Lakewood OH

Cleveland man arrested in connection with shooting

Robert Godwin (Photo courtesy Westlake Police Department)

By Kevin Kelley

Westlake police arrested a 74-year-old Cleveland man in connection with the April 5 incident in which five gunshots were fired at an office building.

Robert Godwin was arrested Wednesday afternoon at his Cleveland residence, Westlake police Capt. Guy Turner said. Police took possession of a .38-caliber revolver during a search of Godwin’s home, to which the suspect consented, Turner said. A ballistics test of the weapon has not yet been made, Turner added.

Godwin was in the Westlake Police Department jail as of Thursday afternoon.

Around noon Saturday, five shots were fired over a 35-minute period at a Center Ridge Road office building. Two persons were in an adjacent business when the shooting began, and a police officer was inside when the final shot was fired, police said.

According to police, Godwin had a dispute in 2012 with Elios Financial Group, one of three firms located at the building. Personnel from the company called police two years ago when Godwin phoned the business to complain, saying he was about to come to the office in person, Turner told West Life. No confrontation took place at the time, Turner said.

When Godwin was initially question by police Monday, he denied any involvement in the gunfire. Turner declined to say what led police to arrest him two days later. Godwin then “admitted involvement,” Turner said, and turned over the revolver to police.

Two of Godwin’s vehicles were impounded by police as evidence, Turner said. Police believe the gunshots were fired at the office building from a vehicle during several passes along Center Ridge Road. Police have not determined which of the two impounded vehicles was used, Turner said, and they have not ruled out the possibility that the suspect had an accomplice during the shooting.

Godwin has no criminal record aside from minor traffic violations in Cleveland, Turner said.

No charges have been filed against Godwin as of Thursday afternoon, Turner said. The least serious charge he faces is discharging a firearm, a misdemeanor, Turner said. Felony-level charges are likely to be filed, he added.

Godwin is scheduled to be arraigned Friday on firearms-related charges in Rocky River Municipal Court Friday, Turner said, adding that the case will likely be handled by the Cuyahoga County prosecutor’s office.



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