Police Capture Armed Prisoner Who Escaped Va. Hospital

Authorities say Wossen Assaye escaped as he was being guarded by an armed security officer.

UPDATE: The inmate who escaped from Inova Fairfax Hospital early Tuesday morning was captured by law enforcement after a nine-hour manhunt. He was pursued by several hundred officers from state, federal and local agencies. The prisoner was recognized by a bystander who recognized him from posts on social media, reports Reuters.


Fairfax County (Va.) Police are engaged in a manhunt for Wossen Assaye, 42, an inmate from a local prison who escaped at 3 a.m. Tuesday while he was being treated at Inova Fairfax Hospital.

Authorities say Assaye escaped as he was being guarded by an armed security officer. The forensic patient overpowered the officer, took her gun and fired a shot inside the hospital. Before fleeing the facility, he used her as a human shield.

Assaye is described as a black male who is 6 feet tall, weighing 170 pounds. He is wearing a hospital gown. Police say his is driving a silver Toyota Camry with front end damage. The license plate is XZP-8513. The prisoner obtained the vehicle by carjacking the woman who was driving it in Annandale. Police say he might be accompanied by his girlfriend.

The inmate is suspected of committing an armed back robbery. Assaye was taken to the hospital because he tried to commit suicide, reports WTOP.

When Assaye first arrived at the hospital, he was guarded by Alexandria sheriff’s deputies, but then he was handed over to a private security firm.

The hospital was placed on lockdown during the incident, and an announcement was made over the PA instructing patients to stay in their rooms. The lockdown was lifted four hours later.

Photo: Fairfax County Police

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