Sexual predator escapes at court
George Dudley, 60, fled while a state health worker guarding him was using a restroom.
While confined in state mental care, sexually violent predators are called patients and not prisoners.
Police say that partly explains how a predator who was left unguarded easily escaped from Wyandotte County court Monday morning while his guard, a state health worker, used the restroom.
George Dudley, 60, was in state mental care at Larned State Hospital. He appeared Monday in court, where he successfully argued for the judge to appoint a new attorney for him.
“He got what he wanted,” said Robbin Wesson, an assistant county prosecutor. “I think he just saw his opportunity and he took it.”
Police throughout the area were looking for Dudley, convicted in 1997 of molesting three 14-year-old boys in Edwardsville.
About noon Monday, Dudley used a credit card at an ATM at 39th and Main streets in Kansas City, said Jeff Fewell, a spokesman for the Wyandotte County sheriff.
Patients are allowed to have credit and debit cards, a state spokesman said.
Dudley and three other unrestrained prisoners from Larned were escorted to the court by four health-care workers, all of them in civilian clothes.
At the time of the escape, one worker was alone with Dudley and another offender and that worker left them unsupervised, Fewell said. “The inmate escaped because a hospital employee slipped in to go to the bathroom.”
Steve Mock, a spokesman for Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services, said the department was reviewing how the escape happened.
“Mr. Dudley had reached the point in his development where staff felt he didn’t need to be restrained,” Mock said.
Dudley was convicted of three counts of indecent solicitation of children and sentenced to five years in prison.
After that, he was designated a sexual predator and confined to indefinite mental care.