‘We have closure’: Facebook murder suspect found dead in Erie, PA

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ERIE, Pa. -- Facebook murder suspect Steve Stephens has been found dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound in Erie, Pa.

"We have closure in regards to the search for Steve Stephens," Mayor Frank Jackson said during a press conference Tuesday afternoon.

Chief Calvin Williams said that at just after 11 a.m. Pennsylvania State Police received a tip that Stephens' vehicle was seen in a McDonald's parking lot near Erie, Pa.

A press release from the PA State Police states that troopers immediately began to canvas the area for Stephens and located him in his vehicle a short time later.

Troopers in marked patrol cars initiated a pursuit that lasted around two miles. The troopers attempted a PIT maneuver to disable Stephens' vehicle, and as it was spinning out of control, police say Stephens pulled a pistol and shot himself in the head.

A patrol trooper was not able to stop in time and slid into Stephens' vehicle. There were no injuries to law enforcement or members of the public.

 

Police say Stephens, 37, murdered a man on East 93rd Street in Cleveland Sunday afternoon. Stephens posted video of the crime on his Facebook page, then in a series of other live videos, claimed to kill others.

According to Cleveland police, 74-year-old Robert Godwin, Sr. was the only victim.

Authorities said they aren't yet sure if Stephens had ties to the Erie area or what his activity was before he was located.

"We're making sure we go back and retrace as much as possible," Williams said.

The Godwin family tells Fox 8's Peggy Gallek after hearing the news of Stephens' death that they had prayed he would surrender to authorities. They said this was not the ending they wanted.

See the blog below for much more from the press conference.

Continuing coverage of this story here.

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