Manhunt expanded for suspect in Facebook video killing

The graphic video, uploaded to his Facebook account was titled "Easter Day Slaughter" and was up for three whole hours before the account was suspended and the video removed.

Investigators don't believe Stephens has killed anyone besides Godwin, however.

"As far as we know, right now, we don't know where he's at", Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams told WKYC 3. But Stephens remains at large as the hunt for him expands in OH and neighboring states, they said. Those outside of northeast OH are asked to contact local authorities with any information, while residents of northeast OH are asked to call 9-1-1. As a precaution, officers working in pairs.

Told a police statement: "At this time, there is no indication that the subject is at that location, or anywhere in the city of Philadelphia".

Mr Stephens turned to violence because he was angry with his ex-girlfriend Joy Lane, he says in a video posted to Facebook.

Police reported getting dozens and dozens of tips, and nine schools in Philadelphia were locked down Monday while authorities investigated possible sightings of Stephens. Stephens, she said, told her "it would be a miracle" if she ever saw him again.

In a third video 11 minutes later, streamed live from Stephens's vehicle, he says he intends to kill others.

Authorities in several states are looking for Stephens, news5cleveland.com said. The mayor of Cleveland and the Cleveland police department gave an update on the Facebook shooter via Periscope.

A spokeswoman for the behavior health facility where the suspect in the shooting of an elderly Cleveland man worked says the man underwent an extensive Federal Bureau of Investigation background check before being hired in 2008.

Stephens is employed at Beech Brook, a behavioral health agency in northeastern OH that serves children, teenagers and families, according to a spokeswoman for the facility.

Stephens had referred to himself as a case manager.

"We are shocked and horrified like everyone else", said Nancy Kortemeyer.

The authorities said the two men did not know each other.

Police say Stephens posted a video on Facebook showing him shooting Robert Godwin Sr., 74, on the street. Stephens also claimed to has killed as many as 12 people, though that has not been confirmed.

The statement said the agency's locations would be closed Monday "out of concerns for the safety of our staff, clients and other visitors to our sites".

Authorities also warned people in Pennsylvania, New York, Indiana and MI to be alert for Stephens, who is wanted on a charge of aggravated murder.

READ: Who Is Steve Stephens?

Stephens is a 37-year-old black man who works as a jobs counselor for teens and adults.

The operation is now being treated as a national search, News 5 Cleveland and other USA media reported Monday local time. They say Stephens should be considered armed and unsafe.

The police chief said: "We are not going to pinpoint a specific thing and say this is what triggered this, because we don't know". By midday Monday, the search for the accused murderer had spread nationwide. He was not a licensed social worker in the state.

According to Livingston County Sheriff Thomas Dougherty, authorities picked up a ping off Stephens' cell phone in Erie County, PA Sunday afternoon. Electronic billboards across five states will soon be displaying the suspect's description as police urge anyone with information to come forward.


Popular

CONNECT