Prisoner captured after escaping Oregon mental hospital while fully shackled

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Oregon police captured a prisoner who escaped from a psychiatric hospital while fully shackled and then needed to be rescued after getting stuck in deep mud, authorities said Friday.

Christopher Lee Pray had been called a “dangerous escapee” when he got away Wednesday night from the Oregon State Hospital, taking off in a Dodge Caravan, officials said.

Then Friday at 8:17 a.m. PDT, emergency dispatchers received a call about a “potentially deceased person” in a pond near Portland, Oregon State Police (OSP) said in a statement.

A fire and rescue crew responded and told police they weren’t needed at the scene.

Pray was “stuck in the mud, approximately 75 feet from firm ground, and was buried up to their armpits,” officials said. It took rescuers about an hour to pull him out, state authorities said.

Pray gave a fake name at Legacy Emanuel Medical Center before “an observant hospital employee noticed he resembled” the escaped prisoner, prompting a call to police and leading to his arrest, officials said.

The pond where Pray was found is about 55 miles north of the Oregon State Hospital in Salem.

“We want to thank the vigilant medical personnel who recognized Pray and alerted authorities,” state police said.

Authorities vowed to get to the bottom of how Pray got away despite being “fully restrained with leg shackles, a belly chain, handcuffs and a restraint connecting all three together,” state police said.

He is in custody, facing several charges including attempted murder, robbery, assault and felon in possession of a firearm in Multnomah County Circuit Court.

He was taken Oregon State Hospital in Salem after he was found unfit to proceed with trial, court records showed.

The prisoner was somehow “able to gain control of” an unmarked Oregon State Hospital vehicle and drove away, Oregon State Hospital spokesperson Amber Shoebridge said in a statement.

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