Prisoners escape from hospital

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Two violent mental health prisoners – one a killer – are on the run after they escaped from a secure hospital unit.

William Scott, 44, and Jackie Kerr, 27, who both have a history of violence, are thought to have climbed through a window at the Luton and Dunstable Hospital, Bedfordshire, on Saturday night. Police described them as "dangerous" and warned the public not to approach them.

Scott, from the Bedford area, was jailed for 10 years in 1997 after being convicted of manslaughter with diminished responsibility for killing Denise Palmacci. She died of multiple stab wounds in Shortstown, near Bedford, and Scott was later detained under the Mental Health Act.

Kerr, also from the Bedford area, was jailed for five years this year for robbery after he sprayed CS into the face of a shop assistant during a raid on an off-licence in Bedford last year. Kerr was also detained under the Mental Health Act.

Hospital staff found them missing at about 8pm during routine rounds.

Detective Superintendent Debbie Simpson, of Bedfordshire police, said: "Both these men have a history of extreme violence and are a danger to the public. If you see or recognise these men, please call 999."

The police can also be contacted on 01582 401212 or anonymously through Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

Scott is white, stocky, around 5ft 5in tall, with green eyes and a shaved head. Kerr is white, about 6ft, of medium build, with light brown hair and blue eyes.