Seattle police kill woman that family says was pregnant

Seattle police officers have reportedly shot and killed Charleena Lyles, a 30-year old pregnant woman, in her home in front of her children.

The woman's relatives said Lyles had mental health problems for the past year and was anxious authorities would take away her children, including one son suffering from Down syndrome. Lyles was black and the two Seattle Police Department officers who responded to the scene were white, according to the Seattle Times. While the officers maintain that they feared for their safety, Lyles' sister Monika Williams wonders why they couldn't have used an alternative approach.

"They didn't only take one life - they took two lives", Wanda Cockerhern, Lyles cousin, told the Guardian on Monday.

Williams said Lyles had "mental health problems", and that her late sister was arrested earlier in June after arming herself with a pair of scissors as protection against her boyfriend.

"Officers were confronted by a 30-year-old woman armed with a knife", the Seattle Police Department wrote on its website. Both officers have been placed on paid administrative leave, police said.

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Family members said Lyles had experienced mental health problems in the a year ago and that she was several months pregnant, which BuzzFeed News couldn't immediately confirm. "They're being cared for by other family members at this time". Lyles was several months pregnant and had been battling "mental health problems" for at least the previous year, according to the Seattle Times. They take down her contact information and confirm what was stolen.

"She has mental health issues that nobody's trying to f**king address", Williams insisted.

As part of reforms within the Seattle Police Department, officers must undergo more de-escalation and crisis intervention training. Roughly 15 seconds later, officers can be heard saying, "Get back!"

As many people across America wrapped up their Father's Day activities on Sunday, protesters in Seattle gathered outside Lyles' apartment building.

On the audio, the woman can be heard discussing with the officers that there was a break-in.

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Lyles' shooting has drawn severe outcry from critics who lambasted the officers for not using a non-lethal method to control the woman.

Organizations fighting against police brutality of Black people in the United States are raising alarm bells at yet another instance of this recurring kind.

He added that the investigation will be reviewed by a federal monitoring team supervising a consent decree involving the Seattle Police Department.

Family members arrived at the scene an estimated two hours after shooting and could not believe that officers would have fired on the "tiny" woman.

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray called the incident a "tragedy for all involved". "This will be fully investigated", Murray said.

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