Escaped prisoner on the loose, used bed sheets to rappel from NYC hospital 5th floor

The inmate was taken to the hospital for a medical issue on Friday and had been receiving care before he fled out of a fifth-floor window

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Police were on the hunt for an inmate who fled from custody at a Manhattan hospital during a bold escape.

The prisoner, identified as Yenchun Chen, was in Department of Corrections custody at Mount Sinai Beth Israel Hospital in Gramercy around 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, according to the NYPD. He was taken there for a medical issue on Friday and had been receiving care before he fled.

The 6'3, 250-pound inmate asked to use the bathroom to take a shower. Police said that Chen then tied sheets together and used them as a rope to rappel down from a fifth-floor window, escaping to the street.

The 44-year-old then hailed a yellow cab heading south on Second Avenue just minutes later, police said.

Surveillance photos of the suspect were released later Wednesday as the search for Chen continued.

Chen was initially arrested for criminal possession of a controlled substance in Flushing, Queens, in early August. He was awaiting his court date that was set for later in the month.

Anyone with information in regard to the whereabouts of this individual is asked to call the NYPD's Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477), or by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website.

Editor's Note: Police sources previously told NBC New York that Chen had been caught in New Jersey. That information was not accurate, and a DOC official said the inmate had not been apprehended.

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