25-year-old Daytona Beach police officer dies after collapsing during training

Officer Thomas Coulter started May 14 with Daytona Beach PD

By Emilee Speck - Digital journalist

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - A 25-year-old rookie Daytona Beach police officer died Monday after collapsing during physical training Friday, Daytona Beach Police Chief Craig Capri said.

Officer Thomas Coulter and 23 other new police officers were doing what the chief described as “very light" physical training last Monday when Coulter collapsed. The trainees had just started a session of jogging and doing pushups around 8 a.m. when Coulter collapsed.

Capri said Coulter was taken to Halifax Hospital where his outlook seemed good.

“I just don’t understand. They told us he was going to be OK, initially," Capri said. “I’m hoping the autopsy will show us what happened."

Officer Thomas Coulter

There was no indication of previous health issues and Coulter passed every test to become a police officer, Capri said.

“Sometimes things just happen. You don’t know the reason why," Capri said. "A lot of it is in God’s hand.”

The chief said Coulter had achieved his lifelong goal of becoming a Daytona Beach police officer.

“He had to fight hard to get that,” Capri said. “He knew he made it. He obtained his goals.”

Coulter had recently married his high school sweetheart, Capri said.

The other trainees were offered counseling and given Monday off from training.

“He’ll always be a part of this police department," Capri said.

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