Local News

Officials at Dorothea Dix Looking at Security

Posted November 4, 1996 12:00 a.m. EST

— In the wake of an inmate's successful escape, officials at Dorothea Dix Hospital are taking a close look at security there.

Convicted child molester Rex Haislip, 32, was found and returned to the hospital Sunday after having escaped from a hospital recreation room 48 hours before. That has residents in the hospital's Boylan Heights neighborhood feeling a little nervous.

Debbie Bond has a 2-year-old son and lives across the street from the hospital. She says her family goes on full-alert whenever they hear of an escape.

Haislip is now being held in a maximum-security, pre-trial detention center. The Dorothea Dix police force is the first group to search for an escapee. They were notified within 19 minutes of Haislip's escape. Dix Police Chief William Gilsdorf says it doesn't usually take so long to find an escapee.

Dix Director Walter Stelle blames human error for the escape, but says as the number of criminals in the hospital increases, so do the needs of the hospital.

Hospital officials will be looking into the possibility of special secure facilities for prisoners who become patients.