Family of Facebook Live murder victim sues social media giant, citing negligence

Family of Facebook Live murder victim sues social media giant, citing negligence
(Source: GoFundMe)
Steve Stephens, 37 (Source: Facebook)
Steve Stephens, 37 (Source: Facebook)

CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - The family of Robert Godwin Sr. has filed a civil lawsuit against Facebook in the wake of Godwin's murder being posted on Facebook last spring.

The lawsuit was filed Jan. 19 In Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court by Godwin's daughter Debbie, who is the executrix of his estate.

The Facebook Live shooting took place in April 2017 in the 600 block of East 93rd Street when Godwin, 74, died after being shot in the head by Stephens.

The defendants include Facebook Inc., Facebook Payments Inc., Facebook Services, Atlas Solutions, Crowdtangle and the executrix of the estate of the suspect, Steve Stephens, who killed himself before he could be arrested.

The lawsuit alleges negligence, saying Facebook had access to data and information from Steve Stephens, and says they should have known that Stephens was a threat.

They say Facebook should have been able to alert authorities to Stephens' violent intentions.

The lawsuit says Facebook was aware of threats and statements made by Stephens, and failed to report it to police -- leading to Robert Godwin's murder.

Return to Cleveland 19 for more updates on this developing story.

Copyright 2018 WOIO. All rights reserved.