Authorities have made a second arrest in connection to the shooting at a Florida Burger King.
On Wednesday, 31-year-old Ashley Mason was arrested and charged with principal to first-degree murder and aggravated assault with a firearm, three days after her husband, Kelvis Rodriguez, was arrested for killing the restaurant cashier, Desmond Joshua Jr. who was only on his second day at the job.
The murder occurred after Mason became upset for having to wait too long for her food in the Burger King drive-thru after ordering $33.11 worth of food. Amid the wait, Mason got into an argument with Joshua before he eventually refunded her $40 and asked her to leave.
However, sometime during their exchange, Mason phoned Rodriguez claiming that she “felt as if the crew was being disrespectful and unprofessional.” She then informed the staff that Rodriguez was coming to the Burger King to “talk to them.”
According to the affidavit, Mason lied and told investigators that she returned to her home before returning to the Burger King. However, surveillance footage from a neighboring restaurant showed Mason parking her car in the Burger King parking lot as she waited for her husband to arrive.
Once Rodriguez arrived, he confronted Joshua, and a physical altercation ensued in the restaurant’s parking lot.
The affidavit claims that “At the same time, Ashley Mason said she saw a firearm in the front seat of her husband’s truck, took possession of it, and placed it in her Honda Accord. As the fight was broken up, she said Kelvis Rodriguez said, ‘Give me the fire,’ and she handed the handgun to him.”
Mason then alleged that as she attempted to back her car out of its parking spot, Joshua jumped over the hood of the vehicle and walked toward the driver’s side of Rodriguez’s vehicle. She then claims to have heard a gunshot and saw Joshua fall to the ground. When law enforcement arrived, they discovered Joshua lying on his back with a gunshot wound. He was pronounced dead at a local hospital.
The mother, who’s 13-year-old daughter was present during the ordeal, “said she got scared and went home to decide her next actions.” She also attempted to make her husband appear remorseful, claiming that he told her, “I messed up.” While the couple tried to plot their next move, Mason’s mother came to their home. While she spoke with her mother, Rodriguez took his mother-in-law’s car and allegedly got rid of the gun.
Meanwhile, the affidavit paints a different picture of Mason, who tried to minimalize her role in the murder.
“Based on the various witness testimony from the Burger King Employees, Ashley Mason armed herself with the handgun and pointed it in the direction of the physical fight between Kelvis Rodriguez and Desmond Joshua, Jr. and the people around it. This action caused several bystanders to run due to fear of the firearm.” The affidavit continued, “Furthermore, Kelvis Rodriguez is heard yelling, ‘Bust him if he touches me!’ on the cellular phone video. Once the fight is broken up, Kelvis Rodriguez, who repeatedly and loudly threatened to shoot Desmond Joshua, Jr., asked for the handgun from Ashley Mason, and she subsequently provided it to him. The handgun was the weapon used to shoot and kill Desmond Joshua, Jr. moments later.”
In addition to first-degree murder, Rodriguez has also been charged with destruction of evidence and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.