Police: Former insider helped sex offender escape State Hospital

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Arizona State Hospital patient Randy Layton escaped off-site treatment but was later recaptured. Source: Arizona Department of Health Services) Arizona State Hospital patient Randy Layton escaped off-site treatment but was later recaptured. Source: Arizona Department of Health Services)
Randy Layton, 37 (Source: Arizona Department of Health Services) Randy Layton, 37 (Source: Arizona Department of Health Services)
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

Police say a sex offender who escaped treatment at the Arizona State Hospital last weekend had help from a former hospital worker.

Randy Layton, 38, escaped custody Saturday, while on a supervised outing at a restaurant near 34th Street and Thomas Road.  

[READ MORE: Arizona State Hospital patient escapes off-site treatment]

According to investigators, it was not long after that they learned Layton had an ongoing relationship Amber Rose Wilson, 38, a former residential program specialist at the State Hospital.

Wilson worked there from July 2012 to November 2014. There are indications that her relationship with Layton was the reason she left her job.

The couple was reportedly seen in the area of Central and Dunlap avenues shortly after Layton walked way from the restaurant. That is also the area where investigators found Wilson's GPS tracking ankle monitor.

On Thursday, the Dickinson Police Department in North Dakota was alerted that Layton and Wilson may be in their area. Officers there located the couple in a home, the SWAT team was mobilized, and the pair was taken into custody without any problems. 

[READ MORE: CAUGHT: AZ State Hospital escapee has been captured in North Dakota]

Wilson was taken into custody for hindering their investigation and a warrant for her arrest was issued on Friday, authorities said. She will likely be extradited back to Arizona. 

Earlier this week, police also issued a felony warrant for Layton for tampering with a monitoring device and escaping. He is being extradited back to Arizona.

Holly Ward, a spokeswoman for the Arizona Department of Health Services, which runs the State Hospital, said they are currently reviewing and updating policies and procedures as a result of Layton's escape.

Ward said some changes have already gone into effect, including the implementation of a new phone logging system to document calls by residents; expanded background checks to include people on residents' phones lists; 1:1 ratio staff-to-resident for off-site activity; and the hiring of additional residential program specialists to meet the increased supervision requirements.

With the escape of Layton, the State Hospital has temporarily suspended off-site outings. Residents who work off-site are allowed to continue to work during this time. And residents who have off-site medical appointments are allowed to continue medical visits.

Copyright 2017 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.


Donna RossiEmmy Award-winning reporter Donna Rossi joined CBS 5 News in September 1994.

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Donna Rossi

In that time, Donna has covered some of the most high-profile stories in the Valley and across the state. Donna's experience as a four-year veteran of the Phoenix Police Department gives her a keen sense of crime and court stories. She offered gavel to gavel coverage of the 1999 sleepwalking murder trial of Scott Falater, and the trial and conviction of retired Catholic Bishop Thomas O'Brien for a fatal hit and run accident. She also spent 2 straight weeks in northeastern Arizona in the summer of 2011 covering the Wallow Fire, the largest wildfire in Arizona history.

Donna's reputation as a fair and accurate journalist has earned her the respect of her colleagues and community. Her talent as a reporter has earned her more than a dozen Arizona Associated Press Awards and five Emmy statue.

Donna previously worked as an anchor and reporter in Tucson and got her start in broadcast journalism in Flagstaff. Donna is a past president of the Rocky Mountain Southwest Chapter of the National Academy of Arts and Sciences and currently serves on the NATAS board. She is a member of IFP/Phoenix, a non-profit organization of local film and documentary makers.

Donna was born in New York and moved to the Valley with her family when she was 9 years old. She is a graduate of Maryvale High School and attended Arizona State University. She graduated cum laude from Northern Arizona University.

In her free time, Donna enjoys boating on Bartlett Lake, all forms of music and theatre. Donna frequently donates her time to speak to community organizations and emcee their events. She is a past board member of DUET, a non-profit which helps promote health and well-being for older adults. Donna also loves donating her time to youth organizations and groups who work to secure and safeguard human rights.

On Oct. 17, 2015, Donna was honored for her amazing work over the years. The Rocky Mountain Chapter of the National Academy of Televisions Arts and Sciences inducted her into its Silver Circle. It's one of the organization's most prestigious honors for which only a few candidates are selected each year.

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