The man suspected of shooting dead the sleeping daughter of an ex-Kentucky lawmaker is a ‘loner’ and military dropout whose Marine Corps training could help him evade police, a former mentor tells DailyMail.com.
Shannon Vince Gilday, 23, is suspected of killing former state representative C. Wesley Morgan’s daughter, 32-year-old Jordan Morgan, in an early morning home invasion Tuesday at the family’s $6.5 million Richmond home.
Her shocking murder hit her loved ones hard, with her mother Lisa Foster saying Wednesday that she, too, wished her own life would end.
‘I’m asking my Christian friends to please pray that God takes me home today,’ Foster wrote on Facebook. ‘I want to die.’
A statewide mandate is underway to find the alleged killer, who police say is considered armed and dangerous.
Jayo Alforque, who mentored Gilday after he joined the Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) in 2017 at the University of Hawaii, described the murder suspect as an outlier who had trouble making friends.
‘Like all freshmen, they’re weird at first,’ Alforque told DailyMail.com on Friday, adding: ‘He’s funny and willing to learn, he was always a loner that is why I took him under my wings and showed him how to be social.’
Shannon Vince Gilday, 23, remains on the loose after he allegedly shot and killed a lawyer in a home invasion early Tuesday
Jordan Morgan’s mother Lisa Foster said that news of her daughter’s death has been so painful that she, too, wished to die
Gilday joined the Reserve Officer Training Corps in 2017, but quit when he fled Hawaii to avoid a drug dealer he owed money to, a former mentor said
Gilday is the subject of a statewide manhunt
He said it’s possible the skills Gilday learned in training could help him remain on the lam.
‘We were taught to be “infantry”’ Alforque said. ‘Camouflage, stealth and tactical.’
Gilday could be short tempered at times, Alforque said, and was ‘easily triggered when he couldn’t finish a work or task I gave him while I was a senior Cadet.’
On one occasion, Gilday became so aggressive during a house party that Alforque said he had to ‘choke him out to sleep’ to bring him under control.
He left Hawaii a few years ago (Alforque believes it was around 2019) over unpaid drug debts, his friend said.
He dropped out of the program and flew back to Kentucky out of ‘depression and fear.’
A spokesman confirmed that a person of the same name was a student at the University of Hawaii’s Mānoa campus from spring 2014 through summer 2018, but did not earn a degree.
A year after leaving Hawaii, Gilday reached out to his old pal to say he was settled into his home state of Kentucky.
‘He said he’s going to do better there and he going to be a better man,’ Alforque said. ‘That’s the last time I talked to him.’
Jordan Morgan, described by friends as a popular and passionate young lawyer, was shot and killed in a home invasion early Tuesday morning
She’s pictured at right with her father, former state representative C. Wesley Morgan, who was wounded
Kentucky State Police said Gilday shot and killed Morgan’s daughter, Jordan Morgan, 32, while she was asleep. The Madison County Coroner’s Office later confirmed that Jordan Morgan had been shot ‘more than once’.
Gilday then allegedly ‘confronted’ Wesley Morgan, and the two exchanged gunfire before he fled in a white Toyota Corolla.
Wesley Morgan and his wife, Jordan’s stepmother, sustained injuries in the shooting and were taken to a local hospital, where they are recovering.
Police have now issued a warrant for Gilday’s arrest as he remains on the run. He is charged with murder, first-degree burglary, first-degree criminal mischief, and two counts of attempted murder.
While police hunt him down, Morgan’s friends are left to mourn the ‘passionate’ and popular victim.
Following the shootings, Gilday allegedly fled the scene in a white Toyota Corolla
Morgan (right) was in the process of becoming a licensed realtor so she could work with her mom Lisa Foster (left)
‘Her mother Lisa is not doing well at all,’ a friend said. ‘… as anyone can imagine’
‘Jordan was very passionate about her family, animals and politics,’ her friend Amanda Marcum told DailyMail.com. ‘Not only was so gorgeous on the outside but she was just as sweet and generous on the inside.’
A successful attorney, Morgan was working on obtaining her real estate license so that she could work with her realtor mom Lisa Foster and stepdad, Don Foster, her friend said.
‘This senseless crime will shake our small town for many years,’ Marcum said, adding: ‘Her mother Lisa is not doing well at all… as anyone can imagine.’
Foster said her daughter had ‘no enemies’ as police identified the man suspected of killing her.
