The Facebook killer was found dead in a car following a police chase.
On Easter Sunday, 2017, Stephens executed 74-year-old Robert Godwin Sr.
Stephens made a video of the murder and posted it on Facebook. In the video Stephens appears to choose Godwin at random. “I found somebody I’m about to kill,” Stephens said in the video after seeing Godwin walking along the street.
In the grisly murder video Stephens instructs Godwin to say his girlfriends name, Joy Lane, before shooting him. In the video Stephens claims to have killed other people and plans to kill again. “She’s the reason that this is about to happen to you,” Stephens told Godwin before pulling the trigger.
Stephens successfully evaded police for nearly three days as a nationwide manhunt offered a $50,000 reward for information about his whereabouts. More than 400 people called in with tips and sightings from Texas to New York, most of these proved to be false.
Cleveland shooter Steve Stephens found in Erie on Buffalo Rd by Rodger Young Park. Dead in vehicle of self inflicted gun shot wound. pic.twitter.com/KRR3ROBtTI
— Dennis Weed (@DennisWeed) April 18, 2017
Late Tuesday morning Stephens shot himself after leading police on a brief chase through Erie, Pennsylvania. Officers found his body inside the same white Ford Fusion he drove to murder Godwin. Stephens died of a self inflicted gunshot wound.
Godwin’s children released a statement to the media. “Each one of us forgives the killer, the murderer,” said daughter Tonya Godwin Baines. “We want to wrap our arms around him.”