say it shows Lyoya being shot in the back of the head. News 8 has not seen the video and cannot independently confirm what it shows.
GRPD previously said the officer’s bodycam fell off in the struggle with Lyoya, so it’s unclear how much that particular source will show. The family says that the dashcam video gives a clear view of what happened.
“The video release tomorrow (Wednesday) will ensure that the integrity of the investigation, in the interests of justice and accountability, will be protected,” Winstrom said in a statement. “The Michigan State Police and the Kent County prosecutor are aware of the intended release.
“I thank the public for their patience and understanding while waiting for the release of the video,” Winstrom continued. “I intend to continue to be as forthright and transparent during the ongoing investigation…”
Winstrom told News 8 he would be at Tuesday evening’s city commission meeting, where protesters spoke during public comment following a march.
On Tuesday morning, workers put up cement barriers topped with chain-link fences around the entrances to GRPD headquarters downtown.
MSP is investigating the shooting, which is standard procedure anytime a local officer uses deadly force. The agency said Monday it hopes to get its investigation to the Kent County prosecutor by the end of the week, though it admitted that was an ambitious timeline because it had not yet interviewed the officer. The officer’s attorney was on vacation last week.
The officer’s name has not been released.
—News 8’s Joe LaFurgey and Luke Stier contributed to this report.