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Seattle Police Department

A state senator from Seattle is renewing his call to rewrite Washington’s police deadly force law. Democrat David Frockt represents the legislative district where Seattle police shot and killed Charleena Lyles, a pregnant mother of four on Sunday.

Jenny Henderson, Seattle mental health counselor
KUOW: Kara McDermott

The African American community in Seattle is in shock after city police shot and killed 30-year-old Charleena Lyles. Jenny Henderson is a therapist in Seattle whose clientele is mostly black. She tells Kim Malcolm that Lyles' mental illness was not taken into account. 

Candles surround a photograph of Charleena Lyles after a vigil was held at Solid Ground Brettler Family Place on Tuesday, June 19, 2017, in Seattle, Washington.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Reporter Patricia Murphy talks to Bill Radke about the fatal police shooting of 30-year-old Charleena Lyles that happened in her apartment near Magnuson Park Sunday morning. 

KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Seattle police officers are heard on an audio tape yelling “Get back! Get back!” before firing a volley of shots that killed a woman who had called in a burglary.

Charleena Lyles was shot Sunday morning. Police said she brandished a knife. But family members say police knew Lyles had mental health issues.

Dozens gathered Sunday evening, June 18, 2017, for a vigil held for Charleena Lyles, who was shot to death by Seattle police.
KUOW Photo/Patricia Murphy

Dozens of people gathered at a vigil last night for Charleena Lyles, a mother of four who was shot by Seattle Police Sunday morning.

The shooting occurred in a Solid Ground housing complex for formerly homeless families in the Sand Point neighborhood shortly after 10 a.m.

Seattle Police Officer Louis Chan, center, talks with a man in Ballard about his erratic and threatening behavior. Chan is partnered with a social worker to help deescalate volatile situations.
KUOW Photo/Kara McDermott

If people want to take pictures or video of police making an arrest they have the legal authority to do so in Seattle. The Seattle City Council passed a so-called "Public Safety Bill of Rights" on Monday.

Number of shots fired in Seattle in 2017 is at a five-year high. Despite this, police officials say the violent crime rate is lower than it was a few years ago.
Seattle Police Department

Seattle Police said the number of shots fired in the city in 2017 is at a five-year high. Department officials briefed the City Council this week about gun violence.

Lorena Gonzalez at her election night party on Nov. 3, 2015, in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Kara McDermott

Jeannie Yandel talks to Seattle City Councilmember Lorena Gonzalez about the legislation the City Council passed that will increase civilian oversight of the Seattle Police Department. 

Seattle police officers observe marchers moving down 4th Avenue during the Black Lives Matter rally in Seattle on Saturday.
KUOW Photo/Daniel Berman

The Seattle City Council has unanimously passed a measure to put civilians in charge of police oversight. It comes five years after a federal judge called attention to excessive force and biased policing within the Seattle Police Department.

A march protesting the Seattle police shooting of Che Taylor on Feb. 21, 2016 moves through downtown Seattle on Feb. 25, 2016.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Seattle Police reforms that are five years in the making took a big step forward this week. A City Council committee approved a measure to put civilians in charge of police oversight.

Recruits from around the region, including Seattle Police Department, on the first day at the police academy.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

After years of work, the Seattle City Council is finally going to vote on police accountability legislation.

A council committee is expected to vote on the bill Thursday and it's expected to go to the full council next week.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) vehicle in downtown Seattle
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Kim Malcolm talks with reporter George Joseph about how federal immigration officials are able to directly access regional law enforcement databases, including Law Enforcement Information Exchange Northwest, which contains data from the Seattle Police Department.

bikes in Seattle
Flickr Photo/papahazama

When bikes are stolen, there’s no easy systematic way of keeping track. If they are found, returning them to the owner can be difficult.

Just ask ­­­­Christopher Schumaker, a bicycle deliveryman.


A bullet fired at a Seattle police officer is removed from her bulletproof vest.
Seattle Police Department

Dramatic Seattle Police dash-cam video shows a robbery suspect running into a loading dock followed closely by two police officers – and then a series of shots.

The suspect was killed, and the officers hit with bullets.

The scene of a shooting in downtown Seattle on Thursday afternoon.
Courtesy of Erin Cline

Three Seattle Police officers were shot on Thursday afternoon after a robbery at a 7-Eleven convenience store in downtown Seattle. One of the three suspects they were chasing died from injuries sustained during the chase.

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KUOW Photo/Ashley Ahearn

Seattle reached a major milestone in its police reform efforts Thursday.

A federal monitor has found the overall use of force in the Seattle Police Department is down.

Seattle officials say they will continue to reform the police department, despite the federal government's changing law enforcement priorities.

