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EXCLUSIVE: Ex-State Hospital employee who helped sex offender escape was previously investigated

Posted at 5:12 PM, May 05, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-05 21:51:28-04

The woman who helped a sex offender escape from the state mental hospital is a former hospital employee who was twice investigated for having an inappropriate relationship with a patient, according to records exclusively obtained by ABC15.

According to officials, 38-year-old Amber Wilson helped Layton escape from Arizona State Hospital employees while on a supervised outing at the Red Wok Buffet near 34th Street and Thomas Road.

The two were arrested in North Dakota by U.S. Marshalls.

Layton and Wilson are dating, police confirmed. She is believed to have been making arrangements to move out of state since late last month.

ABC15 has learned that Wilson was a hospital employee from July 2012 to November 2014. She resigned from her position days after an internal investigation found she was “intentionally having inappropriate contact” with a patient, records show.

A previous investigation also probed Wilson’s relationship with a patient. Sources tell ABC15 the patient in both investigations was Randy Layton.

READ THE INTERNAL INVESTIGATIONS

Amber Wilson Internal Investigations by Dave Biscobing on Scribd

Layton ran from a "regularly scheduled off-site treatment related activity" with the Arizona Community Protection and Treatment Center on Saturday night, according to state officials.

Police were first alerted to the incident around 6:30 p.m. in the area of 34th Street and Thomas Road. Layton escaped while at the Red Wok Buffet by reportedly dodging hospital staff and removing a GPS tracker device that was later found near Central and Dunlap avenues.

Officials say he is considered a moderate risk for potential harm to others. 

Layton was convicted of multiple crimes in Mohave County that involve sexual conduct with children. In one incident, Layton pled down to an aggravated assault charge after having a sexual relationship with a minor, officials said.

In another crime, he was accused of putting his hands down the pants of a pre-teen girl and touching her.

ABC15 also found Layton was charged with kidnapping and child endangerment in Clark County, Nevada.

Officials said Layton was pulled over by police in the Las Vegas area. He had taken the 12-year-old daughter of his then-girlfriend to Las Vegas without her mother’s permission. Police found the child had marijuana, which she said Layton had given to her.

Prosecutors in Mohave County have worked to block Layton’s release into the community since his prison sentence expired by successfully petitioning the court to keep him in the Arizona Community Protection and Treatment Center.

According to the state, the ACPTC is a civil commitment program that provides supervision, care and treatment to men adjudicated as Sexually Violent Persons (SVP). All admissions and re-admissions to, and discharges from, ACPTC are court ordered.

Escapes have been a past problem at the Arizona State Hospital.

In a 2013 report, an ABC15 investigation found 16 patients went missing from the hospital in a three-year period. One of the escaped patients murdered a woman.

The last hospital escape was in December 2015. The patient was found days later by police and returned to the hospital.

The ABC15 Investigators also uncovered that there have been several other staff members caught having inappropriate relationships with patients.

Contact ABC15 Investigator Dave Biscobing at dbiscobing@abc15.com.