Officer in shooting: 'I don't have a taser'

Author

22 June, 2017

30-year old Charleena Lyles, mother of four and pregnant with her fifth child was killed by two Seattle #police officers on Sunday, June 18.

According to The Washington Post, Seattle police representative Detective Mark Jamieson told reporters that "police were familiar with Lyles and her apartment", having interacted with Lyles within the last two weeks.

Monika Williams emphasized that Lyle was not very tall and there was no reason for her to be shot, adding that officers could have just tased her. An unidentified officer yells "get back, get back", and then shots ring out. A police audio recording has the officers shouting "get back!" and the woman saying "do it! do it!" "I could have taken her down". There's no way you could've taken a taser and taken her down? The Seattle Times also reports that the Seattle Police Department "has been under a federal consent decree since 2012 after a Department of Justice investigation found its officers routinely engaged in excessive use of force, most often against people with mental or substance abuse problems".

Although Lyles had previous altercations with the police, none of this justifies or explains the use of force, much less deadly force, on a tiny pregnant woman who was holding (or even wielding) a knife. It is when we hear her invite the officers to look around the apartment that some type of struggle is heard. "There was some hazard information so that prompted a second officer to respond", Jamieson said.

At some point, the woman confronted them with a knife, and both officers shot their weapons, authorities said. An arrest report for the June 5 encounter describes Lyles as speaking bizarrely about wanting to "morph into a wolf", about the officers being devils and also members of the Ku Klux Klan.

Florida Carroll, a relative of the victim, cries into her phone at the scene of a police shooting at the Brettler Family Place Apartments at Magnuson Park, Sunday June 18, 2017, in Seattle. "Get back!" and shots were fired.

On the audio recording the officers are heard discussed a "safety caution" about the address stemming from the previous incident.

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The recording then jumps to the initial conversation between Lyles and the officers in her home.

The shooting is being reviewed by the Seattle Police Department's Force Investigation Team, and its Office of Professional Accountability.

Seattle Police has significantly increased their crisis intervention training, and is at "the forefront of training", according to O'Toole.

It is unclear at this time if the three children present witnessed the shooting, but they are unharmed and being cared for by other family members.

Lyles was black, and Isabell said he's frustrated with police killing black people across the country. Lyles can be heard saying, before the audio becomes silent and, at times, indiscernible. That comment led the other officer to ask his partner if there is a "mental precaution on her", a reference to Lyles's mental health issues.

Seattle's Mayor Ed Murray said the incident was a "tragedy for all involved and will be fully investigated".

"There is no question that the Seattle police department could have and should have used de-escalation tactics, instead of shooting first and asking questions later", wrote Kristin Rowe-Finkeiner, Seattle-based director and CEO of MomsRising.


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