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions said this week that his office will review existing reforms to ensure they meet the Trump Administration's goals. Those include improving officer safety and morale. That widespread review could include Seattle, which has been under a federal consent decree for five years to improve its police department.

Bill Radke talks with Officer Kevin Stuckey, head of the Seattle Police Officers' Guild, about U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions' announcement of a wide-reaching review of federal consent decrees with police departments around the country.

The Seattle Police Department has been under a federal consent decree since 2012, after the Department of Justice found a pattern of excessive use of force in policing. 

Dan Satterberg (left), Andre Tayor (brother of Che Taylor who was fatally shot by police), and former SPD Chief Norm Stamper at a community meeting.
KUOW Photo/Amy Radil

Two Seattle police officers who shot and killed a 47-year-old African-American man last year will not face criminal charges.

Che Taylor's family called the decision disappointing. 

King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg said Tuesday that the officers acted within the scope of the law.

A march protesting the Seattle police shooting of Che Taylor on Feb. 21, 2016 moves through downtown Seattle on Feb. 25, 2016.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Under the Trump administration, the Justice Department will reduce its emphasis on investigating and suing police departments. Justice officials under President Barack Obama called the Seattle Police Department a success story for this process. 

People involved in Seattle's 2012 consent decree have mixed feelings about the new direction. 

Crosscut reporter David Kroman.
KUOW Photo/Kara McDermott

Bill Radke speaks with Crosscut city reporter David Kroman about the recent move by the City Council to equip Seattle's officers with body cameras by the end of 2017. Kroman says that multiple groups are concerned about privacy issues, decreased accountability for officers, and the possibility that footage could be used to identify undocumented immigrants. 

In this March 12, 2015, file photo, Seattle police officer Debra Pelich, right, wears a video camera on her eyeglasses as she talks with Alex Legesse before a small community gathering in Seattle.
AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File

Seattle's bike cops wear body cameras, and now all officers will start wearing them. The Seattle City Council approved a measure Tuesday to purchase the cameras this year.

Even after a delay, the full rollout is facing some opposition.

Assistant Chief Perry Tarrant of the Seattle Police Department.
City of Seattle

Perry Tarrant wants young African Americans to know their rights in interactions with police.

But Tarrant, assistant chief at the Seattle Police Department, told KUOW’s Emily Fox that just as important is knowing what to do if you think you’ve been wronged by the police.


Crimes against LGBTQ people are among the most reported hate-crimes in Seattle. In the second half of 2016, 22 crimes were reported against gay, lesbian, or transgender people.

With the support of police, a gay man who was recently targeted is speaking out. His story is having a broader impact than he anticipated.

Dan Satterberg (left), Andre Tayor (brother of Che Taylor who was fatally shot by police), and former SPD Chief Norm Stamper at a community meeting.
KUOW Photo/Amy Radil

Friday marked the end of the inquest into the fatal police shooting of Che Taylor in Seattle’s Wedgwood neighborhood last year. In the fact-finding hearings, the eight-person jury found that Taylor posed a threat to the officers involved in the shooting.


Seattle is a step closer to more civilian oversight of the city's police department.

Mayor Ed Murray announced Wednesday that long-awaited police accountability legislation is ready to go before the City Council. 

Dan Satterberg (left), Andre Tayor (brother of Che Taylor who was fatally shot by police), and former SPD Chief Norm Stamper at a community meeting.
KUOW Photo/Amy Radil

An inquest is scheduled to get underway at the King County Courthouse this week in the death of Che Taylor. In February 2016, Taylor was shot by Seattle police in the Wedgwood neighborhood. Now a jury will hear more facts of the case.

In this March 12, 2015, file photo, Seattle police officer Debra Pelich, right, wears a video camera on her eyeglasses as she talks with Alex Legesse before a small community gathering in Seattle.
AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File

On Thursday, a dozen Seattle police officers strapped on body cameras for the first time.

By the end of 2017, 850 officers will be using them. 

The Seattle Police Department will soon have a bigger presence in neighborhoods. Community members will be trained to handle non-emergency incidents. They will be part of the Community Service Officer program, which the city is bringing back to Seattle after a 12 year hiatus.

Mina Sultana, co-president of the Muslim Student Association at the UW, advises all Muslim students to walk with a buddy on and off campus and 'be extra cautious of their surroundings.'
KUOW PHOTO/DAVID HYDE

The 911 call came in two days after the presidential election from the security guard at Nathan Hale High School in Seattle.  He was reporting a possible hate crime.  

The target was a 16-year-old student who was on her way to school when a man she did not know allegedly grabbed her by the arm and refused to let her go. 


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