A police officer shot a woman in a parking lot in Arlington Tuesday morning. The woman reportedly had a knife. (Photo: Everett Police Dept.)

Arlington officer shoots girl, 17, who reportedly had knife

ARLINGTON — Police shot a 17-year-old girl who reportedly was armed with a knife early Tuesday morning.

She was listed in critical condition in intensive care at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.

The officers received a call about a disturbance shortly before 5 a.m. They found a couple arguing in a gravel parking lot in the 500 block of North Olympic Avenue, said Aaron Snell, an Everett police officer and spokesman for the Snohomish County Multiple Agency Response Team.

Police tried to separate the pair. The girl reportedly had a knife, Snell said.

Two Arlington police officers fired their guns.

The girl was taken to the hospital in a medical helicopter.

A knife was found at the scene, Snell said.

Detectives later determined the girl and the young man — his age wasn’t immediately available — were dating, Snell said.

Lisa Marie Beltjens, 38, said she is a family friend of the girl. She learned about the shooting Tuesday morning.

Beltjens grabbed the first thing she saw — a large plastic container lid — and wrote on it with blue marker.

“Demand justice. APD shot a child,” she wrote. She held the makeshift sign as she and two others stood on a street corner near the Arlington Police Department.

Beltjens said the girl who was shot is intelligent and takes classes at Edmonds Community College through Running Start.

“But at 17, we’re not all in our right mind if we’re having a fight with our boyfriend,” Beltjens said.

The two officers who opened fire have been placed on administrative duty, in keeping with policy. One officer has been with the Arlington Police Department for 12 years. The other officer joined two years ago.

North Olympic Avenue was closed between Division Street and E. Fifth Avenue for several hours.

It was the fourth officer-involved shooting in the county since December. Investigations are ongoing into a death on Highway 99 in Lynnwood on Jan. 30 and another in Everett on Dec. 17. Both those shootings involved Lynnwood officers.

On Feb. 9, a man was fatally shot by a Lake Stevens officer. The man, 33, reportedly had called 911 and said that he wanted “to kill cops.”

SMART detectives are drawn from throughout the county to investigate when police use fatal force. Their completed cases are forwarded to county prosecutors, who conduct a legal analysis of whether the use of force was justified. That process often takes up to a year.

Caitlin Tompkins: 425-339-3192; ctompkins@heraldnet.com

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