Street named after fallen Tacoma police officer Jake Gutierrez

A street in Tacoma now bears the name of a police officer killed in the line of duty.

TACOMA, Wash. — A street that runs past a Tacoma Police Department substation in Stewart Heights Park is named Reginald Gutierrez Lane, after one of Tacoma’s fallen officers.

The name is honoring Officer Reginald "Jake" Gutierrez, who was fatally shot on Nov. 30, 2016, several blocks north of the park while responding to a domestic violence call.

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He was based at the substation and fellow officers say he often interacted with children who played in the park.

Police said the incident that led to the officer’s death started when animal control officers were working near a house in Tacoma’s Eastside neighborhood. They were approached by a woman who said her husband had locked her out and taken her phone.

The officers called police.

Gutierrez and his partner went inside the home. As Gutierrez reached the top of the stairs in attempt to speak with the man, he was shot, Tacoma Police Chief Tom Ramsdell said.

Gutierrez later died from his injuries.

Gutierrez was a model police officer with children and a fiancé, Tacoma Chief Don Ramsdell said.

The new street sign was unveiled on Wednesday, where the lane meets East 56th Street.


Speakers for the public dedication included Tacoma Mayor Marilyn Strickland, Park Board President Andrea Smith, and a member of Officer Gutierrez's family. Officer Loretta Cool, a spokeswoman for the Tacoma Police Department, will act as master of ceremonies.

Ramsdell proposed the name to the Metro Parks Tacoma Board of Commissioners during its April 24 meeting, and the board voted 5-0 to approve.

"The board was moved," said Park Board President Andrea Smith. "It was a joyful sadness that we were able to do something to honor Officer Gutierrez."