Psychiatric patient who escapes to California, will be extradited back to Hawaii, officials say

Randall Saito, to see in the above file photo, will be extradited back to Hawaii from California after his escape from the Hawaii State Hospital.

(AP Photo/Terry Ha, File)

The Hawaii psychiatric patient who was captured on Nov. 15, three days after he managed to sneak out of his hospital and eventually on a plane to California, will be extradited back to the Aloha state, the attorney general’s office said.

A warrant is permission for the extradition of Randall Saito, 59, back to Hawaii, which was issued by California officials, the Hawaiian office announced Friday. They added that an arrangement was made with the U.S. Marshal’s Service for Saito to return to the islands on a non-commercial flight.

Saito, who told The Associated Press in a prison interview that he was surprised his plan “actually worked,” previously said in court, “I really don’t want to go back to Hawaii.”

A hearing is scheduled for Jan. 5, 2018, to discuss pending his extradition.


Saito escapes Hawaii State Hospital, which is outside of Honolulu, on the morning of Nov. 12. He took a taxi three feet away from him a charter plane to Maui. He was later able to use an alias to get past the security and on to another flight, on the way to San Jose, California. Another taxi took him to Stockton, where he was eventually held.

Sources told Hawaii News Now that Saito bought the airline ticket to California online and paid for his taxi and charter flight in cash.

It is unclear why the staff in the hospital not to alert authorities of his disappearance until that evening, long after he had managed to cross state lines.

After three days on the flight, Saito was arrested in Stockton, California, after Honolulu authorities received a tip that he was on his way to his brother’s home.

Saito was arrested in Stockton, California, on Nov. 15.

(San Joaquin County Sheriff’s Office via AP, File)

Previously called a “violent psychopath,” Saito was acquitted of murder on grounds of insanity following the 1979 death of Sandra Yamashiro. He shot Yamashiro, and repeatedly stabbed her before dumping her body in a parked car at a shopping center. Vice city prosecutor Jeff Albert said: Saito had “all the criteria of a classic serial killer.”


Saito has lived on the psychiatric ward since 1981. In the hospital, Saito had sexual relations with at least three hospital staff, who he allegedly manipulated to contraband, according to the 1993 documents obtained by Hawaii News Now. A court also denied his request for a conditional release in the same year that he still suffers from sexual sadism and necrophilia.

But when planning his escape, Saito told The Associated Press that he never planned to settle, but was rather trying to prove a point about its stability.

“I was just trying to take as much time as possible under my belt to prove my point that I could be in the community without supervision and not truculent or violent or stupid,” Saito said. “I just wanted to have a track record to throw back in the hospital and say: ‘Look, nobody was there to supervise me. I was out. I would not drink. I had no drug. I had no evil.”

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