Pictured are 11th Congressional District Congresswoman Marcia L. Fudge, Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson (wearing beard and eye glasses), Cleveland Ward 10 Councilman Jeff Johnson (wearing gold tie), Cleveland Ward 2 Councilman Zack Reed (wearing grey tie), Cleveland murder victim Robert Godwin Sr. ,74, (weaing green and brown shirt), and Godwin's killer, Facebook murderer Steve Stephens, 37 (weraing full beard and blue shirt). Stephens allegedly committed suicide on Tuesday, April 18 in Erie, Pennsylvania in his 2016 ford fusion as police were in hot pursuit following a tip that carries a $50,000 reward
CLEVELAND URBAN NEWS.COM-WARRENSVILLE HEIGHTS, Ohio - Ohio 11th Congressional District Congresswoman Marcia L. Fudge (OH-11), a Warrensville Heights Democrat whose largely Black congressional district includes parts of Cleveland and several of its eastern suburbs, released a statement on Tuesday following the suicide of Cleveland Facebook murderer Steve Stephens.
"The search for Steve Stephens is over, and I hope our community can begin to heal," said Fudge in a press release to Cleveland Urban News.Com, Ohio's most read digital Black newspaper. "I send sincere condolences to the family and friends of Robert Godwin, Sr., and I pray for their peace during this difficult time."
Made famous by randomly gunning down 74-year-old Robert Godwin Sr on the city's largely Black east side on Easter Sunday and posting a video of the shooting on Facebook Live, Stephens, who was Black like Godwin, was found dead of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound Tuesday, April 18, in Erie, Pennsylvania, police said.
The congresswoman said that "Mr. Godwin's death was a tragic loss, and a shocking reminder of the toll gun violence is taking on our communities, and we must do everything in our power to stop these senseless acts."
Following a nationwide manhunt, the deranged killer was spotted Tuesday morning in Erie in a McDonald's parking lot, and as police, who were reportedly tipped off, approached the infamous White 2016 ford fusion he was driving, the same vehicle he was driving when he allegedly shot Godwin, Stephens allegedly shot himself to death.
A former foundry worker, Godwin is survived by 10 children, 14 grandchildren, and longtime girlfriend and the mother of two of his children, Angela Smith, 34.
His funeral service will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday at River of Life Ministries on Lakeshore Boulevard in Euclid and is open to the public.
One of two Blacks from Ohio in congress, Fudge thanked Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson, Police Chief Calvin Williams, U.S. Marshal Peter J. Elliott, FBI Special Agent Stephen D. Anthony, and local and national law enforcement affiliates for their work in pursuit of Stephens, 37, and a mental health worker who mentored troubled youth for nearly a decade.
Mayor Jackson and Chief Williams are Black and the mayor is seeking an unprecedented fourth term this year in a crowded field of at least eight candidates, including Ward 2 Councilman Zack Reed, who announced his candidacy at a press conference on Wednesday, Ward 10 Councilman Jeff Johnson, and former East Cleveland mayor Eric Brewer.
Reed, Johnson and Brewer are also Black.
Both Johnson and Reed are campaigning on neighborhood safety and revitalizing inner city neighborhoods.
Jackson's thrust is that he has a record of success and has balanced the interest of the business community and his constituents in a crafty manner, his critics saying the inner city has virtually been ignored for downtown interests and big business.
Absent a shake-up, prediction is that Jackson will face either Reed or Johnson in a non-partisan run-off, though both Reed and Johnson have taken out petitions for reelection to city council and for mayor, the deadline for which is June 29 for them to file petitions to run for either spot.
All 17 city council seats are up for grabs this year.
The mayor and all of city council are Democrats.
Cleveland is a largely Black major American city of some 375,000 people, and the second most segregated city in the country, behind Boston.