The Cleveland Police Department announced Monday that a $50,000 reward has been posted by Crime Stoppers for any information leading to the arrest of the man accused of killing Robert Godwin Sr. and then posting the horrific video on Facebook.
Fox News reports that the police have now launched a nationwide search for 37-year-old Steve Stephens and asked residents of Pennsylvania, New York, Indiana and Michigan to be on alert.
Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams said that officers have searched several locations for Stephens but have not had any success. The Police Department is working alongside federal, state and other local law-enforcement agencies to find him.
“As far as we know right now, we don’t know where he’s at,” Williams said at a Monday-morning news conference. “The last location we had him at was the homicide.”
Williams also encouraged the accused killer to turn himself in or to reach out to a friend, relative or member of the clergy.
The chief acknowledged that detectives had spoken with Stephens via cellphone at one point but that since then, they had not made any contact with him.
“Early in this investigation, we did have contact with him, direct contact with our detectives,” Williams said. “They tried to convince him to turn himself in.”
Authorities issued an arrest warrant for Stephens on Monday. He is facing charges of aggravated murder for the death of Godwin, 74.
In video of the incident, Stephens gets out of his car and targets Godwin, who was holding a plastic shopping bag for collecting cans. Stephens mentions that an ex-girlfriend, Joy Lane, is the reason Godwin is going to die, before shooting the beloved father and grandfather, officials say.