Joy Lane, the former girlfriend of Facebook murder suspect Steve Stephens, offered her condolences Monday to those mourning the death of 74-year-old Robert Godwin Sr. in Cleveland. Speaking to Time from a safe location, Lane said she was "overwhelmed" by the act of violence.
"I'm just overwhelmed, and I feel bad for all the families affected," Lane said. "He was a really good guy. He's been fabulous to me." In the Facebook video, which has since been removed, Stephens approaches Godwin Sr. and tells him to say Lane's name before the gun is fired. Lane said Monday she was "not sure" why he would have mentioned her.
In a text message to CBS News Sunday, Lane said she and Stephens "had been in a relationship" for several years. "I am sorry that all of this has happened," she said. "My heart & prayers goes out to the family members of the victim(s). Steve really is a nice guy... he is generous with everyone he knows. He was kind and loving to me and my children. This is a very difficult time for me and my family. Please respect our privacy at this time."
Stephens' mother toldCNN they last saw each other on Saturday. Stephens, she said, told her "it would be a miracle" if she ever saw him again. The following day, Stephens told his mother he was "angry with his girlfriend." Details of Stephens and Lane's relationship are unclear.
The search for Stephens, who has reportedly claimed to have killed multiple people, is now a multi-state effort between the Cleveland Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. "He could be nearby," FBI agent Stephen Anthony said Monday, the Associated Press reported. "He could be far away, or anywhere in between."
In a statement, a Facebook representative reiterated their stance on keeping Facebook users safe. "This is a horrific crime and we do not allow this kind of content on Facebook," the statement said. "We take our responsibility to keep people safe on Facebook very seriously, and are in touch with law enforcement in emergencies when there are direct threats to physical safety."