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Transport driver fired after inmate escapes custody

Posted: Updated:
Michael Ritter

East St. Louis, Missouri -- A prisoner transport van driver has been fired as police in East St. Louis and the surrounding area continue to search for an escaped fugitive who was being transported from Oklahoma to Texas Monday morning. There are many more questions than answers as police work to figure out what happened.

East St. Louis police say a driver working for Guard Force International INC., was transporting two prisoners. One of those prisoners was 33-year-old Brian Jordan who was charged with unauthorized use of a car in January of 2018 in Oklahoma. Jordan was also wanted in Texas for a parole violation for possession of methamphetamine.

According to police, a stop at the Casino Queen in East St. Louis occurred early Monday morning while transporting the two prisoners. While waiting to hear from his manager, the prisoner transport driver allowed the two men to take a shower in a room at the hotel. While the second man was in the shower, the guard reportedly fell asleep. Police say the driver did not have the fugitives properly restrained when he went to sleep. Around 1:30 a.m., after 30-45 minutes of sleep, police say the driver noticed Jordan was missing along with $5,200 in cash, according to the police report.

Gordon Brooks, CEO of Guard Force International, said he believes they went to the hotel at the Casino Queen and were not there to gamble. Wednesday morning he told News 4 the driver had been fired. Brooks said the driver violated protocol by staying at the hotel with inmates, which he said was "not normal."

Brooks also said the van was in St. Louis after the driver dropped off inmates in St. Joseph, Missouri. The driver reportedly came to St. Louis to "meet up with another team" but that never happened, according to Brooks.

News 4 spoke to the Chief of Police in East St. Louis. He said his department interviewed the second inmate, who did not escape. Here are some of their findings:

The driver stopped at Lumiere Casino and left the two prisoners inside the van

The driver then took the prisoners to visit some of his family in the area

After that, they went to the Casino Queen to eat pizza and got a room

Jordan was last seen walking towards the Eads Bridge early Monday morning, according to police. Despite noticing Jordan missing at 1:30 a.m., the driver did not contact police until 6:40 a.m. Monday morning. It is unknown why the driver was in the St. Louis area, Brooks said.

Brian Jordan remains missing as of Wednesday morning as police continue their search.


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