Bury St Edmunds: Prisoner Escapes

26 January 2012, 05:46 | Updated: 26 January 2012, 07:15

Police have started a manhunt after two prison officers arriving at the West Suffolk Hospital with a prisoner being transported for treatment were threatened at gunpoint and forced to release him.

Officers were contacted just after 6.50pm yesterday evening, Wednesday 25th January, by staff at the Accident & Emergency (A & E) reception of the West Suffolk Hospital at Hardwick Lane in Bury St Edmunds who reported they could see a man with a gun outside the A & E department.

They said the man was pointing the weapon at two prison officers.

Moments later police received a second call from the prison officers, from HMP Highpoint, who said they had a gun pulled on them by a man who had confronted them as they had arrived at A & E with a prisoner who had been stabbed in an incident at the prison.

Both the prisoner, who has been named as Andrew Fardon, and the man with the gun had then run away across the car park.

No one was hurt in the incident.

Fardon is described as white, aged 26, with a shaved head and was wearing a dark blue baseball cap, light coloured jumper that was padded on the right side due to the injury to the shoulder.

The man with the gun is described as white, in his mid 40s, around 5ft 8ins tall, of stocky build, possibly with a Scottish accent and was wearing a white top and blue jeans.

It's thought they may have escaped in a dark coloured car.

Police have started a comprehensive search of the area and are liaising with other agencies and talking to witnesses.

Farndon was serving an indefinite prison sentence, with a minimum of three years before being considered for parole, after being sentenced at Coventry Crown Court in 2007 for GBH with intent, dangerous driving and aggravated vehicle taking.

Police have received information that Farndon had a goatee beard at the time of his escape and his hair is longer than pictured.

Officers are asking anyone with information about the incident or where Farden is now to call Suffolk Police as soon as possible - using 999 if necessary for sightings or 101 to pass on information.

Police are advising members of the public not to approach either of the men but to call officers straight away.