Cleveland Facebook killing: Neighboring states asked to be on alert for suspect

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Cleveland Facebook killing: Neighboring states asked to be on alert for suspect

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Courtesy of CBS Affiliate Cleveland 19

CLEVELAND — The man accused of fatally shooting an older man on East 93rd Street on Sunday afternoon while recording himself on Facebook blamed the random attack on a woman.

  • Steve Stephens remained at large Monday morning, possibly driving a newer model white Ford Fusion.
  • Police said Stephens shot and killed 74-year-old Robert Godwin Sr. in Cleveland. 
  • Cleveland Police Department issued an arrest warrant urging Pennsylvania, New York, Indiana and Michigan residents to be on the lookout for Stephens who is considered armed and dangerous.
  • Stephens is described as 6-foot-1-inch tall 244 pound bald man with a full beard. 

The video

The video shows the point-of-view of the shooter as he exits a vehicle and approaches an older man walking down the sidewalk carrying a plastic shopping bag.

Stephens said a woman’s name and asked Godwin to repeat it. 

“She’s the reason that this is about to happen to you,” he said as the older man tried to shield himself with a shopping bag.

The son and daughter of the man killed by another on Facebook live speak about their father.

You can see in the video as the suspect points a handgun and shoots. The victim can be seen lying motionless and bloody on the pavement before the suspect returns to the vehicle.

East 102-108 Streets in Cleveland were on lockdown, and the Cleveland Clinic was on standby for casualties. 

 Cleveland Police report via Twitter that the suspect was last seen south of Interstate 90 in the area of East 93rd.

Response to the shooting

The city’s mayor and police chief urged Stephens, who worked for a behavioral health agency, to turn himself in.

A spokeswoman for Beech Brook, Stephens’ employer, said they are “shocked and horrified.”

"We hope and pray that he is arrested as soon as possible and we hope and pray for a resolution quickly,” Nancy Kortemeyer told WOIO-TV in Cleveland.

Facebook released a statement in condemnation of the killing of a Cleveland man. The social media site said the killing was recorded and uploaded to the site, updating initial reports the video was carried out on Facebook live.  Facebook said Stephens was live at one point during the day, but not during the killing.  

In another video, Stephens claimed to have killed more than a dozen others, but police said they have not found evidence of any other victims.

Cleveland police chief sends message to Steve Stephens

POLICE CHIEF: ‘We will look until we find him’

Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams urged suspect Steve Stephens to turn himself in during a news conference Sunday evening.

Stephens is the suspect of a massive manhunt who recorded himself shooting and killing an older man on Facebook. Police called the act random.

Authorities in Cleveland said they will be working with federal, county, state and other local partners to help track Stephens.

“We will look until we find him,” the chief said.

Stephens is believed to be driving a newer model white Ford Fusion, possibly with temporary tags. He is 6 feet, 1 inches and weighs about 244 pounds. He is bald with a full beard.

Despite Stephens’ claims that he killed 13 or 14 other people, “currently, there are no other victims that we know of,” Williams said.

Police are checking hundreds of leads and are asking residents to be careful. No part of the city was on lockdown, but anyone who comes into contact with Stephens is urged to call 911 and to not approach him because “he is considered armed and dangerous,” the chief said.

This undated photo provided by the Cleveland Police shows Steve Stephens. Cleveland police say they are searching for Stephens, a homicide suspect, who broadcast the fatal shooting of another man live on Facebook on Sunday, April 16, 2017. Cleveland Police via AP
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