‘She was absolutely a wonderful person and the smartest person I ever knew,’ Foster told the Lexington Herald-Leader. ‘She was always doing for other people, so selfless, funny and like a breath of fresh air to be around.’
‘She was a momma’s girl and always told me every night and every morning she loved me. She had no enemies.’
Authorities said on Thursday they had some clues about a possible motive behind the shooting, the Lexington Herald-Leader reports, but they cannot confirm anything until they capture the suspect.
They did, however, say that they do not believe Jordan was the intended target, according to Lex 18, as a preliminary investigation found no links between her and Gilday.
Jordan was shot multiple times in the home invasion early Tuesday morning and died on the scene
The incident unfolded at Morgan’s $6.5million mansion in Richmond, Kentucky, pictured
Kentucky State Police have previously announced they received a call at 4:30am Tuesday about a shooting at Morgan’s mansion.
At first, they were unsure how many suspects were involved in the home invasion and shooting, but after receiving an ‘incredible tip’ from outside the wealthy area, authorities now say Gilday, of Taylor Mill, Kentucky, forced his way into the mansion and opened fire.
He was seen on surveillance footage entering the home wearing either camouflage or ‘tactical style’ pants and a jacket, a dark-colored hoodie, gloves and a light-colored facemask, authorities announced at a news briefing Thursday.
They said he may have been injured in the gunfight with Wesley, authorities announced on Thursday, and is believed to be driving a white Toyota Corolla with minor damage to the front grill.
Gilday is described as being about six feet and about 167 pounds, with brown hair and blue eyes.
He is considered ‘armed and dangerous,’ Kentucky State Police warned, and urged anyone on his whereabouts to call the Kentucky State Police Post 7 at (859) 623 – 2404.
Wesley said he is now recovering from his wounds but will never recover from the loss of his first-born daughter
On Wednesday, Wesley, 71, broke down in tears as he spoke about losing his daughter.
He told FOX 56 he is recovering well from the gunshot wounds, but will never recover emotionally from the loss of Jordan.
‘I’m heartbroken,’ he said as he audibly started crying. ‘I can’t understand why, and would give anything on this Earth if it would have been me rather than her.
‘I’d much rather it’d been me.’
Wesley Morgan said he was with his daughter, watching an episode of 1883, a Western-style television drama series on Paramount+, just hours before the shooting.
‘She got up, put her arm around me and said “I love you, Daddy,” and I said “I love you, too,”‘ he recalled to the news station. ‘And then she went to bed and that son of a b**** killed her.’
He added that his ‘life will never be the same,’ saying: ‘Until the day I die, I will think of her, yes I will.’
Jordan, left, was described by friends and family as kind, loving and intelligent. She is pictured at the Kentucky Derby
Jordan’s mother, meanwhile, said she had no enemies.
‘She was absolutely a wonderful person and the smartest person I ever knew,’ Lisa Foster told the Herald-Leader on Thursday.
‘She was always doing for other people, so selfless, funny and like a breath of fresh air to be around.
‘She was a momma’s girl, and always told me every night and every morning she loved me,’ Foster added. ‘She had no enemies.’
Foster said Jordan would text her every night, saying ‘I love you night, night,’ and in the morning she would send her mother a message saying ‘Good morning Muffin Mouse, I love you,’ referencing one of her favorite childhood stories.
‘And I would say ‘Good morning sunshine, I love you have a blessed day.’
Jordan Morgan previously made headlines in 2017, when she publicly accused State Rep. Michael Meredith of sending her inappropriate text messages as part of a sexual harassment settlement involving four House Republicans.
She said at the time that she started receiving a number of messages from Meredith after she worked on Republican Matt Bevin’s successful 2015 campaign for Kentucky governor and worked with him for a year-and-a-half afterwards as a member of his communications team.
Jordan accused State Rep. Michael Meredith (pictured) of sending her inappropriate text messages in 2017
Morgan met Meredith, she told the Courier-Journal, when she and the rest of Bevin’s campaign staff were celebrating his victory.
She said Meredith’s behavior was a ‘little too friendly,’ so she left the event. But afterwards, he sent her a message on Facebook saying: ‘Where’d you go, beauty?’
Over the ensuing year and a half, she claimed, she received a number of messages from Meredith, including one that read: ‘You are like six foot tall with jet black hair and high heels and can probably find some way to persuade anyone about anything if force is needed lol.’
