Man charged with shooting death of Cleveland woman

A 55-year-old Cleveland man, Phillip Simmons, is facing a first-degree felony murder charge after police say he fatally shot 49-year-old Trena Monique Jordan around 5:18 p.m. Thursday in the 800 block of S. Holly Ave. in Cleveland.

According to Cleveland Police Capt. Scott Felts, Jordan suffered numerous gunshot wounds and was found lying on the back porch of her residence. Witnesses at the scene identified Simmons as the shooter and helped police by providing a description of his vehicle.

Around 6:03 p.m., a tip from a citizen led police to Simmons’ location. The citizen advised police that they were following a black pickup truck matching the description of the suspect’s vehicle.

Police and fire blocked the scene of a murder on Thursday in Cleveland.

A few minutes later, Felts and Sgt. David Edwards caught up to the suspect’s vehicle on US 59 southbound near the San Jacinto River Bridge.

“The suspect vehicle was slowed by congested traffic due to ongoing construction, but failed to stop. The vehicle was blocked in by officers and a felony take-down was initiated. Phillip Simmons was removed from the vehicle and was taken into custody without incident,” Felts said.

Police allege that Simmons was in possession of a 9 mm handgun that is believed to have been used in the commission of the murder. He and his vehicle were transported to Cleveland Police Department.

Police Chief Darrel Broussard called Jordan’s murder “senseless” and has left her teenage daughter and son without their mother.

“Our hearts go out to the victim’s [children], family and friends. We will be praying for loved ones affected by this brutal murder. We will work non-stop to ensure justice is served in this senseless killing,” Broussard said.

The case is being investigated by Capt. James Primeaux, Detective Kevin Cook and Detective John Shaver. A search warrant was obtained for the victim’s residence with the assistance of Liberty County Assistant District Attorney Kevin Barnes.

Pct. 6 Justice of the Peace Ralph Fuller was called to the scene to pronounce the victim deceased. Fuller ordered an autopsy.

Frieda White, the founder of Operation Refuge Food Pantry, said that Jordan will be remembered for her generous heart for the community and its residents. She was a frequent volunteer at the food bank and also helped in food distributions at Liberty Church.

“She was a wonderful person. She was one of the most caring individuals you could meet. It really hurts my heart,” White said.

Police have not identified a motive for the shooting.

Simmons’ former stepson, Gerard Dante Simmons, also is being held at the Liberty County Jail on a capital murder charge. Gerard is accused of the August 2016 murder of Latasha Green and is expected to stand trial in the coming months.

Green, a mother of five, had been the focus of a missing persons report. Her body was found in a wooded area off Wells Cemetery Road off of Plum Grove Road, just south of the SH 105 bypass in Cleveland. She was 36 at the time of her death.

The murder suspect’s vehicle was towed from US 59 to Cleveland Police Department by Smith Towing.
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Before creating Bluebonnet News in 2018, Vanesa Brashier was a community editor for the Houston Chronicle/Houston Community Newspapers. During part of her 12 years at the newspapers, she was assigned as the digital editor and managing editor for the Humble Observer, Kingwood Observer, East Montgomery County Observer and the Lake Houston Observer, and the editor of the Dayton News, Cleveland Advocate and Eastex Advocate. Over the years, she has earned more than two dozen writing awards, including Journalist of the Year.


  1. What a tremendous loss to her family and our community! Praying for all her loved ones!!!

  2. Trena worked with my Mom when I was a kid. She was so sweet and funny. I remember she’d call Momma and could hear Mom laugh so much. Time and life can seperate people but everytime they ran into each other it was hugs and laughs all over. She always had sweet words to say to me. My Mom is heartbroken over this like so many others. My heart breaks for her children the most. So senseless. Prayer’s to her family and friends.

  3. Trena, was a wonderful mother ,She loved her family A very hard work my prayers go out to her family

  4. Prayers for this lady and her family. Liberty County is becoming more dangerous each day.. I’m from Ames and it’s seems like laws don’t exist here. People shoot guns in the air at Wickliff Store.and sell drugs right in front of The Liberty County Sheriff department faces at that store. You can drink beer at the store And expose yourself there without anything happening

  5. My husband used to work with Trena & I met her a few times. She always seemed to me to be a very sweet & funny lady. My heart breaks for her kids & her family. They will be in my prayers. God Bless.

  6. I’m sorry for the Jordan’s families loses May God be with you all Nikki was one ☝️ of my mother Shirleys Best friend. They worked together in the nursing field together a long time. You will truly be missed especially your beautiful laughter and smile 🙏 Rest peacefully in Heaven 😢😡

  7. This breaks my heart. She was such a caring woman who gave her time willingly with the rest of us at the food pantry. She will be dearly missed.

  8. Phillip Simmons is from Roughlock St. in Houston Texas. He was a member of our M.B.Smiley High c/o 84. He had a violent pass there as well! Sorry for everyone’s needless loss!

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