In this tragic story, an elderly man lost his life after being shot by a man who goes by the name ‘Stevie Steve’ on Facebook. The murder was recorded and uploaded to Facebook and has since been confirmed as legitimate by the Cleveland Police.
The murder has caused parts of the city to go under lockdown as officials search for the man that has been identified as Steve Stephens.
This crime occurred at 635 East 93rd Street, according to Police. In the graphic video, Steve can be seen driving up the street when he says he’s found someone he’s going to kill, gesturing to the elderly man walking on the street.
He gets out of the car and after a brief confrontation, Steven shoots him as the man tries to shield his face. The victim, Robert Godwin Sr., who was 74 years old, can be seen lying on the ground in a puddle of his own blood as Steve makes his escape.
The Facebook page where Stephens posted the video has now been taken down, but the video is still floating around the internet and is extremely graphic.
A GoFundMe page has been set up in order to help the family of Godwin during this difficult time. All donations will be given directly to the family.
Police are continuing to search for Stephens and after going to a few locations they haven’t had much luck yet.
The search is now being extended out to other states with officers in New York and Pennsylvania on the job. There was also a possibility that he was in Erie, Pennsylvania at about 7 p.m. on Sunday, according to the Times Observer.
Police are hoping that Stephens will turn himself in. Chief Calvin Williams said, ‘Right now there are two families out there hurting,’ at a press conference. ‘Mr, Godwin’s family and of course there are people out there who care about Steve and want to see this not go any further.’
Stephens posted other videos to his Facebook explaining his reasoning for the kills. One speculation is that it could be related to his girlfriend, Joy Lane, or possibly his mother.
On Facebook, Stephens wrote ‘Three years I spent with this [expletive]… I wish we never met,’ and in the video he asks Godwin to say her name, saying: ‘She’s the reason this is about to happen to you.’
Stephens currently has 12-13 possible victims with one only the confirmed. His first Facebook post titled the killings ‘Easter day slaughter’ and he supposedly wrote that he wasn’t going to stop until his mother and another woman called him.
Godwin’s family has been devastated by his death, and police say that he was chosen at random. Family members shared that he was truly a good guy, and they are at a loss on what to do without him.
As Stephen continued to post about the killings, he left details saying that he had left several bodies in abandoned houses. Although, when police searched these locations they found no other victims.
It’s unclear whether or not he has actually killed more people besides Godwin, but the police have to take the claims very seriously.
Other comments from Stephens include ‘I’m the #goodguy’ and ‘this shit is real,’ and apparently blamed the shootings on Joy Lane. Lane, who is being protected by the police, shared that she is very sad that this is happening, and that Stephens needs help.
Cleveland Police shared a Facebook post describing Stephens appearance and car. Stephens is 6’1, 244 pounds, with a bald head and a full beard. He was last seen wearing a dark blue and gray or a black striped polo shirt. He drives a white/cream colored Ford Fusion with the temporary tag E363630
Police say he’s armed and dangerous and they encourage people to remain safe and look out for one another. In another post/video, which has now been removed, Stephens explained that his mother and girlfriend drove him to kill by not caring about his suicidal or homicidal thoughts.
Police officers are doubling up and sometimes riding in tandem alongside state and county partners as they patrol and search for Stephens. They have already followed up on hundreds of leads, according to the police.
Although there hasn’t been an official sighting of Stephens since the accident, now that many people are aware of the situation and his appearance, hopefully, they will be able to find him soon and prevent anyone else from getting hurt or killed.
Stephens’ mother, Maggie Green, has talked to CNN since the incident and has spoken to her son since the Facebook posts were made. She told CNN that she was in shock and wants him to stop. She also explained that he told her he was doing this because he was mad with Lane.
Godwin’s family do not blame Lane for the murder, and these actions may be stemming from deeper financial problems as Stephens struggled with gambling, bankruptcy, and other issues in the past.
In another post by Stephens, he shared that he was losing it and felt as though he has come to his breaking point. He allegedly posted that he hopes to get onto death row after all of this. He also blamed his place of work for driving him to kill.
Whether mental health is a part of this crime or not, Stephens is still dangerous and on the run. Hopefully, he will turn himself in eventually, and perhaps events like this may shine a spotlight on the problems and stigmas surrounding mental health.