Search for man who es­caped from state hospi­tal shifts to Cal­i­for­nia

Hawaii Tribune Herald - - NEWS - By AU­DREY McAVOY and JEN­NIFER SINCO KELLE­HER

HONOLULU — The search for a dan­ger­ous man who es­caped from a Hawaii psy­chi­atric hospi­tal moved to Cal­i­for­nia af­ter au­thor­i­ties said Tues­day he boarded a flight to the state from Maui two days ear­lier.

Ran­dall Saito, who was ac­quit­ted of a 1979 mur­der by rea­son of in­san­ity, left the state hospi­tal out­side Honolulu at 10 a.m. Sun­day, took a taxi to a char­tered plane that took him to Maui and then boarded an­other plane to San Jose, Calif., Honolulu po­lice said.

“Saito is con­sid­ered ex­tremely dan­ger­ous and should not be ap­proached,” po­lice said in state­ment late Tues­day.

The FBI and U.S. Mar­shals Ser­vice re­viewed se­cu­rity footage from San Jose In­ter­na­tional Air­port in connection with the man­hunt, said Jon Vaden, a spokesman for the air­port.

He said po­lice have not ad­vised him of any threats at the fa­cil­ity.

Saito was com­mit­ted to the state hospi­tal in 1981, two years af­ter he was ac­quit­ted in the killing of San­dra Ya­mashiro.

The vic­tim was shot and re­peat­edly stabbed be­fore her body was found in her car at a mall.

“He is a very dan­ger­ous in­di­vid­ual,” said Wayne Tashima, a Honolulu pros­e­cu­tor who ar­gued in 2015 against Saito re­ceiv­ing passes to leave the hospi­tal grounds with­out an es­cort.

Tashima warned peo­ple not to ap­proach Saito, say­ing there’s a con­cern he could com­mit the same “very heinous and vi­o­lent of­fense” again. Au­thor­i­ties asked any­one with in­for­ma­tion to call po­lice.

Hospi­tal staff called 911 to re­port Saito’s dis­ap­pear­ance at about 7:30 p.m. Sun­day — two hours af­ter he ar­rived in San Jose, Honolulu po­lice said. An all­points bul­letin was is­sued at 8:30 p.m.

It was not im­me­di­ately clear un­der what cir­cum­stances Saito was away from the fa­cil­ity in a Honolulu sub­urb.

Hawaii State Hospi­tal Ad­min­is­tra­tor Wil­liam May said of­fi­cials are fully co­op­er­at­ing with law en­force­ment and ap­pro­pri­ate steps would be taken if Saito had help from some­one in­side the fa­cil­ity.

SAITO

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