Absconder Arrested

This case is from 2001. 

Police arrested psychiatric hospital absconder Neville Garden in Gippsland this morning.

Garden absconded Thomas Embling Hospital on day release in Southbank on Monday.

Mallacoota residents reported a sighting of Garden in town to police today.

A local police officer located Garden at 9.15am.

An officer kept surveillance of Garden for about two hours until nearby police arrived at the scene.

Medical staff at the hospital said 45-year-old Garden was in a stable condition but on medication for psychiatric illness and diabetes.

They said Garden was not a danger to the public while he was on medication which was expected to last a week.

But staff said they were concerned for Garden’s health without access to medication.

Garden had been escorted into the community about 40 times since October, Professor Paul Mullen, staff member at Thomas Embling Hospital said.

Garden murdered 50 year old milk bar owner John George Vallotis in 1994.

He was sentenced to 18 years and nine months confinement in a mental hospital in 1995.

The Armed Offenders Squad will interview Garden on arrival in Melbourne.

The Victorian Government cancelled all day leave for patients at Fairfield Hospital on Wednesday.

Contact Lifeline 131114 or Beyond Blue 9810 6100 if in need of assistance.

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