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United States police search for man who broadcast deadly shooting on Facebook

18 April 2017

USA police on Monday widened a manhunt for a gunman who shot and killed an elderly man, and then posted a video of the seemingly random Easter Sunday attack on Facebook.

According to police, Robert Godwin was out on a walk collecting aluminum cans, something his family says he did often, when 37-year-old Steve Stevens exited his auto and demanded Godwin say the name of Stevens' ex-girlfriend, Joy Lane.

Mr Stephens' mobile phone last released a signal, or ping, in Erie, Pennsylvania, 165km northeast of Cleveland, authorities told CNN, but Cleveland police chief Calvin Williams said his last confirmed location was the scene of the crime.

The video allegedly published by Stephens was published to Facebook on Easter Sunday.

The victim, 74-year-old Robert Godwin, was on his way home from an Easter meal with his children.

Numerous police units responded to the site, where Godwin had been collecting aluminum cans, after a report that Stephens was broadcasting a live video of the murder.

Investigators said that Godwin was the only victim so far linked to Stephens, despite the suspect's claim in a separate video on Facebook that he killed over a dozen people.

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Philadelphia police said schools in the area were put on lockdown Monday afternoon while authorities investigated reported sightings of Stephens. He said Cleveland police had paired up in squad cars as they hunted for Stephens.

"I killed 13, so I'm working on 14 as we speak", he said in that video.

Cleveland police have issued an aggravated murder warrant for a man accused of shooting and killing another man in Cleveland and posting the video on Facebook. Police said anyone who spots Stephens should call 911.

Police radio captured the frenzy over the search for Steve Stephens.

"He is considered armed and unsafe, so we want people to be careful out there", he added. The video was reportedly up for three hours on Facebook before being taken down, and many other news outlets shared censored versions of it.

Authorities also said that there had been no evidence that Stephens was in the Philadelphia area. She said he had a good retirement plan from his years as a foundry worker but that "it was just something to do".

A frame from video posted on Facebook shows Robert Godwin Sr in Cleveland moments before being fatally shot.

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Earlier, Cleveland police had urged residents in Pennsylvania, New York, Indiana, and MI to be on alert.

He also reported the timeline of events Sunday, starting with when the first video was posted.

She told CBS News in a text message that she was "sorry that all of this has happened".

The motive for the shooting wasn't entirely clear from the shaky video, in which Stephens tells Godwin a woman's name and says, "She's the reason that this is about to happen to you".

"Any problems he is having, we can have a conversation", Jackson said.

Lane, via social media, assured her closest friends and family members that she is safe and physically unharmed and is under the protection of law enforcement until such time as this tragic situation comes to its conclusion.

In his broadcast, Stevens displayed his Beech Brook badge.

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A spokeswoman for the behavior health facility where the suspect in the shooting of an elderly Cleveland man worked says the man underwent an extensive Federal Bureau of Investigation background check before being hired in 2008.