Witness Believes Police Entered Wrong Apartment in Fatal Airman Shooting Case

Posted on May 9, 2024 by Staff reports


The Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a fatal officer involved shooting of an airman stationed at Hurlburt Field that took place after a deputy made contact with an armed individual at an apartment off Racetrack Road late Friday afternoon.

Cops responded to 319 Racetrack Road around 4:30 p.m. in reference to a call about a disturbance in progress.

Civil rights attorney Ben Crump says Senior Airman Roger Fortsman, 23, was Facetiming with an unnamed female when the incident occurred.  

Per Crump, the female alleges Fortsman was alone inside his apartment when he heard a knock but received no reply after asking who was there; subsequently, he retrieved a legally owned firearm and was shot six times after police entered his apartment and saw he was armed.

“The circumstances surrounding Roger’s death raise serious questions that demand immediate answers from authorities, especially considering the alarming witness statement that the police entered the wrong apartment,” stated Crump.

Fortsman was taken to an area hospital where he succumbed to his injuries.

No deputies were injured, per OCSO, which stated, “Per standard protocol the deputy is placed on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of a formal investigation and administrative review.”

Hurlburt Field said Fortson was assigned to the 4th Special Operations Squadron. He entered active duty on Nov. 19, 2019. “The 1st Special Operations Wing’s priorities are providing casualty affairs service to the family, supporting the squadron during this tragic time, and ensuring resources are available for all who are impacted,” per base officials.