Daytona Beach man, 25, shot to death in car; result of drug deal gone bad

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(Courtesy photos) Lekeefe D. Lee, 25, of Daytona Beach, shown here far left, was found shot to death Friday night inside his car that had crashed into a FPL pole in the 700 block of Magnolia Avenue. Click on the attachment to read the police report, which indicates Lee, who was armed, was fleeing after ripping off the alleged gunman, 26-year-old Emanuel Laboy Rivera,  of $900 worth of pot.

DAYTONA BEACH -- In what Daytona Beach police are describing as a  drug deal gone bad, a 25-year-old city man was found shot to death in his car Friday night, having crashed into a pole after being shot two blocks away on Magnolia Avenue.

The gunman turned himself in and was charged with felony drug offenses, but police did not charge him in the homicide while their investigation continues.because he may have been defending himself.

Responding cops found LeKeefe D. Lee slumped in his car, having suffered a gunshot wound to the to the right side of his body below the armpit, apparently crashing the vehicle after being shot. Lee was pronounced dead at the scene inside the car.

"The vehicle was traveling west on Magnolia Avenue (when it hit an) FPL pole on the south side of the street and then veered across the roadway and came to rest striking a tree on the north side of the street, police spokesman Jimmy Flynt said. "It appears the victim died because of the gunshot; the autopsy will be performed on Monday. The investigation is ongoing ."

The alleged gunman, Emanuel Laboy Rivera, 26, of 572 Magnolia Ave., turned himself in at police headquarters and voluntarily spoke with detectives, according to a police report.

Rivera, a known dealer who previously sold drugs to Lee, said Lee had come to his home to purchase 3 ounces of marijuana for $900, but didn't have cash on him so he left behind his own handgun as collateral and left with 2 ounces of pot, according to the police report. When Lee returned a half hour later, they got into an argument during which Lee grabbed his own gun back along with  the rest of the pot without paying for the drugs.The argument continued outside and as Lee was trying to get away in his car, Rivera fired a single shot at him, the report states.

The charging affidavit doesn't mention anything specifically about self defense, but the detectives noted in the report that their interview with Rivera was recorded and their could be additional information left out of the report, which was released by e-mail to Volusianews.net and other media outlets just before 2:30 a.m.

Though Rivera was not charged in the homicide, he was jailed on two felony counts of delivery of drugs and use of a gun in the commission of a felony.

Rivera has prior arrests for illicit drug activity, but no convictions. Lee also has prior drug arrests, but it's uncertain whether he has any convictions.

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Short Bio

Henry Frederick is publisher of Headline Surfer®, the award-winning 24/7 internet news outlet covering the Daytona Beach-Sanford-Orlando metro area via HeadlineSurfer.com since 2008. A longtime cops & courts reporter focused on breaking news & investigative reporting, Frederick is among the Sunshine State's most prolific daily news reporters, having amassed close to a hundred award-winning byline stories nearly evenly split in print and digital platforms. Frederick earned his Master of Arts in New Media Journalism with academic honors from Full Sail University in Winter Park in February 2019. He was a metro reporter with the Daytona Beach News-Journal for nearly a decade and then served as a city editor for the Taunton Daily Gazette in Taunton, Mass, while maintaining a residence in Central Florida. Prior to moving to Florida, Frederick was a metro reporter for the Rockland Journal-News in West Nyack, NY, for seven years. Headline Surfer was named the Sunshine State's top internet news site by the Florida Press Club in 2018.