NewsAir force member killed by police in his own home

Air force member killed by police in his own home

Roger Fortson died in the hospital.
Roger Fortson died in the hospital.
Images source: © AP News

7:49 AM EDT, May 9, 2024

In a tragic incident in the United States, police officers mistakenly shot Roger Fortson, a member of the United States Air Force. The error occurred when an officer allegedly confused his apartment, leading to six shots being fired at the 23-year-old airman.

As the AP News agency reported, Roger Fortson was actively serving in the Special Operations Wing at Hurlburt Field in Okaloosa County, Florida. The circumstances leading to this unfortunate event began with police responding to a report of a dispute between a woman and a man. Witnesses stated that at the time, Fortson was engaged in a FaceTime conversation with a woman alone in his apartment. Unaware of the officers at his door, he did not respond to their knocks, as he reportedly did not hear them inquire, “who is there”. When the knocking persisted, he approached to look through the peephole and, seeing no one, decided to arm himself with a legally owned weapon for protection.

It was at this critical moment, as he was reaching for his weapon, that officers allegedly entered the apartment. Upon seeing Fortson armed, a deputy sheriff discharged six shots into his chest. Fortson succumbed to his injuries while being transported to the hospital.
Fortson served with distinction in the 4th Special Operations Squadron as an aviator, participating in special missions. One of his responsibilities included loading guns on the AC-130J Ghostrider aircraft, a key role in his squadron.

The incident has raised significant concerns, particularly whether the officers mistakenly entered the wrong apartment. This theory is supported by Family lawyer Ben Crump, as quoted by, who criticized the law enforcement narrative for falsely suggesting that Fortson posed a threat. "Roger was alone at home and was not causing any disturbances when law enforcement tragically ended his life," stated the lawyer, questioning the consistency of the official account with witness details.

Crump has called for transparency in the investigation of Fortson's death and demands the immediate release of the incident recordings to the family, advocating for justice through platforms like the X service.

Further scrutiny comes in the light of recent evaluations of the sheriff's office's procedures following an incident where a deputy mistakenly fired at a suspect, mistaking an acorn falling on a vehicle roof for gunfire.

This tragic event emphasizes the need for rigorous training and operational protocols to prevent future incidents of mistaken identity and unnecessary loss of life.
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