The suspect accused of live streaming his fatal shooting of a 74-year-old man on Sunday said in a Facebook post prior to the killing that his financial troubles left him without options.
According to Cleveland.com, Steve Stephens, a 37-year-old Cleveland social services worker, was evicted in January for not paying his rent. Meanwhile, a debt collector began garnishing his paycheck last month to recover nearly $1,800 in back rent from a previous eviction.
The two eviction cases occurred less than two years after Stephens emerged from personal bankruptcy, federal court records show. When he filed for bankruptcy in January 2015, Stephens declared more than $35,000 in debts. His largest debt was $21,000 owed on a loan for a 2007 Dodge Charger, but he also owed more than $5,300 on his student loans and another $2,600 to a debt collector over unpaid credit card debt. He owed another $2,600 to a variety of cash advance and payday lenders.
“You know, being with [his ex-girlfriend] drove me crazy, started making me gamble. I lost everything. I lost everything I have. I don’t have [expletive]. I’m out of options,” Stephens said in the Facebook post before the killing.