Man charged 2 months after brother found dead in Plainfield camper

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Plainfield — A Plainfield man has been charged with manslaughter more than two months after his brother was found dead in a camper in Plainfield, police said.

Keith Theodore Coolidge, 37, was charged Friday morning with second-degree manslaughter and first-degree strangulation in connection with the death of his older brother, 47-year-old Keith Calvin Coolidge, according to the Plainfield Police Department.

The younger Coolidge was arrested on a warrant Friday during an appearance at Danielson Superior Court on a violation of protection order charge. He was arraigned on the manslaughter charge and is being held on a $1 million bond.

The elder Coolidge was found dead in a camper on the property where he lived at 75 Community Ave. First responders found several injuries on his body that police say were consistent with an altercation with another person. An autopsy later found that he died from compression of the neck; his death was ruled a homicide due to strangulation, officials said.

A few hours after the body was found, police arrested the deceased man's brother near the Dunkin' Donuts on East Main Street in Central Village on the violation of a protective order charge and he was held on a $250,000 bond, according to Plainfield Capt. Mario A. Arriaga. The younger Coolidge appeared in court on Dec. 20 and also was charged with criminal trespass, police said. The protective order charge did not involve the deceased brother.

An extensive investigation by Plainfield police and the Connecticut State Police Eastern District Major Crime Squad determined that the elder Coolidge had died during an altercation between the brothers.

Keith T. Coolidge has an extensive criminal record, with arrests and convictions dating back to 2004. He has been found guilty on charges ranging from sexual assault to criminal trespass, according to the state's judicial website. He was sentenced to 30 months in prison after being found guilty of unlawful restraint in August 2017.

In March, he was arrested after allegedly "banging" on the windows of a Community Avenue residence while armed with a machete and dressed in camouflage gear and a ski mask, according to the Norwich Bulletin, which originally reported on the incident in March. Police at the time, according to Bulletin reports, had said Coolidge entered the building and made threats to a resident inside. The incident prompted schools and businesses in the area to be locked down. Coolidge later was captured in a wooded area near Oakwood Boulevard, with the help of police K-9s and a department drone. He was charged with second-degree threatening and in July was sentenced to six months in prison.

Day Staff Writer Mary Biekert contributed to this report.

t.hartz@theday.com

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