‘I can’t breathe:’ Girlfriend of airman shot to death by Florida deputies reveals his last moments

According to the OCSO, Fortson brandished a gun and the deputy shot him.

ATLANTA — The girlfriend of a Georgia Airman who was shot and killed by deputies in Florida said he deserves justice.

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Air Force Senior Airman Roger Fortson’s casket arrived at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport on Tuesday afternoon.

Channel 2′s Candace McCowan was in downtown Atlanta, where she talked to Fortson’s girlfriend on Wednesday.

She’s shaken and doesn’t want to be identified, but said it’s important to tell the world what Fortson was saying the moments before he was shot to death.


The 22-year-old, who lives in metro Atlanta, was on the phone with Fortson when there was a knock on the door.

“We heard a knock, and he said, ‘Who is it?’ He said, “Nobody comes up to my house, I don’t know who that could be,’” she said.

Deputies were responding to a disturbance in process call on May 3 in Fort Walton Beach.

“Then the knock gets aggressive, and he says, ‘I’m going to grab my gun because I don’t know who that is. He asked who it was louder,” she said. “What I thought was... It was gunshots. That’s when I heard the officer then identify himself and says, ‘Put the gun down. And Roger says, ‘Ok, ok.’”

She said she then heard what she believes were his last conscious moments.

“Roger says, ‘I can’t breathe. I can’t breathe.’ He calls out three gunshots to the chest and three to the forearm,” she said. “I didn’t know what to do. There was nothing I could do.”

She said she is still hanging on to a final moment with him on her doorbell camera just days before when Fortson left her home in Atlanta. He told her he loved her, and she repeated it back to him.

“We talked every day. We went from seeing each other once a month to pretty much every weekend,” she said.

She said she knows Forston would want the truth to come out.