It’s over — thanks to fast food.
Facebook murderer Steve Stephens shot and killed himself in Pennsylvania Tuesday morning, ending a three-day manhunt for the Cleveland killer, police confirmed.
He gave himself away after stopping by a McDonald’s restaurant in Erie County to order chicken nuggets and fries. A drive-through employee tipped police, according to GoErie.
Officers attempted a traffic stop around 11 a.m. and Stephens drove away, starting a brief pursuit, Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams said.
Stephens then pulled over and turned the gun on himself.
“We are grateful to the people who gave this tip,” Williams said in a press conference.
“We are grateful that this has ended. We’d have preferred if it did not end this way.”
Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf commended police for the pursuit and said no one else in the state was hurt.
Stephens, 37, remained on the run for nearly 48 hours after shooting a stranger, Robert Godwin, Sr., in the head and posting the snuff footage on Facebook.
In a frantic Facebook Live rant, Stephens blamed the bloodshed on an ex-lover and claimed he killed 13 people — with more murders to come until cops caught him.
Police on Tuesday said no evidence of other killings had been found.
Stephens’ sudden suicide came only two hours after police announced they had received nearly 400 tips nationwide for the case, but none led to clear clues about the killer’s location.
One tip, though, was a ping of Stephens’ phone in Erie on Monday. A reported sighting in Philadelphia the same day led to nine schools getting locked down.
The sprawling manhunt ended about 100 miles away from the crime scene — less than a two-hour drive.
Williams lamented how the bloody end to the chase killed the chances of learning what drove Stephens to murder.
“It started with one tragedy and ended with another person taking their own life,” the police chief said.
After his death, Stephens’ mother, Maggie Green, told Cleveland media her son had a gambling problem and bottomed out after a recent breakup.
He visited her soon before the Facebook slaying and hinted at something sinister to come.
“He said, ‘Momma, this gonna be the last day you see me. Is there anything you wanna say to me?’” she said.
She said she told him she loved him, and warned him not to do something “stupid.”
The murder clip raised concerns about the effect Facebook and its live videos might have on encouraging public carnage.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg passingly acknowledged the murder during a talk on Tuesday, but offered no solutions for his social network.
“Our hearts go out to the family and friends of Robert Godwin Sr.,” Zuckerberg said at Facebook’s annual F8 developer conference.
“We have a lot of work and we will keep doing all we can to prevent tragedies like this from happening.”
He then moved on to talk about Facebook’s plans for a so-called “augmented reality” platform, which would let users create effects such as flying birds.
via NY Daily News
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