A woman was shot dead by police outside a shelter for mentally ill and drug-addicted homeless women on East 45th Street last night. The unidentified woman was reportedly wielding an ornamental knife, and lunged at two NYPD officers after refusing repeated orders to drop it, police sources tell the Daily News. One woman who lives above the shelter says the trouble began because of an argument between the woman and her girlfriend. "One of the women grabbed a knife," one Betty Saunders tells the tabloid. "She ended up in the middle of the street. The police said, 'Please put the knife down.' She didn't. They shot her five times."

Two officers responded to the New Providence Women's Shelter near Second Avenue around 8:30 p.m. By then the 57-year-old woman was out on the street armed with two knives, the Wall Street Journal reports, and was brandishing one over her head. After reportedly advancing on the officers, she was shot multiple times in the torso, and pronounced dead on arrival at Bellevue Hospital. Police believe she was living at the shelter.

"She never bothered nobody," one local tells NY1. "But she had an argument when I went to the movies. I saw her arguing earlier on 43rd Street with her girlfriend, on the phone. And when I came back from the movie theater, she told me that they shot her and everything, so I was like what the hell is going on?"