An admitted killer who walked away from a psychiatric hospital over the weekend returned to the facility on Tuesday and surrendered, authorities said.
Two hospital employees spotted William Enman, 64, in camouflage clothing behind the Ancora Psychiatric Hospital after he had made his way back inside a perimeter fence, said Ellen Lovejoy, a spokeswoman for the state human services department, which runs the hospital.
Enman was unarmed, bruised, tired, wet from soaking rain showers, and was arrested without a fight on the 657-acre hospital grounds.
“He banged his head after scaling a fence the first night and remained in the area ever since,” state police spokesman Steve Jones said.
His backpack contained clothing, a toothbrush, toothpaste, soap and bandages — none of the camping or survivalist gear that some authorities believed he was carrying, officials said.
Lovejoy said Enman could have collected the items at the hospital, including the camouflage clothing, since it has no dress code.
He escaped while on a routine, unsupervised walk on Sunday that was supposed to last less than an hour. The facility is not secured like a prison; it’s perimeter is enclosed by an 8-foot-high fence, with several open, unguarded gates.
Lovejoy said he would no longer be allowed out of his room and a staff member would always watch him. He will be transferred to the more secure Anne Klein Forensic Center in Trenton, she said.
Once caught with crossbow
In the 1970s, Enman was found not guilty by reason of insanity in the deaths of his roommate and the man’s 4-year-old son in northern New Jersey. He admitted beating them with a baseball bat.
He has been involuntarily committed to state hospitals ever since, including Ancora since 1992. He has frequently asked judges to release him and was scheduled for another such hearing Thursday.
Enman has walked away from hospitals in the past, and has been caught with a crossbow smuggled back into his room.
His latest escape struck fear in nearby neighborhoods, set off a frantic 48-hour dragnet and raised questions about security at psychiatric hospitals in New Jersey.
Enman has been something of a poster child for permissive rules regarding the criminally insane in state mental institutions. State Sen. Richard J. Codey spoke about Enman and his escapes at a 1995 hearing.
A judge once reprimanded him for getting married and fathering a child when he was allowed to visit people outside the hospital, a privilege that was revoked. It was unclear why he lost the privilege however.
Enman faces charges of escape, Lovejoy said. If he’s found mentally competent and is convicted, he could end up in a state prison.