Search Continues for Prisoner Who Ran From Maryland Hospital; Reward Increased to $10K

David M. Watson was convicted of shooting at a police officer's home

The search for an attempted murderer who escaped from a psychiatric hospital in Maryland entered its third day Monday, with the U.S. Marshals Service leading the search. 

Police are now offering a $10,000 reward for information that leads to the arrest of 28-year-old David M. Watson.

Howard County Police are assisting the U.S. Marshals Service and Delaware State Police. Police went door to door at businesses in Jessup on Monday, asking business owners to check their properties, vehicles and surveillance video for any sign of a break-in or suspicious activity.

Watson was being transported to Clifton Perkins Hospital Center on Friday for a psychiatric evaluation related to an attempted murder case in Maryland. When a guard opened the van in the hospital parking lot, Watson pushed the guard down and ran into nearby woods, police said.

Authorities searched for Watson in the area surrounding the hospital from Friday through Saturday morning using bloodhounds, K-9 units and helicopters with heat-seeking technology, police said.

"There are no indications that Watson remains in the area, and there have been no sightings," the police department said on Facebook.

Police believe Watson managed to get out of his handcuffs and waist chain inside the van, Howard County Police spokeswoman Sherry Llewellyn said Friday. Both were found outside the van, according to police.


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His leg shackles were not found, but his sweatpants were found in tact, Llewellyn said. He would have had to free at least one of his legs from the shackles to remove the sweatpants without ripping them.

Police do not know whether Watson had planned the escape or had any help.

He was last seen in the area of Dorsey Run Road and Patuxent Range Road in Jessup. Some of his clothing was found in the woods, and a K-9 was able to pick up the direction in which he fled.

Police say Watson has ties to the Eastern Shore of Maryland and to Delaware. 

He was serving a sentence in Delaware for attempted murder for shooting a police officer's Laurel-area home. He is also charged with attempted murder on the Eastern Shore, where authorities say he shot at two officers' homes.

Watson is white, 5 feet 8 inches and weighs 140 pounds. He has tattoos between his eyes and under his right eye, as well as several on his body.  

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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