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Activists Rally For Justice In Lyoya’s Death

Rachel Kramer -

Grand Rapids Police Chief, Eric Winstrom will release body and dash camera footage from the shooting and killing of 26-year-old Patrick Lyoya Wednesday afternoon. The announcement came on Tuesday, just before activists marched downtown to address city leaders.

Patrick Lyoya’s name echoed through the streets of Grand Rapids downtown on Tuesday evening, as crowds marched to address city leaders at Grand Rapids City Commission Meeting, with a list of demands, among them releasing the name of the officer who killed the Congolese refugee.

“We’re requesting that city officials resign from their position they’ve abused their power…we’re asking for them to resign and we’re also asking for justice for Patrick Lyoya.”

Ola Banji Ola Tunde is a general with the Royal Black Panther Party of Grand Rapids. He and several others in the night’s outcry for justice cited the many protests local activists have held over the past two years surrounding police brutality, saying they fell on deaf ears.

“If people would have listened it would have been preventable but now it’s just like I told you so moment that’s exactly what it is. I told you so.”

As community members filled the meeting room, a moment of silence was held for Lyoya what followed was hours of public comment surrounding his death.

“many of us as refugee and immigrants came to America for safety and this is what happened, you took it away. You killed Patrick Lyoya. That’s just one thing that shouldn’t have happened if you really listened to us.”

Commission leaders responses closed the meeting. Third Ward Commissioner, Nathanial Moody, offering his piece.

“I was elected to listen and to hear you, but I ended up scolding you. I’m sorry for that. I’m saddened and heartbroken for Patrick’s family and for Patrick’s life. I ask that you would give us an me another chance and let us do this thing right.”

Body and dash camera footage of Lyoya’s slaying will released Wednesday at 3pm at a press GRPD press conference.