Police find, arrest wanted man who escaped from hospital

11:21 PM, Feb 20, 2012   |    comments
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Investigators told 9NEWS Crime and Justice Reporter Anastasiya Bolton they tracked down Samuel Lee Govea after getting a tip through Crime Stoppers at 4:30 p.m.

Edgewater Police, Denver Police and the Denver Sheriff's Department then found Govea at 5:30 p.m. and he surrendered without incident. He was taken back to the emergency room at Denver Health Medical Center.

To keep him from escaping again, two officers will stand watch over him.

Govea escaped just about an hour after being taken into custody, according to Cpt. Frank Gale, a spokesperson for the Denver Sheriff's Department.

Gale said the 22-year-old was admitted to Denver Health several days ago to be treated for a gunshot wound to his left leg. The details of Govea's gunshot wound haven't been released.

"Law enforcement received some information that he was a wanted person," Gale said.

Denver Police responded and determined Govea had warrants from Jefferson and Adams counties, as well as Lakewood Police. Govea doesn't have any warrants from Denver.

Police say he was wanted on suspicion of escape, burglary, assault, menacing, criminal mischief, violating a protection order and failing to register as a sex offender.

According to Gale, Denver Police notified the sheriff's office because deputies are responsible for securing prisoners at the hospitals.

Govea was arrested on the fourth floor about 7 p.m. Sunday.

Gale says sheriff's deputies secured Govea in his bed by using a leg iron specifically made for this kind of a situation. Govea was secured, and the deputies were trying to figure out whether it was medically safe to move him to the jail ward.

During that time, he escaped.

According to Gale, Govea dismantled the bed, took out his tubes and left the hospital with the leg iron restraint still attached to his leg.

Gale says depending on the schedule, two to three deputies are assigned to work the emergency room to handle the inmates or arrestees coming into the hospital.

On the weekends, Gale says, there could be a dozen or more prisoners or arrestees secured in the emergency room. When so many people are there, the deputies on duty have to do rounds, checking on everyone. It was during that rotation when Govea escaped.

(KUSA-TV © 2012 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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