Florida Starbucks customer shot dead after confronting man who allegedly cut him off in drive-thru

Wayne K. Roustan, South Florida Sun-Sentinel
·3 min read

One man was shot dead and a teenager is facing a murder charge after a dispute at a Starbucks drive-thru in Lake Worth Beach.

Witnesses said Justin Ray Boersma’s Nissan Versa cut in front of a truck in the drive-thru lane of the coffee shop, according to an arrest report.

A man got out of the pickup truck, walked up to Boersma’s vehicle and banged on the driver’s side window and then ripped the door handle off. The man then started walking back to his pickup.

That’s when Boersma, 19, shot the man and drove off, the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office said.

Boersma later told detectives he, his girlfriend, their infant child, and another friend were in the Nissan Versa when the man attacked. Boersma said his girlfriend was screaming “We have a baby in the car!” the whole time, according to the arrest report.

As the man — identified as 31-year-old Samuel Joseph Rossetti — walked back to the black Chevrolet Silverado, Boersma armed himself with a gun, got out of the Versa, and fired three shots. He told detectives he was afraid for the safety of his girlfriend and child and didn’t know if that man was going for a weapon in the truck. Boersma admitted he never saw a weapon, the report stated.

The shooting happened about noon Wednesday at 127 N. Dixie Hwy., just north of Lucerne Avenue in downtown Lake Worth.

Deputies and a good Samaritan with medical training administered CPR until help arrived. Rossetti was taken to St. Mary’s Medical Center where he was pronounced dead about an hour later.

Surveillance video from a neighboring business recorded the confrontation.

Witnesses were able to get the Versa’s license plate number. It struck another car as it drove off, they said. Boersma later claimed he left the scene to call a lawyer and surrender, detectives said.

Deputies traced the tag to a house in the 1000 block of North L Street, about 10 blocks north of the shooting scene. As they conducted surveillance, deputies said a man was seen using a tarp to cover the Versa parked in the driveway. It was recorded on video by a sheriff’s office drone hovering over the property.

A short time later, several people left the house, got into a Nissan Sentra, and drove away. A sheriff’s helicopter followed them until deputies made a traffic stop. They searched the Sentra and found a handgun in a plastic bag under a child’s car seat, the report stated.

The man who was driving the Sentra told deputies the gun was not his and he knew nothing about it. The gun was the same caliber as the 9mm shell casings found at the scene of the shooting. It was collected as evidence, investigators said.

Justin Boersma, his girlfriend, the child, and two others were also in the Sentra. Two passengers who were in the pickup truck with Rossetti were brought to the scene of the traffic stop. They identified Justin Boersma as the shooter, records show.

Justin Boersma is charged with first-degree murder and firing a weapon in public. He remains in the Palm Beach County Jail without bond.

A woman reached at the Boersma phone number declined to comment on the case citing her lawyer’s advice. Efforts to reach the Rossetti family were unsuccessful.

Wayne K. Roustan can be reached at wkroustan@sunsentinel.com or 561-379-6119 or on Twitter @WayneRoustan