NEWBURYPORT (CBS) — A patient escaped Anna Jaques Hospital and allegedly attacked a man in the house across the street.
The victim, Patrick Chamberlain, said the attacker said, “I don’t want to do this” and then charged at him with a hammer.
Chamberlain said early in the morning his girlfriend noticed the hall light go on, heard the stairs creak and then a stranger appeared with a hammer.
Their neighbors are still recovering from the news. “I am shocked,” said Bob Toye.
Police said a patient from the hospital ripped out his IV and cut off his GPS monitoring bracelet and then ran naked out of the emergency room.
“I am a little disturbed by that,” said Toye.
About three hours later, Chamberlain said the patient entered his home through an unlocked door. The house is under construction and that patient grabbed a hammer before making his way upstairs. Chamberlain says they fought for ten minutes before the other man gave up and ran.
“I walked up the street and they were loading Mr. Chamberlain into the ambulance,” said Toye.
Chamberlain received seven staples in his head and stitches.
Police caught the patient, 26-year old Robert Girard of Amesbury, nearby.
“Maybe we need to think of how to keep those patients contained better,” said neighbor Jodi Paciulan.
The hospital said it followed procedure and immediately notified police when Girard left. Court records show Girard is schizophrenic.
In the police report officers wrote “he asked if we were there to cut his head off.”
“For somebody to do that, they are not in their right mind you just don’t know what’s going to happen,” said Paciulan.
Girard is charged with several crimes including attempted murder. He is held without bail pending a dangerousness hearing on Monday.