Former Raleigh Police Officer Brian Sjostedt was one of three people who died Friday night in a plane crash in Franklin County, according to a statement from the Raleigh Police Department.
Franklin County Sheriff Kent Winstead said a homeowner near the airport on Clifton Pond Road heard a loud boom and thought a plane had gone down.
Crews on ATVs searched the pond nearby and found the plane in the pond. A boat was sent to the scene to investigate.
Officials said Saturday afternoon a man and two women who were in the plane died in the incident, which happened southwest of the airport in Louisburg.
The plane left Triangle North Executive Airport in Louisburg around 7:20 p.m. Friday heading to Hilton Head, South Carolina.
The plane wreckage could be seen in the daylight Saturday, partially submerged in water. The plane had been pulled near the shore of the body of water and was ripped and heavily damaged.
The debris field was scattered. It called the operation a recovery effort.
The Federal Aviation Administration said the plane is a Cessna C-172 and that it crashed shortly after taking off from the Triangle North Executive Airport in Louisburg.
The FAA is at the scene investigating the crash.
The names of the two women on the plane have not been released, pending notification of next of kin.
Sjostedt served on the Raleigh Police Department from 1998 to 2005.
“We extend our deepest sympathies and heartfelt condolences to his family, friends, and loved ones during this most difficult time,” Raleigh Police said in a statement.