Authorities in North Carolina are looking for a suspect who walked out of a hospital on Friday night after a 11-year-old struck him in the head with a machete in a foiled home invasion.
The Orange County Sheriff's Office said on Facebook that 19-year-old Jataveon Dashawn Hall walked out of UNC-Chapel Hill Hospital "against medical advice" shortly before 8pm. Hall had been hospitalized for treatment of a head wound since about 1 pm, initially at UNC-Hillsborough Hospital before being transferred to Chapel Hill facility due to the severity of his injury
"Our agency is very concerned about the events in this case, "Chief Deputy Sykes said in a statement Sunday." Effective immediately, we will institute policy changes necessary to protect the public in situations like this. "
Hall, who is 6 feet tall and weighs 135 pounds, had his
The sheriff's office said they were notified when the 19-year-old was originally arrived at the hospital but had no legal authority to hold him in custody at the time as he was only suspect. By that afternoon, police said enough information was established to seek warrants for breaking and entering and assault.
The deputies were then planning to be at the hospital at the time of discharge and take Hall into custody but were told early Saturday morning that the 19-year-old had actually left the night before
The sheriff's office said that Hall had told a nurse he needed to leave because "the police were going to be looking for him."
"When Hall left the hospital Friday night against medical advice, we should surely have been notified. that hospital police did not even know Hall had left the premises almost 10 hours before, "Sykes said. "Indeed, Hall's absence was only discovered when we made a phone call to them."
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UNC Health Care said in a "The patient was admitted to the ED, but was in the legal custody of the Orange County Sheriff's Department, which did not place an officer with him," organization told The News & Observer. "In similar situations, hospital staff will often alert law enforcement personnel when a suspect patient is discharged, but they remain the legal responsibility of law enforcement."
The sheriff's office said that hospital police were notified warrants were issued and were asked to call the department prior to Hall's discharge.
"The arrangement of all our law enforcement agencies has with the hospital police to ensure the eventual arrest of a suspicious after the suspect receives medical care, has been in place for decades, "Sykes said. "
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Authorities said that Hall was among intruders who broke into home Friday but was chased off when the
The boy's aunt, Ashley Matthews, told WTVD on Saturday she was outraged by the news that Hall had gone out
"Who is responsible? Who should have been there watching him? Who should have been there sitting outside the emergency department? Who is responsible for allowing this criminal to go out of UNC Hospital? "She told the television station," We want to know who it is, and we want someone to take responsibility. "
UNC Healthcare said that staff are working with the sheriff's office to "offer them help in this matter." Anyone with information about Hall's whereabouts is asked to contact the sheriff's office at 919-245-2900.
Vandana Rambaran and The Associated Press contributed to this report.