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Twinsburg Police: Alleged killer Steve Stephens' ex-girlfriend lives in Twinsburg

Twinsburg School District sees increased protection, extracurriculars still a go

By Andrew Schunk Twinsburg Bulletin Editor Published: April 18, 2017 11:45 AM
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TWINSBURG -- The ex-girlfriend of accused Facebook murderer Steven Stephens lists a Ridge Meadow Court address as her home, according to Twinsburg police, and Stephens may have been at the home recently.

Police are guarding the home, located at an apartment complex off East Idlewood Drive, and have increased their presence at the city's five schools today, according to Twinsburg Police Chief Chris Noga.

"It's been a busy couple days for us. We're asking everyone to be vigilant," Noga said. "If you see something, say something. We don't know where he is, and they are looking."

Some reports have indicated Stephens, 37, was at the ex-girlfriend's Twinsburg home recently, perhaps as few as a day before his Easter Sunday Facebook rant on the couple's breakup and alleged murder of Robert Godwin Sr. of Cleveland, though Noga could not confirm the reports.

"I understand that the suspect either frequented or recently lived in the city of Twinsburg," Twinsburg City School District Superintendent Kathryn Powers said in an April 17 Blackboard Connect message to district parents.

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The department has added "additional protection" for the Twinsburg School District, at Bissell Elementary School, Wilcox Primary School, Dodge Intermediate School, R.B. Chamberlin Middle School and Twinsburg High School. Noga has been to the schools, and school resource Officers Ron Fruscella (Twinsburg High School) and Greg Kopniske (R.B. Chamberlin) remain on site.

"We are pulling from our patrol to provide a presence," Noga said. "Safety and security are our mission."

Powers sent out the Blackboard Connect message to all parents April 17, asking parents and students to be vigilant, but to proceed with normalcy. All extracurricular activities for April 17 went forward and those set for April 18 are proceeding as planned, Powers said.

"Given the fact that Sunday's tragic event raised the concerns and anxiety of our residents, and as an extra precaution, the Twinsburg Police Department will provide additional police presence at this afternoon's athletic events as well as throughout the school day tomorrow. This will include additional police presence during recess for our elementary school students," the Blackboard Connect message reads.

Powers said she received calls from parents April 17 who were concerned about "how to help protect our kids."

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"We made the decision to officially request an increased presence from police," Powers said. "We are in contact with local authorities, and we have our emergency management plan. Thanks to the assistance from the Twinsburg police, it's been business as usual. There's nothing more important to any of us than our children."

Godwin Sr., 74, of Cleveland, was allegedly shot by Stephens at 635 East 93rd Street in Cleveland, apparently at random, according to Stephens himself on Facebook. A warrant has been issued for aggravated murder in the matter, according to Cleveland police.

The manhunt is ongoing in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Indiana and Michigan, according to Cleveland police.

People are asked to be on the lookout for a white Ford Fusion with a temporary tag. Stephens is 6-feet, one-inch tall, 244 pounds, bald, and was last seen with a beard. A $50,000 reward is offered by the FBI for information leading to Stephens' arrest.

Cleveland Police said the morning of April 18 that hundreds of tips are pouring in, and there is a tipline at 1-800-CALL-FBI.

Email: aschunk@recordpub.com

Phone: 330-541-9424

Twitter: @twinsburgohio


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