In mid-afternoon Saturday (Aug. 22), Alan Presley Jr., 32, shot Joshua Lemaster, firing several rounds and wounding him in the stomach. The two had been arguing when the shooting took place at 5E Hargrove Lane, one of the dozens of businesses at the Palm Coast Commercial and Industrial Center off the west end of Hargrove Grade.
Reports to 911 were that five shots had been fired. Lemaster was airlifted to Halifax hospital in Daytona Beach and was expected to survive. Presley stayed near the scene. The sheriff’s office described him as “cooperative” after the shooting, which was witnessed by at least two Palm Coast residents–a 48-year-old and a 39-year-old, both men.
Presley was not arrested. He was wearing a ball cap, glasses and no shirt as he stood next to a 2-door Kia parked about 50 to 55 yards away, in Building D in the same cluster of hangar-like buildings. Deputies kept him at gunpoint until he was handcuffed and placed in the back of a a patrol vehicle.
A small firearm and ammunition were located in the front seat of the Kia. Deputies subsequently got a search warrant for the car and the garage where the shooting took place. “The search of the business found four spent shell casings along with THC concentrate, marijuana, and drug paraphernalia,” a sheriff’s release stated, as was a second firearm that had been stolen in Volusia County. “There were conflicting reports as to whether or not Lemaster had brandished a firearm during the argument,” the release states.
Both witnesses to the shooting wrote out statements. No arrests were made because if Presley was acting in self-defense, the state’s Stand Your Ground law could be invoked. Lemaster’s status as a convicted felon who may have illegally been in possession of a firearm is a factor in the investigation, and the initial decision not to make arrests yet.
“There were numerous witnesses to this shooting,” Sheriff Rick Staly said. “At this point, detectives are still piecing together the sequence of events but preliminary information indicates this may be a ‘stand your ground’ case with a convicted felon that illegally had a stolen firearm. More information will be released as the investigation continues.” The investigation is ongoing.
Presley was the subject of a felony criminal mischief complaint in 2006 but the charge was dropped. In September 2018 he faced a domestic battery charge involving his ex-girlfriend, and subsequently was charged with an injunction violation, but the charge was not pursued.
Lemaster has a long criminal history, with his most recent arrest last January, on a felony drug charge–it was dropped–and his first criminal charge as an adult going back to when he was 18 and allegedly defrauded a taxi cab. He was not prosecuted. He’s faced several misdemeanor and felony charges since, including interference with the custody of a minor and, in 2014, discharging a firearm in public (he’d been firing a large-caliber firearm at Saw Mill Estates). Adjudication was withheld in that case.
In 2017, he was charged with statutory rape of a 14-year-old girl when he was 20 and found guilty, resulting in a year’s jail time at the county jail, five years’ probation and a lifetime designation as a sex offender. His probation doesn’t expire until December 2023. He violated his probation in February with a drug possession.