2017 Cleveland Facebook Live Shooting

2017 Cleveland Facebook Live Shooting

Updated Jun 20, 2019 at 03:15PM EDT by Kevinvq2.

Added Apr 16, 2017 at 07:57PM EDT by Brad.

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2017 Cleveland Facebook Live Murder refers to the fatal shooting of a man carried out and filmed by Steve Stephens, the suspect who still remains at large at the time of writing, and livecast on the social networking site in real-time in downtown Cleveland, Ohio on the afternoon of April 16th, 2017.


At around 2 p.m. on April 16th, 2017, Easter Day, a man named Steve Stephens began a Facebook Live video in which he is seen driving down a road in downtown Cleveland, Ohio before coming to a stop and exiting the vehicle at East 93rd Street, where he approaches an elderly man to ask how old he is before drawing a gun and shooting him in the face. The victim has been identified by the Cleveland Police Department as 74-year-old Robert Goodwin Sr.


Status Updates

The suspect continued to post status updates on his Facebook page after the livecast ended, in which he claimed that he had murdered a dozen more people in the time leading up to what he described as an "Easter day slaughter." In another post, he claimed that he had killed three more before, whose bodies are allegedly concealed in an "abandoned warehouse," and said that he won't stop until his mother and another woman, whose name has not been released, call him. In a later post, Stephens blamed the shootings on a woman with whom he had presumably dated, as he can be heard asking the victim to say his ex-girlfriend's name, Joy Lane, before committing a senseless murder, saying that “she’s the reason this is about to happen to you.”

Online Reaction

The video immediately made the rounds on most social networking sites in the United States, while the term "Facebook Live" and #Cleveland skyrocketed to the #1 search on Google Trends and Twitter.[3]

Official Response

In the following hours, Cleveland Police Department began a citywide manhunt for the suspect and released a statement urging Stephens to turn himself into police, while informing the public that he should be considered armed and dangerous. In response to Stephens' claim that he had killed at least a dozen additional people, Cleveland Police Department Chief Calvin Williams has released a statement saying "there are no more victims that we know are tied to him."

News Media Coverage

The story dominated the trending topics chart in the United States on virtually all social networking and news sites, with Heavy.com offering some of the most extensive coverage of how the tragedy happened as the manhunt for the suspect continued in Cleveland and the neighboring regions.

Suspect Found Dead

On the morning of April 18th, after nearly 48 hours of an interstate manhunt with little progress, Stephens was found dead in his white Ford Fusion sedan in Erie County, Pennsylvania, about 100 miles away from the scene of the crime. According to the Erie Police Department, Stephens shot and killed himself in his car after being spotted and pursued by the state authorities. At 11:46 a.m. (EST), Pennsylvania State Police (@PAStatePolice) issued a tweet confirming the suspect was found dead with self-inflicted gunshot wound.

PA State Police @PAStatePolice ATE Steve Stephens was spotted this morning by PSP members in Erie County. After a brief pursuit, Stephens shot and killed himself.

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