Police and sheriff's deputies are searching for an inmate who ran from Berkshire Medical Center on Monday afternoon.
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Law enforcement authorities are on the lookout for a House of Corrections inmate who overpowered a sheriff's deputy and fled while being treated at Berkshire Medical Center.
The man, who was being held by the Berkshire County Sheriff's Department for pretrial, took off wearing only a pair of orange inmate pants — no shirt, no shoes.
The suspect, 33-year-old Harry Chandler, was arrested on several outstanding warrants on July 3, including failure to register as a sex offender. He escaped custody at about 2:07 p.m. Monday.
"He is a fugitive and he is at large so he is a concern," Sheriff Thomas Bowler said.
Chandler has several violent offenses on his record and although not considered an immediate threat to the public, Bowler said he is "obviously a concern" because he is "unpredictable at this time with his emotions and his addiction."
"He's more of an immediate danger to himself than I think to the public," Bowler said. "He's in a bad way, he has a severe addiction. ...
"But obviously, we're concerned because he's at bay, he overpowered one of our officers at the hospital and was able to get free."
Anyone seeing Chandler should contact authorities immediately at 413-442-0512. .
Chandler was suffering from infections in his hands at the time of his arrest and was taken to BMC.
"He needed medical treatment for infections to his hands down to at Berkshire Medical Center since the 3rd and he was getting released today to come back into our custody," the sheriff said. He did not know the immediate condition of the deputy, who was being treated at BMC.
Chandler was being held on charges including breaking and entering, assaulting a police officer, drug possession, trespass, shoplifting, assault and batter with a dangerous weapon and failing to register as a sex offender.
Pittsfield Police and sheriff's deputies were scouring the immediate area of the hospital and the Lanesborough Police Department was assisting. Bowler said other resources would be called upon as needed. He said Chandler's family has been cooperating with law enforcement.
Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Harry Chandler should call the sheriff's department at 413-442-0512.
Complete write-thru with updated information and quotes at 4:21 p.m.; more information added at 4:35 p.m. regarding threat to public and added photo.
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