The East Hartford police officer who died today at Hartford Hospital of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head was a South Windsor resident, according to South Windsor Deputy Chief of Police Richard Riggs.
Officer Paul Buchanan was found around 9 a.m. at the East Hartford public safety building, according to a police statement from the East Hartford police department.
He later died of his injuries at Hartford Hospital, police said.
The East Hartford police and the Connecticut state police are investigating the shooting, police said.
Buchanan was a veteran of the department who served since 1989, police said.
"Officer Paul Buchanan’s career included working in the Patrol Division as a Field Training Officer, a Community Outreach Officer, and a Fleet and Scheduling Officer," the statement said. "He also worked in the Criminal Investigations Division as an Investigator.
"Officer Paul Buchanan was a highly decorated Police Officer who had two life saving awards, a meritorious service award, and several letters of commendation.
"Our thoughts and prayers go out to Officer Paul Buchanan’s family and friends during this tragic time."
South Windsor Volunteer Fire Department Chief Kevin Cooney worked with Buchanan at the East Hartford police department for seven years.
“We were hired the same year, he was an officer, I was a dispatcher," Cooney said. “I remember him as a very devoted family man. At the time, he had two young sons. He was devoted to his wife and two young sons.”
Cooney said that he and Buchanan would talk frequently about South Windsor, the town in which they lived.
Efforts to reach the East Hartford police department were unsuccessful.