While we tend to associate social media images and videos with happy and fun moments, there are cases where social media can be used in the most gruesome and horrifying ways. And one such instance took place in Cleveland, where a man decided to broadcast the reasons why he was going on a killing spree for the world to see. In a series of videos posted to Facebook, a 37-year-old Cleveland man talked about the reasons why he was upset with his life, and why he felt the need to go around shooting innocent bystanders.
Even though authorities have yet to confirm all the man’s claims, such as the fact that he killed multiple people, there is some online evidence that he caused serious harm. After posting his initial videos, the man live streamed an incident where he was driving on the street, stopped on the road, walked up to an elderly gentleman and shot him dead. The video was available to view on several social media and online streaming platforms, even though most them took down the video after they realized its nature. The story was national news at this point, with people in the Cleveland area remaining vigilant about the man’s next intentions.
Despite the fact that the man in question, Steve Stephens, continued to post on social media about his behavior, he has yet to be apprehended by authorities. A multi-state manhunt is now underway, with police aware of Stephens’ appearance and the car he is driving. However, no leads have emerged as to where he could be hiding, or whether he is merely driving around looking to cause more trouble. Not only are people in the state of Ohio advised to remain vigilant when being out in public, but those in neighboring states such as Pennsylvania and New York are also being warned.
When he was putting out his first few videos, Stephens claimed that he had murdered around 12 individuals. However, police have not recovered any bodies, and there are no crime reports in the area to suggest such a killing spree was underway. However, given the nature of the area where Stephens lived, where there are plenty of abandoned buildings and homes, it is entirely possible there is some truth to his story. In either case, authorities are treating the manhunt for Stephens as their number one priority, and there is even a reward of $50,000 to anyone who can assist in his capture or provide information about his whereabouts.
It appears the origin of Stephens’ anger is a failed relationship. When he posted the video of himself shooting an elderly gentleman who was merely walking on the sidewalk, he spoke to the man about a woman who is believed to be his ex-girlfriend. Thankfully, police contacted her almost immediately, as Stephens revealed her name in his videos, and she is safe and under protection. It is unclear whether there is any other reason for Stephens going on such a sadistic spree, but authorities can only learn more if they are able to apprehend the man.