Charleena Lyles loved her children, dancing and Fourth of July, says brother of woman killed by Seattle police

The woman fatally shot by two officers Sunday enjoyed family barbecues, wrote poetry and as a mother of four was, “Doing it on her own,” her brother said.

One thing that made Charleena Lyles special was the fun-loving way she danced.

“She was so animated,” said her brother, Domico Jones, struggling to paint a picture with words and almost chuckling as he recalled Lyles moving to a hip-hop beat.

“She was a goofy one. You’d have to see it. It’s something I’ll never forget.”

Charleena Lyles shooting

Some other things he’ll remember about her: She looked forward to Fourth of July and family barbecues. She didn’t know how to drive, but she knew how to rap. She wrote poetry “that would touch hearts.” And she loved her four children.

The 30-year-old was short and slight, weighing less than 100 pounds. That might be what confuses Jones most about his sister’s death Sunday at the hands of police.

“She was nobody that you would ever think would be intimidating to a police officer,” he said the day after two officers fatally shot Lyles in her Northeast Seattle apartment.

They were responding to her report of an attempted burglary, and police say she displayed a knife. Three of her children were in the home, and she was pregnant, relatives said.

Family members were scheduled to meet with an attorney Monday evening, Jones said. They have said they believe race was a factor — Lyles was African American, while the two officers are white.

“We definitely need all the answers we can get,” the 25-year-old brother said. “I’m lost.”

Reared south of Seattle, Lyles had a hard childhood. She grew up around drugs and “had to go through times,” Jones said. Her mother died when she was a teenager, so she and her siblings relied on each other.

“She tried to do as much as she could,” Jones said. “She’d do anything for me.”

Despite their troubles, the siblings enjoyed good times. Jones…

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