“Easter Day Slaughter”: Manhunt For Active Cleveland Shooter Who Killed Man Live On Facebook, Reportedly Murdered 15
The Cleveland Police is looking for an active shooter, identified as 37-year-old Steve Stephens, who has broadcast a murder live on Facebook. According to Fox 8, he has claimed to have killed other people and says he is looking for more victims. The murder happened on East 93rd in Cleveland. Police said the shooter broadcasted the deadly shooting live on his social media page and claimed to have committed other homicides. Police are still investigating those claims.
A series of posts Sunday on what authorities said was Stephens’ Facebook page complained that he had “lost everything” to gambling. The posts named specific people whom the user wanted to talk to, and at one point he wrote “I killed 12 people today” and wouldn’t stop until he could speak to his mother and a second woman.
The incident reportedly happened on Sunday afternoon when Stephens began broadcasting live on Facebook, telling viewers that he was looking for someone to kill. A video shows him exiting his vehicle and walking up to a man, who is then shot and killed, seemingly at random. Stephens blamed his girlfriend for his actions and made his victim repeat the woman’s name before shooting him. “She’s the reason why this is about to happen to you,” Stevens told the victim seconds before taking out a gun and shooting him.
Stevens also told viewers that he had already killed multiple people, though police are still working to confirm whether that is true. His Facebook page has been deactivated and he is no longer broadcasting live online. Stephens, who works a mental health care manager, also wrote that he ‘messed up’ in postings on social media, and blamed the shooting on a woman, believed to be his ex-partner.
He wrote in a Facebook post that the woman is Joy Lane, and that he would only stop if she or his mother called him. Lane is said to be an Air Force veteran, and he said that the two dated for three years, and he wishes he’d never met her. Cleveland Police have confirmed that the video posted to Facebook Live showing an elderly man being shot is legitimate, and have since launched a massive manhunt for Stephens and several facilities in the area are on lockdown. Cleveland State University has urged students to shelter in place or, if they are elsewhere, to stay away from campus.
“Suspect did broadcast the killing on Facebook Live and has claimed to have committed multiple other homicides which are yet to be verified,“Cleveland Police confirmed in a statement published online. “No additional victims have been found. Officers continue to search multiple areas,” police wrote in an update to the previous statement. Stephens is described as a black male, bald with a full beard, standing 6 feet 1 inch tall and weighing about 244 pounds. He is wearing a dark blue and grey or black striped polo shirt and is traveling in a white or cream colored SUV.
Sources told FOX 8 he is driving a white Ford Fusion with temporary tags. The suspect is considered armed and dangerous. If seen, do not approach. Call 911 immediately. The Cleveland Division of the FBI said it is assisting in the investigation. A Cleveland State University spokesman said the campus has issued a shelter in place or to stay away.
The Cleveland police scanner can be heard at the following link.
Meanwhile, Stephens’s Facebook and all posts have since been taken down. The video of the shooting was on his page for three hours. A company spokesperson said in a statement: ‘This is a horrific crime and we do not allow this kind of content on Facebook. We work hard to keep a safe environment on Facebook, and are in touch with law enforcement in emergencies when there are direct threats to physical safety.’
Cleveland Police held a news conference with Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson and police chief Calvin Williams. Mayor Jackson said: ‘We want to communicate to him that he will eventually be caught. He need not do any more harm to anyone, any innocent people, and any concerns and problems he’s having we’re here to have a conversation with him.’
Stevens then said: ‘We need Steve to turn himself in. There are two families out there who are hurting, Mr Goodwin’s family and people who care about Steve, we are asking him to turn himself in.’ ‘Everyone is out there looking for Steve. We want this to end with as much peace as we can bring to this right now, and we want him to turn himself in. If that doesn’t happen we have all of our partners on this and we’ll look till we find him.’
He then said that they have the FBI and state and county partners working with them, and asked for anyone who knows anything to call 911. According to the Daily Mail, earlier on Sunday, Stephens blamed casinos and his lack of self control in the ‘Easter Sunday massacre’ in Cleveland. He specifically names the Jack Casino in Cleveland.
Though only one of the murders has been confirmed by police, he claims to have killed at least 14 others, and a woman online claims that he killed a two-year-old as well.
In the original Facebook post that has since been removed, he said: ‘Easter day slaughter because of joy lane,’ and ‘I killed 12 people and I won’t stop unit my mother and joy lane call me.’ The woman named is believed to be his ex-partner. Later on he claimed to have killed three more people, and said that the bodies were in an abandoned house, reported Heavy.
In the live video, he pulls up to an elderly man in his car and says: ‘Finally found somebody I’m going to Kill, I’m going to go kill this old dude.’ He then gets out and walks up to Goodwin, who appears to be holding a shopping bag. The two exchange a few words and the elderly man looks to be trying to shield himself. Stephens then lifts his gun and shoots him. Police chief Calvin Williams said that Goodwin was picked out at random in this ‘senseless’ murder. Friends have desperately been trying to get him to stop.
The shooting happened on East 93 Street just south of the Interstate 90 in the city’s Glenville neighborhood, Cleveland police spokeswoman Sgt. Jennifer Ciaccia said, told the Plain Dealer. Cleveland Police said in a statement: ‘Cleveland Police are currently investigating a homicide at 635 E. 93. ‘Suspect did broadcast the killing on Facebook Live and has claimed to have committed multiple other homicides which are yet to be verified. ‘Suspect in this case is a bm (black male) Steve Stephens 6’1 244 bald with a full beard.
‘Wearing dark blue and grey or black striped polo shirt. White or cream colored SUV. Armed and dangerous. If seen call 9-1-1. Do not approach.’ Other videos on his social media profile show him at a gun range. Shanice Dunning from Cleveland 19 News spoke with a man and woman who has said that the man killed in the video, Goodwin, was their 74-year-old father. The two are distraught, and the man says: ‘He’s a good guy, he’d give you the shirt off his back. I’m not just saying that for these cameras. I’m telling the truth this man right here was a good man.’