Alleged Facebook Killer 'Could Be ... Anywhere'

Search expands nationwide as authorities post $50K reward
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Apr 17, 2017 8:24 PM CDT
Search for Alleged Facebook Killer Expands Nationwide
This undated photo provided by the Cleveland Police shows Steve Stephens. Cleveland police said they are searching for Stephens, a homicide suspect, who recorded himself shooting another man and then posed the video on Facebook on Sunday, April 16, 2017.    (Uncredited)

In a rambling video, Steve Stephens said, "I snapped, I just snapped." But as the manhunt dragged on Monday for the man accused of posting Facebook footage of himself killing a retiree, police were unable to explain what set him off. "Only Steve knows that," Cleveland police Chief Calvin Williams said as authorities posted a $50,000 reward for Stephens' capture in the shooting of Robert Godwin Sr., a 74-year-old former foundry worker. A manhunt that started in Cleveland's gritty east side expanded rapidly into a nationwide search for Stephens, a 37-year-old job counselor who worked with teens and young adults, police said. "He could be nearby. He could be far away or anywhere in between," FBI agent Stephen Anthony said, per the AP.

Law enforcement officials said Stephens' cellphone signal was last detected on Sunday afternoon in Erie, Pennsylvania, about 100 miles east of Cleveland. Detectives spoke with Stephens on Sunday by cellphone and tried to persuade him to surrender, police said. In the video, Stephens blamed a former girlfriend he had lived with for his crime, saying he woke up last week and "couldn't take it anymore." But in a statement Monday, the woman shed little light on what might have gone wrong and said Stephens was good to her and her children. As for the shooting victim, Godwin appeared to have been selected at random, gunned down while picking up aluminum cans Sunday afternoon after spending Easter with some of his children. Investigators said that Godwin was the only victim so far linked to Stephens, despite his claim in a separate video on Facebook that he killed more than a dozen people. (More murder stories.)

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