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Government Officials have been overwhelmingly silent after a GRPD officer shot and killed Patrick Lyoya in Grand Rapids

April 11, 2022

It has been more than a week since Patrick was shot in the back of the head, lying face down on the pavement, by a Grand Rapids Police officer. At the time of this article’s posting, there were a total of 108,000 letters signed by people about the GRPD murder of Patrick Lyoya.

In addition, those letters were addressed to the following people: 

  • Grand Rapids Mayor Rosalyn Bliss
  • Grand Rapids City Commissioners O’Connor, Reppart, Ysasi, Jones, Lenear and Moody
  • Grand Rapids City Manager Mark Washington
  • Grand Rapids Police Chief Eric Winstrom
  • GRPD Internal Affairs Joseph Trigg
  • Grand Rapids City Clerk Joel Hondorp
  • All 19 Kent County Commissioners
  • Captain of Transparency and Accountability Division with the Michigan State Police, Thomas Decays
  • Michigan State Police Director Colonel Joseph Gasper
  • State Representatives Julie Brixie, Rachel Hood, Kara Hope, Sara Anthony, Bryan Posthumus, David LaGrand, Steven Johnson, and Tommy Brann
  • State Senators Winnie Brinks and Aric Nesbitt
  • Rep. Peter Meijer
  • Senator Gary Peters
  • Senator Debbie Stabenow
  • Vice President Kamala Harris
  • President Joe Biden

This list is a total of 47 different government officials, from Grand Rapids all the way up to the White House. It has been over a week since a GRPD cop shot Patrick Lyoya in the back of the head. Of the 47 government officials, who have received over 108,000 letters on this matter, how many do you think have responded or made any public declaration about the case and the demands that are included in the letter?

  • I would never expect the President or the Vice President to respond, but NO
  • Senator Gary Peters – NO
  • Senator Debbie Stabeow – NO
  • Rep. Peter Meijer – NO
  • State Senator Brinks – NO
  • State Senator Nesbitt – NO
  • State Representative Brixie – NO
  • State Representative Hood – NO
  • State Representative Hope – NO
  • State Representative Anthony – NO
  • State Representative Posthumus – NO
  • State Representative LaGrand – NO
  • State Representative Johnson – NO
  • State Representative Brann – NO
  • Neither of the two Michigan State Police Officials
  • Of the 19 Kent County Commissioners, only Commissioner Womack has spoken up
  • None of the Grand Rapids City officials have responded to the letter, nor posted their outrage at the GRPD killing of Patrick Lyoya.

This means that of the 47 different government officials who have received 108,000 letters about the fact the a GRPD cop shot Patrick Lyoya in the back of the head, only 1 has spoken out against it.

So much for the idea of being public servants or responding to the will of the people. However, this is the history of government officials. As the late radical historian, Howard Zinn, points out, government officials only do what the public wants, when they are forced to do so, usually by organized social movements. In that tradition, we can force the local governments meet the demands that are being asked by Patrick Lyoya’s family.

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