Suspected Facebook Killer Commits Suicide in Pennsylvania

(CN) – Suspected killer Steve Stephens fatally shot himself in Erie County, Pennsylvania, on Tuesday, ending a nationwide manhunt that began Easter Sunday after he posted a murder video on Facebook.

Stephens, 37, was accused of shooting and killing Robert Godwin – a mechanic and grandfather of 14 – as he walked home on Sunday in Cleveland, Ohio.

Police say Stephens recorded the seemingly random crime on his cellphone and later uploaded the video to Facebook, where it garnered nationwide attention. Stephens was wanted on an aggravated murder charge.

Pennsylvania State Police had posted to Twitter that Stephens “was spotted this morning by PSP members in Erie County. A traffic stop was attempted and, after a brief pursuit, Stephens shot and killed himself.”

During a press conference that began around noon on Tuesday, Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams said Pennsylvania police got a tip that Stephens’ vehicle was in a McDonald’s parking lot in Erie, Pa.

“It was a short pursuit … [and] as the officers approached the vehicle, Steven took his life,” Williams said.

The police chief continued, “There are a lot of things we don’t know. We are in the early stages of this.”

“Our condolences are with the family of Mr. Godwin,” Williams said. “They were forgiving of Steve for committing this atrocious act, and we need to follow their lead.”

Chief Williams took questions from the media but refused to comment on the tactics used by the Pennsylvania State Police and said the investigation is still in its early stages.

“We would like to have brought Steve in peacefully … and find out why he did what he did,” Williams told reporters, adding that individuals who feel “not quite right” should contact local authorities to get the help they need.

According to a CNN report, Stephens told his mother on Sunday he “was ‘shooting people’ because he was ‘mad with his girlfriend,’ of about three years.”

The same article notes that while he has numerous traffic violations, Stephens had no criminal history.

After the incident gained national attention, Facebook said it is launching a review for reporting harmful content.

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