Lawyers for ex-Grand Rapids officer charged in deadly shooting ask judge to dismiss case

Jury trial set to begin on March 13

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – Attorneys for ex-police officer Christopher Schurr are trying to get his case dismissed before it goes in front of a jury.

During a traffic stop last spring, the former Grand Rapids officer shot and killed Patrick Lyoya while struggling over a taser.

Schurr was fired and has been charged with second-degree murder.

His attorneys are now trying to put the brakes on the case, filing a motion this week for the charges to be dropped.

In the filing, they argue Schurr acted in self-defense and that Michigan law allows police officers to use deadly force to stop someone from fleeing and to make an arrest.

The defense also pointed to a lack of clarity in Michigan law about when officers should or should not use deadly force.

“At present, it is ambiguous when a police officer may use force, including deadly force,” said the defense.

Read: Attorney: Ex-Michigan officer who killed Lyoya shouldn’t face trial

During their struggle, Schurr repeatedly told Lyoya to take his hands off the taser.

Video of the incident was presented during a probable cause hearing in October.

The district judge ultimately ruled there was sufficient evidence for the case to go before a jury, a decision the defense hopes to overturn.

The Kent County Prosecutor’s Office has two weeks to file a response to the motion to dismiss, which they fully intend to do.

As of now, the jury trial is set to begin on March 13.

About the Authors:

Jacqueline Francis is an award-winning journalist who joined the WDIV team in September 2022. Prior to Local 4, she reported for the NBC affiliate in West Michigan. When she’s not on the job, Jacqueline enjoys taking advantage of all the wonders Michigan has to offer, from ski trips up north to beach days with her dog, Ace.

Brandon Carr is a digital content producer for ClickOnDetroit and has been with WDIV Local 4 since November 2021. Brandon is the 2015 Solomon Kinloch Humanitarian award recipient for Community Service.