This is a heartbreaking story. A 30-year-old mother, who called police due to a burglary, ended up being shot and killed in front of her children. Sending our prayers to Charleena Lyles and her family.
Police in Seattle shot and killed a 30-year-old woman, who family members said was pregnant, on Sunday after she called 911 about a possible burglary — and now an investigation is underway into the officers' use of force.
Family members said Lyles had experienced mental health problems in the last year and that she was several months pregnant, which BuzzFeed News couldn't immediately confirm. Family members also said they believe race was a factor in the incident — Lyles was black, and the two police officers who shot her were white.
In a video posted by the Seattle Times, a woman who identified herself as Lyles' sister can be seen screaming into the camera distraught, telling the reporters that deadly force was not needed in the situation.
"She's this fucking tall," Monika Williams said, placing her hand below her head. "There's no reason for her to be shot, in front of her babies!" Williams said, adding later that the officers could have tased Lyles instead.
Seattle police confirmed that two boys and one girl, aged 11, 4, and 1, were in the apartment at the time of the shooting, and have since been given over to family members.
Audio taken from the officer's dashcam was released by police on Monday morning. The department, in a statement, said it believes "transparency throughout the investigation of deadly force incidents is essential to maintaining public trust."
In the audio, officers can be heard talking about responding to the burglary call in tandem because of "hazard information" regarding Lyles in the system, Det. Mark Jamieson said.
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