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Civil Rights attorney Ben Crump Reacts to Lyoya Video Footage

Attorney Ben Crump speaks during a press conference at the site where George Floyd was killed in Minneapolis. Crump has represented numerous families of people killed by police.
Stephen Maturen
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Attorney Ben Crump speaks during a press conference at the site where George Floyd was killed in Minneapolis. Crump has represented numerous families of people killed by police.

Civil rights attorney Ben Crump returned to Grand Rapids today to address GRPD’s newly-released video footage in the death of Patrick Lyoya.

Ben Crump has represented families of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tamir Rice and a myriad of others in the fight against police brutality. He now set his sights on justice for the family of Patrick Lyoya, the 26-year-old who was fatally shot in the head by a Grand Rapids police officer during a traffic stop.

“The video shows this as his mother and father have said, an execution, and there is no way to try to spin it or justify it.”

In a press conference Thursday, Crump breaks down footage from the killing that released by the Grand Rapids Police Department one day prior. The video shows a taser deployed twice by the officer, and Lyoya putting his hand on it during a scuffle, before being fatally shot in the back of the head by the officer who was on top of him.

GRPD Chief Eric Winstrom has classified a taser as an “intermediate weapon” saying it could potentially cause death or great bodily harm in the case of a subject using it against an officer. However, Crump says the taser in question was rendered useless after two fires.

“That model of taser only allows you to fire twice, and this is important unless you have another cartage to put in the taser, it is ineffective.”

Along with Lyoya’s family, Crump welcomed in Tamika Palmer, the mother of Breonna Taylor, who was killed by Louisville police in 2020 during a botched raid. Both Palmer and Lyoya’s parents lost their children to police at the age of 26.

When asked about family wishes, Crump said he will continue to push for the name of the officer who killed Lyoya.