None of the text messages was ‘too extreme,’ she said; they were ‘just kind of flirty,’ but they struck her as ‘inappropriate,’ particularly because Meredith was married and in elected office.
‘He wasn’t my boss, but he was in a position of authority,’ she said. ‘You don’t want to make an enemy of a state representative, so you just laugh it off.’
Morgan said she only came forward with the inappropriate texts after it was revealed that four House Republicans were involved in a secret sexual harassment settlement with another female staffer.
The scandal cost former House Speaker Jeff Hoover and Meredith their leadership positions, but Meredith was reinstated as chairman of the House Local Government Committee one year later.
Jordan previously made headlines in 2017 when she publicly accused State Rep. Michael Meredith of sending her inappropriate text messages. She is seen here with her dad at her law school graduation
Jordan recently joined the Reminger law office in Lexington
Jordan, meanwhile, left the world of politics to become an assistant commonwealth’s attorney prosecuting felonies, based in Boone County. She had recently joined the Reminger law office in Lexington.
‘Reminger wishes to express its sincere condolences to the Morgan family,’ the firm said in a statement. ‘She was a pleasant colleague and a promising attorney. We are shocked and saddened at the circumstances surrounding her unfortunate death.’
Her Facebook profile was filled with memes, photos of her with friends and family, and photos of her small dog – Gucci.
Friends and family describe her as kind, loving and intelligent, with her niece, Hayleigh Burrows, who was only 11 years younger than Jordan, saying: ‘She was just so great. Generous, selfless, funny, so funny, [and] loving.
‘She’s the queen of networking,’ Burrows told Lex 18. ‘If I ever needed to know anyone, she knew someone who could get me connected.’
Burrows said she decided to follow in Jordan’s footsteps, pursuing a pre-law degree at the University of Kentucky, and is planning to take the LSAT this summer.
‘She was always pushing me to do my best,’ Burrows said of her aunt, whom she described as ‘more of a best friend.’
She said she is upset that her aunt will not be around to meet any of her future boyfriends or attend her wedding, but, ‘I firmly believe she’s in a better place and happy. So that kind of helps me get through this.’
Wesley is well-known for his eccentricities after he listed his mansion for sale with an in-ground bunker
Wesley served one term as a state representative for Richmond and Berea in Madison County
Wesley, who served one term as a state representative for Richmond and Berea in Madison County, is also known for his quirks.
While in office, Wesley, who owns several Kentucky liquor stores, was charged with illegally transporting alcohol across county lines.
To do so was illegal at the time without a transporter’s license.
A judge ultimately dropped the charges, after state law was changed.
He went on to unsuccessfully challenge Senator Mitch McConnell in the state’s Republican primary in 2020.
The home was said to be ‘the most secure home on the market’ and built to withstand an earthquake
The 2,000-square foot, steel-enforced bunker itself is said to be worth $3 million
When the home was listed for sale it was advertised complete with a nuclear bunker and able to withstand nuclear attack and the strongest of earthquakes. Pictured, the food reserves
The bunker also includes an ‘escape tunnel’ to an undisclosed location
Last year, Wesley listed his 14,300-square-foot, six bedroom, seven bathroom mansion for sale.
It comes complete with a saltwater pool, steam sauna and heated floors set on 200 acres of lakefront property.
However, perhaps its most unusual feature is a 2,000-square-foot, fully stocked underground bunker set behind a huge steel and concrete door.
The $6.5million listing advertised the home as being able to withstand nuclear attack and the strongest of earthquakes with the bunker alone valued at $3 million.
Wesley started building the bunker more than a decade ago, following the election of President Barack Obama.
He said at the time that he ‘could see the handwriting on the wall that Obama was trying to change our country into a socialist country,’ and with hundreds of tons of chemical agents stored at the Blue Grass Army Depot, south of Richmond, he decided it would be wise to build a bunker.
‘I saw the bad stuff that was going on in the world,’ he told Kentucky.com last year. ‘And I think there’s a lot of bad stuff going on in the world right now.
‘If we don’t get our act together, we’re gonna end up in a civil war.’
He said he and his wife, Lindsey, lived in the bunker – which can hold up to 30 people with separate bedrooms, a kitchen and a living room – for several years as construction on the house above was completed.
Zillow described the home as being ‘the most secure home on the market in this country,’ and it comes with an ‘escape tunnel’ to an undisclosed location.
‘I just wanted someplace safe,’ Wesley said when the home was on the market.