Cleveland shooting: Numerous fake GoFundMe pages spring up to support victim

At least nine pages claiming to support the family of a Cleveland man who was shot dead on a Facebook livestream have been set up.

Seventy-four-year-old Robert Godwin Sr was walking home from an Easter meal with his family when he was shot and killed on Sunday (local time).

The suspect, Steve Stephens, remains at large and police fear he managed to escape Ohio and could have crossed into another state.

Mr Godwin's family said he was a father of 10, grandfather to 14, who loved fishing and going for walks.

Since the killing, at least nine GoFundMe pages have popped up online, claiming to be there to support Mr Godwin's family.

But none of the pages were actually created by the family.

One of the more popular pages, which has already raised more than US$48,000, was created by a teenager in Arizona - who neglected to mention the fact he had no link with the family until, several hours later, he was called out by donators.

He's since clarified that neither he nor the page are associated with the family, but says he's working with GoFundMe to make contact with the family.

But it hasn't stopped people with open hearts pouring in and sharing their messages.

"I am so sorry for your loss. Your family seems very strong, but I hope you all find peace," donator Nicholas Karimzadeh wrote.

GoFundMe says that page has now been verified by the organiserand the family, so any money donated through it will reach Mr Godwin's family.

Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams warned people to be cautious when donating, as several pages claim to be associated with the family but weren't legitimate.

Other pages included one claiming to be run by his daughter, and another by his niece. Both have since been shut down.

But even if you did donate to a fraudulent page, GoFundMe offers a guarantee that funds raised will get to the recipient listed on the page - even if the creator doesn't have any connection.

"We want to make sure that our community feels secure during every step of the giving experience so more people can get help," it said.