Overnight manhunt in Upper Hutt fails to locate escaped prisoner Ricky Wilson

Ricky Wilson.
Ricky Wilson. Photo credit: NZ Police / Supplied

A prisoner who escaped Corrections custody while being transported to Rimutaka Prison from hospital on Sunday night is still on the loose. 

There was an extensive search for Ricky Wilson, 29, overnight around the immediate vicinity of the prison and in close proximity, but was stood down when it failed to locate him - despite help from the Westpac Rescue Helicopter.

Police told Newshub the search would resume on Monday around first light.

Wellington police on Sunday asked the public to "stay inside".

A post on the Wellington District Police's Facebook page said the search was focusing on the suburbs of Silverstream and Heretaunga. 

"Can people please stay inside to enable the helicopter's technology to better identify heat signatures of interest in this area," the post read.

Wilson is described as Caucasian, 183cm tall and of thin to medium build. Both his lower legs are heavily tattooed.

"He should not be approached and police ask that anyone with information on Wilson's whereabouts call police on 111," police warn.

The post has sparked speculation and warnings among local residents.

"Keep your doors locked," one wrote.