Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg extended his condolences to the family and friends of Robert Godwin Sr. during his F8 conference. In his speech, Zuckerberg addressed that Facebook and his team have a lot of work to do to prevent tragedies like the Cleveland shooting from happening again.
On Tuesday, Mark Zuckerberg held his Facebook for Developers, also known as the F8 conference. During the said meeting, the Facebook CEO talks about the tragic death of Robert Godwin Sr. which was uploaded in the popular social media platform by the “Facebook Killer” himself, Steve Stephens.
Mark Zuckerberg openly admitted that Robert Godwin Sr.’s death reminded them that Facebook’s system still needs a lot of improvement especially in video uploading and reporting. The 32-year-old billionaire also promised to do necessary measures to prevent such tragic acts from occurring again.
“Our hearts go out to the family and friends of Robert Godwin Sr. We have a lot of work and we will keep doing all we can to prevent tragedies like this from happening.”
It can be recalled that Steve Stephens, now dubbed as the “Facebook Killer,” uploaded a gruesome video of how he murdered the 74-year-old Robert Godwin Sr. In the live video, he approached the victim in the Glenville neighborhood, apparently at random. The distressed suspect then shot the old man in the head after instructing him to say, “Joy Lane,” his ex-girlfriend’s name.
The disturbing video was posted on Sunday and remained on Facebook for more than two hours. The social media giant faced a backlash for not removing the video sooner. However, Justin Osofsky, vice president of Facebook’s Global Operations department, defended their timeline of actions in a statement released on Monday.
“It was a horrific crime — one that has no place on Facebook, and goes against our policies and everything we stand for,” Osofsky stated. The official also promised their users that they are “constantly exploring ways” to make the social networking site “a safe environment.”
“We know we need to do better. In addition to improving our reporting flows, we are constantly exploring ways that new technologies can help us make sure Facebook is a safe environment. We prioritize reports with serious safety implications for our community, and are working on making that review process go even faster.”
Facebook also released a “Timeline of Events” intended to provide details on what really transpired during that period. It also addressed confusion as to why it took so long for them to take down the video. Check out the timeline below.
11:09AM PDT — First video, of intent to murder, uploaded. Not reported to Facebook.
11:11AM PDT — Second video, of shooting, uploaded.
11:22AM PDT — Suspect confesses to murder while using Live, is live for five minutes.
11:27AM PDT — Live ends, and Live video is first reported shortly after.
12:59PM PDT — Video of shooting is first reported.
1:22PM PDT — Suspect’s account disabled; all videos no longer visible to public.
Based on the given timeline, Godwin Sr.’s murder video was active on Facebook for almost two hours. Facebook was only able to remove the video almost twenty minutes after it was first reported.
On Tuesday, the same day as Mark Zuckerberg’s speech, Steve Stephens was tracked down by the police after employees of McDonald’s in Pennsylvania alerted 911. Apparently, the suspect stopped by the drive-thru and ordered 20 Chicken McNuggets and large fries.
According to reports, a female employee recognized Steve Stephens when he came up to the window. The McDonald’s staff, who confirmed with other co-workers that it was him, stalled the suspect by giving his chicken nuggets order but put the fries on hold. However, Steve Stephens wouldn’t wait any longer.
“He just took his nuggets and said, ‘I have to go,’ and he drove off.”
Shortly after the suspect drove off the drive-thru, authorities were able to track him down, reports claim. State police reportedly chased him for less than two miles before executing their tactic — ramming the rear of the suspect’s car to make it lose control. That is when Steve Stephens decided to end his own life.
“As the vehicle was spinning out of control from the PIT maneuver, Stephens pulled a pistol and shot himself in the head.”
On Monday, the family of Robert Godwin Sr. already expressed their forgiveness to Steve Stephens and urged him to surrender.
[Featured Image by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images]