Port Authority police search for man who escaped from hospital

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Port Authority police are searching tonight for a man who was arrested and escaped from UPMC Mercy, after complaining of an injury, a spokesman said.

When police stopped a car near Smithfield and Seventh streets, a passenger, Roger Cunningham, 52, ran, Port Authority spokesman Jim Ritchie wrote in an email.

An officer chased and caught him between Sixth and Seventh streets, where they wrestled over scissors in Mr. Cunningham's possession, he said.

Mr. Cunningham was arrested on charges related to assaulting an officer and drug charges, stemming from heroin he had on him, and was taken to Port Authority's police station Downtown, Mr. Ritchie said.

While in custody, he said he had a back injury and was transported to UPMC Mercy, where he threatened suicide, so the hospital indicated it might keep him overnight, the spokesman said.

Though an officer had accompanied him to the hospital, Mercy indicated he would be monitored by hospital security, Mr. Ritchie said. During testing, Mr. Cunningham ran from the hospital, he said.

Port Authority police said Mr. Cunningham is a white male, about 5 feet 11 inches, with a stocky build.

Lexi Belculfine: lbelculfine@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1878. Twitter: @LexiBelc.

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