GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The Michigan Court of Appeals will hear arguments next month in the case of the former Grand Rapids police officer who shot Patrick Lyoya in 2022.
The hearing for oral arguments is scheduled for Sept. 6 in Grand Rapids, the Kent County prosecutor said Thursday. It’s unclear when the appeals court would issue its decision following that hearing.
That Christopher Schurr shot and killed Patrick Lyoya during a traffic stop on April 4, 2022, is not in question. What is being debated in court now is whether he should stand trial for second-degree murder.
Schurr’s attorneys have claimed self-defense and say that Michigan common law gives officers the right to use deadly force against a fleeing felon. Prosecutors disagree, saying the law requires the use of reasonable force and arguing that the shooting was not justified. A Kent County judge in February said defense’s argument would set two different standards for murder and said the matter should be put before a jury. The defense appealed and the Michigan Court of Appeals agreed in April of this year to hear the case.
Video from the traffic stop shows Lyoya run away from Schurr and the two struggle over Schurr’s Taser. Ultimately, Schurr, who was on top of Lyoya trying to hold him down, shot him in the back of the head. Kent County Prosecutor Chris Becker charged Schurr with second-degree murder in June of last year, arguing the shooting could not be justified by self-defense. Schurr was fired.
Schurr was scheduled to stand trial in October, but the proceedings were delayed because his appeal was still pending.