‘Armed and dangerous’ inmate walks away from federal prison camp in Millington

MILLINGTON, Tenn. — The Shelby County Sheriff’s Office said an inmate who “walked away” from a Millington prison should be considered armed and dangerous.

In a press release Saturday afternoon, officials with the Federal Prison Bureau said Travon Gardner, 40, was “discovered missing” from the Federal Prison Camp on Navy Road just after 6 p.m. Friday.

But WREG didn’t find out until we heard an alert on the police scanners around 1:30 a.m. Saturday – more than seven hours later – and people in the area said they were never told a man considered to be armed and dangerous was on the loose.

“Well, it’s scary,” said Sue Manning, who lives a few blocks away. “Wouldn’t you think it’d be scary?”

The prison camp is a minimum-security facility which houses people convicted of non-violent crimes.

“That’s mostly white-collar crime over there,” said neighbor Edward Mynatt. “As far as I know, there’s no hardened criminals over there.”

Gardner was serving 25 years for drug and gun charges.

Neither prison officials nor Millington Police have said exactly how he was able to walk away from the prison camp.

But even though authorities warned Gardner should be considered armed and dangerous, people who live in the neighborhood tell WREG they had no idea an inmate had even escaped until we told them.

“I think it’s a little bit lax on their judgement,” Manning said. “I think as soon as he’s escaped, they know he’s armed and dangerous, they should put it on the news for the people in Millington or around this area to be alert.”

Neighbors said they often see prisoners doing lawn work and picking up trash along Navy Road.

“Very seldom do I see them out there by themselves,” Mynatt said. “Sometimes they’ll be out there cutting grass and there’ll be somebody in a truck watching them.”

Manning has seen the same thing.

“There’s a guy sitting in the truck,” she said. “I guess that’s him watching them – supposed to be.”

Authorities haven’t answered our questions about what Gardner was doing when he escaped.

Prison officials said he is 5’9″ and 155 pounds with brown eyes and black hair.

Investigators didn’t get a car description and aren’t sure which direction Gardner could be traveling, but said he is from the Nashville area.

The Federal Bureau of Prisons said the U.S. Marshals are investigating.

Less than two weeks ago, accused murderer Antoine Adams escaped from a Marshall County, Mississippi jail, and still hasn’t been caught.

Federal prison camp in Millington