Kidnapping Suspect Escapes From New Jersey Psychiatric Hospital

A landscaper charged with kidnapping the wife of his former boss escaped from a state psychiatric hospital early Monday by breaking through a window, officials said.

Edgar Rene del Cid-Perez, 34, was discovered missing from the intensive treatment unit of Trenton Psychiatric Hospital where he was undergoing evaluation, spokeswoman Ellen Lovejoy said. His two roommates stayed behind despite the chance to escape.

Police dogs tracked the Cid-Perez's scent four miles from the hospital to a busy intersection in the city, where the scent was lost, possibly because del Cid-Perez got into a car or bus. He remained at large Monday evening.

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Cid-Perez was charged in December with kidnapping Karen Maffucci, of Bernardsville, weeks after her husband had fired him from his landscaping business.

Authorities said he abducted her at gunpoint from her home, bound her with duct tape and tried to stuff her in a wooden box in a remote barn while demanding $1 million ransom from her husband.

Maffucci was able to free herself and police arrested Cid-Perez by tracking cell phones that he used to demand the ransom.