US officer who killed Patrick Lyoya pleads not guilty to murder | Racism News

Killing of 26-year-old refugee in US state of Michigan has reignited nationwide debate over racism and police violence.

A police officer in the US who fatally shot an unarmed Black man throughout a visitors cease within the state of Michigan, setting off renewed protests and requires an finish to police violence, has pleaded not responsible to second-degree homicide.

Grand Rapids police officer Christopher Schurr, who turned himself in and is being held in a jail close to Kent County, appeared at a listening to on Friday through video convention to reply a number of largely procedural questions.

Grand Rapids Choose Nicholas Ayoub entered a not-guilty plea on his behalf, in keeping with the Related Press information company.

Ayoub additionally set a $100,000 money bond for the officer, who killed Patrick Lyoya, a 26-year-old refugee from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, throughout an altercation that adopted a visitors cease in Grand Rapids on April 4.

Schurr was charged with second-degree homicide on Thursday and will face a sentence of life in jail if convicted. Kent County prosecutor Chris Becker mentioned the killing was not “justified or excused, for instance, by self-defence”.

Lyoya was unarmed and laying face-down on the bottom when he was shot within the head, spurring widespread condemnation and calls from members of his household and the native Black group for Schurr to be fired and face felony fees.

US civil rights lawyer Ben Crump, who’s representing the Lyoya household, beforehand referred to as the killing “an execution”.

Schurr’s defence attorneys have described the capturing as an “unlucky tragedy” however denied wrongdoing, arguing that the officer feared for his security, a standard defence utilized by regulation enforcement officers accused of deadly use of pressure.

The Related Press reported that Schurr has no earlier accusations of extreme pressure.

Grand Rapids police chief Eric Winstrom launched footage of the capturing on April 13, and has advisable that Schurr be fired. The footage confirmed Lyoya operating away from his automobile and fighting Schurr over a taser.

The killing has reignited a nationwide debate over police shootings of unarmed Black males, which have led to vital nationwide protests and calls to confront the US’s historical past of structural racism in areas resembling regulation enforcement and felony justice.

The 2020 police killing of George Floyd, essentially the most high-profile case lately, drove vital protests throughout the nation and spurred requires police accountability.

In April of final 12 months, a jury discovered officer Derek Chauvin responsible of murdering Floyd, an unarmed Black man who was killed after the Minneapolis policeman kneeled on his neck for greater than 9 minutes.

However regardless of the demonstrations, police violence within the US has proven little signal of slowing down.

Final 12 months was one of many deadliest on document for police violence, with 1,136 folks killed by police within the US, in keeping with Policeviolencereport.org, a web site that independently tracks such killings.

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