The body of a New Haven police officer killed while motorcycling in South Carolina over Memorial Day weekend is back home in the Elm City.
"We lost a good man, a really good man; not just a police officer, a good man," New Haven Police Chief Anthony Campbell said.
Douglas had been on vacation in Myrtle Beach over the holiday weekend and was riding a motorcycle when somehow he crashed.
"They notified us that one of our officers -- they found his identification on him -- had been involved in a serious motorcycle accident," Campbell said about receiving word about the incident.
Douglas had come up the ranks at the New Haven police department under Campbell's command. All of that promise, Campbell said, was suddenly taken away on Saturday morning.
"He had so many dreams and aspirations, so it was just really heart-wrenching to get that news," Campbell said.
Campbell, along with Mayor Toni Harp, went to police headquarters for the start of third shift on Saturday night, which was Douglas’ shift, to console fellow officers.
"Many of them were crying during line-up and we told them that we may have a difficult job when we have to put our emotions aside, but this is not one of those times. It's OK if you need to cry. It's OK if you need to grieve," Campbell said.
On Tuesday night, Officer Douglas’ body was flown from South Carolina to Bradley International Airport and then escorted by police motorcade back to New Haven.
The 31-year-old is survived by his mother, father, three brothers and his girlfriend, who Campbell said Douglas had planned to marry.
Campbell said a funeral for Officer Douglas will be held in New Haven on Monday. Details about the services will be made public soon.
"We have to lean on one another to get through this," Campbell said. "We have to support his family and we have to remember that we are a family."