Tacoma Police Department Officer Reginald Jake Gutierrez Murdered in the Line of Duty
Officer Jake Gutierrez Was Murdered Wednesday Night
Tacoma, WA – Tacoma Police Department Officer Reginald “Jake” Gutierrez was murdered in the line of duty on Wednesday. He was shot and killed after responding to a domestic disturbance at a home in the 400 block of East 52nd St. TPD Officer Gutierrez was 45 years old. He is survived by his children and his fiancee.
A witness to Wednesday’s shooting of Tacoma Police Department Officer Gutierrez said he sacrificed himself to save his partner and the wife of the man who opened fire. This witness said the officer who was killed repeatedly yelled, “Get out! Get out!” to his partner and the woman as shots were fired. She said that she had run downstairs and “heard the shells bouncing off the floor” above her head.
A male suspect inside the home opened fire on the fallen hero, TPD Officer Gutierrez, when he was inside the home. He was shot multiple times. Other law enforcement officers responded and were able to pull Officer Gutierrez from the home. He was transported to Tacoma General Hospital, where he died after surgery around 9 p.m. last night. The suspect barricaded himself in the home, using two children as shields, and a stand-off began that lasted overnight. SWAT Officers were able to get one child away from the suspect. The suspect was using another child as a shield when the suspect was shot and killed by a SWAT sniper. The children were not injured.
Tacoma Police Department Officer Gutierrez had served with the TPD for 17 years. According to Tacoma PD Chief Don Ramsdell, in a highly emotional press conference today, Officer Gutierrez “…was a model police officer…” who “was highly dedicated to his profession, …and highly dedicated to his community. He demonstrated that every day that he came to work.” Residents of the East side where Officer Gutierrez was assigned praised his ability to defuse situations and his work to make their neighborhood safer.
There was a large police presence outside Tacoma General Hospital last night including the Honor Guard. A procession of law enforcement officers escorted the fallen Officer when he was transported from Tacoma General Hospital to the Medical Examiner’s Office.
Washington Governor Jay Inslee said in a statement that TPD Officer Gutierrez’s death was a reminder of the sacrifice that law enforcement makes every day. He said that “all of Washington grieves with Tacoma, which tonight lost one of their finest.” A memorial outside of the Tacoma PD is continuing to grow, with flowers and other mementos left in memory of the fallen hero.
One vigil was held at 5 PM Thursday at the Tacoma PD Substation, 400 E 56th St, and a second vigil was planned for Thursday night at 8 PM at Sheridan Elementary School, 5317 McKinley Avenue E. The Officer Jake Gutierrez Memorial Fund has been set up for public donations which can be made at any Wells Fargo location.
Thank you, Officer Gutierrez, for your service, and for your bravery, courage, and dedication. Our prayers are with your family and with your blue family. Godspeed, sir, we have the watch from here.
Officer Jake Gutierrez, your life mattered.
Feel free to share any words for this hero on Facebook or in the comments below.