Prisoner fled in handcuffs during Leeds hospital visit

Daniel Brown.
Daniel Brown.

A PRISONER who escaped from police custody in handcuffs during a hospital visit managed to stay on the run for more than two weeks, a court heard.

Daniel Brown, 22, managed to flee as officers escorted him from St James’s Hospital in Leeds to a van parked outside.

After he was finally arrested Brown offered to sell the handcuffs back to West Yorkshire Police and told them he had decided to run away “because it was a nice day.”

Leeds Crown Court heard Brown was sentenced to 18 months in June last year for possessing an imitation firearm with intent to cause fear of violence.

He was admitted to hospital on June 13 this year after becoming unwell in prison.

He was taken to St James’s and placed on a drip but was discharged the following day after his health improved.

Philip Adams, prosecuting, said Brown was placed in two sets of handcuffs before leaving the hospital.

Two officers were escorting him from the exit when Brown he suddenly pulled his arms down, freeing himself. He ran off and managed to get away despite the officers chasing him.

Brown was arrested on June 29 at a hotel in Wakefield. He was not wearing the handcuffs, worth £100 each, and offered to sell them back to police.

Mr Adams said the handcuffs have not been recovered.

Brown, of Farrow Road, Armley, pleaded guilty to escape and two offences of theft.

Brown’s barrister said his client had been the victim of a serious assault while in custody, causing him to lose the sight in one eye.

He had also been stabbed in the chest and had boiling water thrown over him. The court heard he would be in a vulnerable position within prison.

Judge Tom Bayliss, QC, jailed Brown for six months.

He said: “When you were interviewed you said you thought it was a nice day. You made no arguments. There is precious little in terms of mitigation. In the end there has to be a prison sentence that will start today.”

Police appealed to the public for help in catching Brown after his disappearance but warned people not to approach him.