Ex-girlfriend of Facebook killer meets victim’s daughters, tries to ‘pick up the pieces’ of her life

Published: Thursday, April 20, 2017 @ 5:13 PM

Facebook Video Murder Suspect Steve Stephens Found Dead

The ex-girlfriend the man who recorded and uploaded video in which he shot and killed a 74-year-old man is “trying to pick up the pieces” of her life.

Steve Stephens blamed his former girlfriend, Joy Lane, for the killing.

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“The hashtags Joy Lane, Joy Lane massacre ... I don’t know if I know how to be Joy Lane anymore. I don’t know how to pick up all the pieces of my world at the moment,” Lane told WJW-TV. “I’ve got a lot of negative comments. I’ve been called almost every cuss word in the book. I’ve been told that I’m the one who should have died, he should have killed me.”

Stephens, who dated Lane for several years, mentioned her moments before shooting Robert Godwin Sr. on Sunday, saying, “She’s the reason why all this is about to happen to you.” He also made Godwin say her name before gunning him down.

Since Stephens’ suicide on Tuesday, Lane has received support from many close to her, but also from two strangers: two of Godwin’s daughters, Tonya R. Godwin-Baines and Debbie D. Godwin. Lane met the sisters, and the three women hugged, cried and prayed together, WJW-TV reported.

“I feel bad. The last thing he would have said is my name, and he didn’t know me or why he was saying, and that’s been difficult,” Lane told the women.

The Godwin family, however, doesn’t blame her for the tragic incident.

“It’s not your fault,” Godwin-Baines told Lane. “We don’t hold any ill feelings towards you.”

After Godwin’s murder, Lane was placed in protective care while authorities launched a nationwide hunt for Stephens over the course of several days.

Lane said she tried to call Stephens after he posted the video on Facebook, but he didn’t answer. 

She told WJW-TV she and Stephens had once looked at engagement rings, but they recently “mutually parted ways,” in part because he had a gambling issue. She said the two remained friends. Stephens called Lane the day before the murder to tell her he had quit his job and planned to move out of state.

Stephens took his own life on Tuesday as police attempted to pull him over.

Godwin was the father of 10 children. 

See video of Lane’s meeting with Godwin’s daughters at WJW-TV.

This undated photo provided by the Cleveland Police shows Steve Stephens. Stephens broadcast the fatal shooting of another man live on Facebook on Sunday, April 16, 2017. (Cleveland Police via AP)(AP)
Brianna Chambers contributed to this report.

Pregnant woman fatally shot by boyfriend trying to end relationship, police say

Published: Sunday, December 10, 2017 @ 11:39 PM

A man fatally shot his pregnant girlfriend in an attempt to end the relationship, police say. (Photo: Fox13Memphis.com)
A man fatally shot his pregnant girlfriend in an attempt to end the relationship, police say. (Photo: Fox13Memphis.com)

A man fatally shot his pregnant girlfriend Saturday in an attempt to end the relationship, police said.

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Keosha Miller, 22, was shot around around 6:59 p.m. in the Faronia Square Townhomes, Memphis police said. 

Brandon Freeman was seen by witnesses, fleeing the residence at a high rate of speed, police said. The witnesses called Freeman to check and see if he was OK. He told them "some random guys tried to shoot he and his girlfriend."

Freeman later returned to the scene and moved evidence there, police said. 

Freeman later admitted to police that he shot and killed Miller because he was unsure if she was pregnant with his baby and it was the easiest way he could think of to get out of the relationship.

“There are a number of things you could’ve done to get out of that relationship. You got abortion and a number of things other than taking a baby’s life,” a neighbor said. 

Memphis police told FOX13 that Miller was three months pregnant when she was shot and killed by Freeman. The fetus did not survive the shooting.

Freeman was arrested and charged with first-degree murder; he is scheduled to appear in court on Monday morning.

‘I just fired one': 84-year-old man shoots, kills home intruder

Published: Friday, December 08, 2017 @ 10:59 AM

Intruder Killed By 85-Year-Old Man

An elderly man shot and killed one of two intruders at his home early Friday morning in Ellport, Lawrence County, police said.

The 84-year-old man, Don Lutz, was confronted by the intruders about 1:30 a.m. at his Jamison Avenue home, authorities said. An altercation followed.

>>RAW VIDEO: Man describes home invasion shooting

“I just fired one. It was in the dark. He attacked me and he was up close and I shot him,” Lutz said. “They jumped me and we both went on the floor. I scuffled with them on the floor and the one guy rolled over dead and the other guy, he jumped up and went out the door.”

Police investigate after an 85-year-old man's home was broken into. Police said that the man shot and killed one of the intruders. The other ran off.(WPXI.com)

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Police are searching for the second intruder who ran off.

“The other one, maybe the bullet hit him, too. I don’t know. I hope so,” Lutz said.

Lutz said he keeps his gun under his pillow. He’s a little sore, but otherwise in good spirits after the ordeal.

Investigators believe Lutz might have been targeted.

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Intruder killed by 84-year-old man was family member

Published: Saturday, December 09, 2017 @ 10:40 PM

Elderly Man Kills Intruder Who Was A Family Member

The intruder shot and killed by an elderly homeowner in Lawrence County early Friday morning has been identified as the shooter's nephew-in-law. 

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Investigators told Channel 11 the man has been identified as Dennis Mercadante, 49.

Mercadante was identified by using facial recognition by Pennsylvania State Police. 

Investigators said Don Lutz, 84, was confronted by two intruders, Mercadante and another suspect, at about 1:30 a.m. Friday at his Jamison Avenue home, and an altercation followed.

“I just fired one. It was in the dark. He attacked me and he was up close and I shot him,” Lutz said.

“They jumped me and we both went on the floor. I scuffled with them on the floor and the one guy rolled over dead and the other guy, he jumped up and went out the door.”

Police are still searching for the second suspect, who ran off. 

“The other one, maybe the bullet hit him, too. I don’t know. I hope so,” Lutz said.

US deportation flight returns from Africa with all on board

Published: Sunday, December 10, 2017 @ 10:33 PM

File photo. Photo: (Curtis Compton/The Atlanta Journal-Constitution)
File photo. Photo: (Curtis Compton/The Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

The government’s efforts to deport 92 Somali nationals did not go as planned this week, when the flight encountered some snags in Senegal and returned to the U.S. with all on board.

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U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement released a statement Saturday, saying relief flight crew members were “unable to get sufficient rest due to issues with their hotel in Dakar.” 

“The aircraft, including the detainees and crew on board, remained parked at the airport to allow the relief crew time to rest,” ICE said in its statement. “During this time, the aircraft maintained power and air conditioning, and was stocked with sufficient food and water. Various logistical options were explored, and ultimately ICE decided to reschedule the mission to Somalia and return to the United States with all 92 detainees. No further details are available at this time.” 

Omar Shekhey, the executive director for the Somali American Community Center in Clarkston, said as many as nine of those on the flight lived in Georgia. The Star Tribune reported as least four were from Minnesota.