‘I just don’t believe it:’ Friends mourn man found shot to death in West Palm


Victor Joseph’s friends are struggling to believe it was really his body found Friday on a West Palm Beach sidewalk. 

They don’t understand why anyone would shoot their loyal “Tae,” a 22-year-old with an infectious laugh. 

“I don’t even know why a person would have beef with him,” said Joseph’s friend, 23-year-old Clishay Stewart. “I don’t even know why he was in West Palm Beach.”

Joseph was living in North Lauderdale, records show, and working at a Popeyes near Miami, Stewart said. He messaged Stewart on Friday evening to see if she wanted to meet up in Lake Worth. She couldn’t, she said. She was going to a movie in Royal Palm Beach.

West Palm Beach police found Joseph’s body at about 11 p.m. Friday in the 400 block of Eighth Street near Dixie Highway. More than 12 hours later, they hadn’t identified the man, a sergeant said. 

 

As of Wednesday, police had not released any suspect information or a potential motive in Joseph’s killing, the ninth of 10 reported homicides in the city since January. 

“I (saw) so much good in him,” said Joseph’s longtime friend Rosa Purifory. “This feels so unfair.”

News about Joseph’s killing spread Sunday on Facebook. That’s how Stewart found out about the death of her friend of nearly eight years. 

“I just don’t believe it,” Stewart said Tuesday. Joseph’s Facebook page is flooded with messages of similar disbelief. 

He was fiercely loyal to his friends, and quickly became like a brother to Stewart.

“He was the only guy who could come to my house and lay in the bed with me and my momma wouldn’t think nothing of it,” Stewart said with a laugh. 

His first priority, though, was his two little girls, according to Purifory. 

He’d been making up for lost time with his daughters since he got out of prison in February after nearly two years behind bars for his role in a 2016 Boynton Beach carjacking. 

His co-defendant, who records indicate was the main aggressor, is serving a 13-year sentence in the case. 

Purifory and Stewart said their goofy friend was quick to smile and to offer help.

“How can somebody so sweet and so special be here one minute and then gone?” Stewart said.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Local

JUST IN: ‘The care they gave’: How EMS saved 77-year-old man after car struck bike
JUST IN: ‘The care they gave’: How EMS saved 77-year-old man after car struck bike

Roy McCarty calls it a blessing not that he was hit by a car, but where. The crash occurred in front of Palm Beach County Fire Rescue Station No. 42. The 77-year-old was out for a bike ride at 5 a.m. March 6 when he was struck by a driver who had fallen asleep. Crews at Station 42 were able to stabilize McCarty before another truck returned to take...
Dramatic Miami-Dade police video shows shootout at Trump Doral resort
Dramatic Miami-Dade police video shows shootout at Trump Doral resort

The Miami-Dade Police Department has released dramatic body-cam video from an officer who rushed into the lobby of the Trump Doral resort during a shootout with an armed man at 1:39 a.m. on May 18. Police identified the shooter as Jonathan Oddi, 42. Four days later, a motive for the bizarre incident has not been revealed. The video begins with...
WATCH: Florida man puts ex-girlfriend in trunk, leads deputies on 120 mph chase
WATCH: Florida man puts ex-girlfriend in trunk, leads deputies on 120 mph chase

A man was arrested after deputies said he punched his ex-girlfriend, put her in the trunk of a car, and then lead authorities on a 120 mph chase. The incident began Monday night in DeLand when Darrian Miller, 42, demanded his ex-girlfriend to drive him somewhere, WKMG reports. She complied, but after arriving at a food market Miller told her to...
West Palm green-lights all-options-open plan for transportation future
West Palm green-lights all-options-open plan for transportation future

The city has adopted an outline for a transportation future that puts trolley and bus riders, bicyclists and walkers on a more even footing with cars. In unanimously approving the mobility plan Monday night, the City Commission overstepped criticism the consultant-driven plan was an unrealistic and expensive road map for congestion. The mayor of Palm...
NEW: ‘No-swim’ advisory lifted for Lake Worth Beach
NEW: ‘No-swim’ advisory lifted for Lake Worth Beach

Health officials have lifted a ‘no-swim’ advisory that was issued last week for Lake Worth Beach.  Recent test results showed moderate levels of bacteria, making the water quality satisfactory, the Palm Beach County health department said Tuesday.  Swimmers are still encouraged to rinse off with fresh water after swimming...
More Stories