Man in custody walks away from van Wednesday on drive back to prison, agency says

An Oregon State Police trooper and car (Wikimedia Commons).

A man in custody walked away from a state Department of Corrections van Wednesday while being returned to a Salem prison, according to the agency.

Jordan Stephens, 27, was being taken from a work crew assignment back to Santiam Correctional Institution when the driver of the van stopped at a traffic light between Liberty and High Streets in Salem.

Stephens then opened the van door and fled, the corrections department said in a news release.

He was last seen at approximately 3:15 p.m. Wednesday, June 15.

The location where the van stopped was about six miles from Santiam Correctional Institution.

Stephens weighs 180 pounds and is 6-foot-3, with hazel eyes and brown hair. He was wearing blue jeans and an orange-blue shirt, according to the release.

Stephens entered corrections department custody on December 14, 2021. His earliest release date is August 24, 2023.

He pleaded guilty to three counts of unauthorized use of a vehicle in Jefferson, Douglas, and Marion counties, court records showed.

Stephens was in custody at Santiam Correctional Institution, a minimum-security prison in Salem that houses around 440 adults in custody within four years of being released. He was working on an Oregon Department of Transportation work crew, according to the release.

The corrections department said anyone with information him should contact the Oregon State Police at 1-800-452-7888, the non-emergency number of their local police department, or the corrections department’s Fugitive Apprehension Unit at 503-569-0734.

Jordan Stephens (Oregon Department of Corrections)

-Ardeshir Tabrizian