A 34-year-old Mountain View man arrested after a fatal stabbing Tuesday in Eden Roc subdivision escaped from the Hawaii State Hospital on Oahu in late 2009 and had been on the lam since, the state’s adult mental health chief confirmed Wednesday afternoon.
Psychologist Mark Fridovich, who was the hospital’s administrator at the time of the escape, said that Mark True Seal escaped the Kaneohe facility Dec. 3, 2009, by scaling a fence.
Seal is in custody in the Hilo police cellblock on suspicion of second-degree murder. Charges had not been filed as of late Wednesday afternoon. He is suspected of fatally stabbing Rory Thompson Wick of Mountain View, a 32-year-old father of three.
Wick was an artist, winning awards for his work while a student at the University of Hawaii at Hilo several years ago.
Seal was committed to the mental hospital after being acquitted by reason of insanity in April 2002 for the kidnapping and attempted first-degree sexual assault of an 8-year-old girl on Maui.
The last hearing on Seal’s case, according to court records, was on Dec. 10, 2009 — a week after his escape. On that date, Maui Circuit Judge Joseph Cardoza denied a request by the state Department of Health to authorize the involuntary administration of medication, ruling that an emergency hearing would be set when Seal was back in the custody of the health department.
Fridovich cited patient confidentiality laws when asked about Seal’s mental state, his medications and how long he had allegedly refused to take them.
Lt. Gregory Esteban said police “have recovered an instrument at the scene” they believe may be the weapon used.
Police said Wick, who had suffered multiple stab wounds, was unresponsive when officers and Fire Department medics arrived on-scene. He was pronounced dead at 11:11 p.m. at Hilo Medical Center. An autopsy is scheduled Friday to determine the exact cause of death.
Email John Burnett at email@example.com.