Investigation Leads Mental Health Facility to Update Security

PHOENIX — An investigation from a local news station, prompted Arizona State Hospital (ASH), a mental health facility, to add and update security measures, after the report highlighted a large number of patient escapes from the medical center.

In February, ABC15 reported that in the past three years, some 18 escapes occurred on the ASH campus. Of those escapees, four — some with criminal records — have not been found. Even with the escapes, hospital officials severely cut its security force.

Since the report, ASH has held special training drills to teach staff how to prevent and respond to escapees. Additionally, the hospital has hired extra workers from a temp agency and reassigned members of the transportation department to monitor the campus.

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