Joshua LeMaster’s nearly eight years of criminal charges, convictions and avoidance of prison ended today when he was sentenced to seven years in state prison for a series of probation violations, drug sales and weapon possession.
Joshua LeMaster, a Palm Coast resident who’d recently been using a motel room as his address, is only 26 years old. But he’s been facing criminal charges since he was 18, when he was accused to stiffing a cab driver in Flagler Beach in 2013, and soon after that with interfering with the custody of a minor, his first felony charge. Time after time the charges would be dropped or reduced, or adjudication would be withheld–as when he was arrested for firing his shotgun almost two dozen times over a lake where people were fishing. He was 19 then.
The arrests, the charges, the lenient dispositions kept repeating–theft (adjudication withheld), theft again (charge dropped), contributing to the delinquency of a child (dropped), trespassing (a month in jail), forgery, grand theft, counterfeiting, all felonies (all dropped). Then came the March 2016 arrest for statutory rape of a 14-year-old girl, when he was 20. He pleaded guilty to that one in 2018, was declared a sex offender for life, and was sentenced to a rather lenient 364 days at the county jail–one day short of state prison time.
He was also sentenced to five years’ sex-offender probation, which he proceeded to repeatedly violate–possessing or using drugs, consorting with criminals, possessing a firearm, though he’s a felon.
His latest violations were confirmed subsequent to a shooting incident when he was himself shot and wounded at a garage on Hargrove Lane in Palm Coast. Two months after that shooting, LeMaster and his father, Jackie LeMaster, were arrested for using an Econolodge room as a drug den. But his probation-violation report would stretch to many pages, including records of his prior arrests.
Today, LeMaster pleaded before Circuit Judge Terence Perkins. His sex-offender probation was revoked. He was sentenced to seven years in prison on the weapon possession charge and five years (to be served concurrently) on drug charges, including selling pot. But he also gets a year and 24 days’ credit for time already served in jail, and he may be released early after serving 85 percent of his sentence, assuming good behavior. In effect, his 84-month sentence could be shortened to 71 with “gain time,” and to 58, or just under five years, with time already served. He will remain a designated sex offender once released from prison.
“I’m glad to see that he is at least taking some responsibility for his actions,” Sheriff Rick Staly said in a statement. “He has paid a significant price for his bad decisions that will affect him for the rest of his life. I’m glad to see he will be out of this community locked up, at least for a while. I hope he turns his life around so that when he is released he does not repeat his poor choices.”
Long overdue and seems his luck has run out at present. How these career criminal s continue to get off time and again is beyond me. He will have at least 5 plus years to wipe that smile off his face. Good riddance
I hate to say this but some of US will be dead by the time he gets out of prison; which perhaps may be a good thing, because we won’t have to read about his first arrest after getting out of prison.
I would surmise that he will get that smirk removed from his face in prison.
The Sheriff says he hopes the man turns his life around while serving a 7 year sentence in prison. I find that delusional thinking. The story tells a story of a person who has serious issues. It is obvious he needed guidance early on. But the court syst and his community and family either let him down or had no access to help. As a result society has suffered greatly. A sexual predator was living among us , released over and over. The prison system will only teach him to be better at avoiding getting caught. All because we are focused on punishment instead of mental health, teaching those who don’t fit in how to live responsibly in our society and finding group situations with supervision when predilection of sexual predator is obvious. Our system is not working, it is supposed to protect our law abiding citizens and yet offenders have to repeat offend to get the attention of the courts and when thay do rheh are thrown in crowded prisons, warehouse buy the for profit contractors who over charge for caring for them and no focus on rehabilitating those who can be saved. There will always be criminals on all levels of society, working class and white collar. We must change the way we look at the system. If we don’t we will cont to grow the number of criminals in our society.
Only Me says
After reading this article and all the breaks the Flagler County judges gave this criminal you can see he didn’t learn his lesson and good luck thinking he will learn his lesson when he is released from prison.
Sounds like his father needs to be locked up with them because they are both serial criminals.
Wake up Flagler County Courts and stop giving these criminals so many breaks.
Concerned Citizen says
Light Sentence Perkins is at it again.
He has a soft spot in his heart for pedos and career criminals. It really reflects in the way he deviates from sentencing guidelines. This guy got off extremely light considering he already had a past. And was on probation.
Another farcical attempt at justice in Flagler County.
We need new judges. One that will actually do their jobs. And not just hand out convienient sentences to clear their dockets.