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Facebook murder suspect remains at large as police ask public for help

20 April, 2017, 06:27 | Author: Nadine Todd
  • A makeshift memorial sits along a fence near where Robert Godwin Sr was killed in Cleveland

It marked a violent end to the almost 48-hour multistate manhunt for Steve Stephens, who was wanted in the apparently random slaying of 74-year-old Robert Godwin Sr.as he walked on a street collecting cans Easter Sunday.

"As the vehicle was spinning out of control from the PIT maneuver, Stephens pulled a pistol and shot himself in the head", Pennsylvania State Police said.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg commented on the incident following criticism over the social-media giant's failure to more closely monitor violence on its platforms.

As The Two-Way reported, police said that Stephens "claimed to have committed multiple other homicides, which are still not verified".

A lineup of local law enforcement including Pennsylvania State Police, Wesleyville Police and the Erie County District Attorney's Office briefed the press both local and national Tuesday afternoon at the state police barracks in Lawrence Park. Stephens later posted video of the elderly man's death on Facebook.

This undated photo provided by the Cleveland Police shows Steve Stephens. "If you did it, you have to face your crime", she said.

Before the shooting, he demanded Godwin say Joy Lane, the name of Stephens' ex-girlfriend.

Godwin's daughter, Brenda Haymon, learned of Stephens' death as she was planning funeral arrangements for her father.

"We are in the early stages of this", Williams said.

She told the affiliate that she tried to reach Stephens after the video of the killing surfaced on Facebook, but he didn't answer his phone.

According to WKYC's Chris Tye, the manager called Pennsylvania State Police and that Stephens was there.

A spokeswoman for Beech Brook, the mental health agency where Stephens had worked with teens and young adults since 2008, called the culmination of the manhunt "a tragic situation on every level". Facebook said it removed the video 23 minutes after learning of it.

In an interview with CNN, Stephens' mother said he told her he shot the man because he was "mad with his girlfriend". Since then, he led authorities on a nationwide search that ended when he shot himself dead.

Cleveland Police issued an aggravated murder warrant for Stephens and a $50,000 reward was offered for information leading to his capture.

Facebook plans to work with developers this year to come up with more augmented reality games and other uses, Zuckerberg said.

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