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story.lead_photo.caption From left, Michelle Messer and Cory Kristopher Chapin

A State Hospital staff member was questioned about how an involuntarily committed patient got contraband items before leaving with him Tuesday, court documents show.

Michelle Marie Messer, 41, a psychological examiner at the institution, denied knowledge of a cellphone and vaping machine that were found in 46-year-old Cory Chapin's possession, according to an affidavit.

Hospital officials told Messer to have no contact with Chapin and to wait in an office for further investigation. Instead, court records show, Messer left the office, went to a unit in the hospital and waited for Chapin to walk by. The two then left together, the affidavit states.

The Arkansas State Hospital Police Department has a warrant out for Messer's arrest on a misdemeanor charge of aiding an unauthorized departure.

The relationship between Messer and Chapin, who has been the responsibility of the Human Services Department since 2015 and has been previously acquitted of theft and kidnapping charges, is still not known.

Check back with Arkansas Online for updates on this developing story and read Friday's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette for full details.

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  • OldGuard
    March 22, 2018 at 4:45 p.m.

    Young love, always touching to see.

  • ZeebronZ
    March 22, 2018 at 10:47 p.m.

    Having lived with people like him, when on meds, they can be very convincing even to a seasoned therapist. She obviously got emotionally involved and was about to get busted anyway. Too bad.

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