(Reuters) - A man arrested for armed robbery escaped from a Fayetteville, North Carolina, hospital on Wednesday by assaulting a sheriff's deputy and fleeing in a stolen van, authorities said.


Edward Moore Jr, 39, was believed to be armed and dangerous after his escape from Cape Fear Valley Medical Center, where he was taken for treatment, the Cumberland County Sheriff's Office said in a statement.


The van Moore used to escape the hospital while wearing an orange jumpsuit and shackles was discovered on Wednesday night about 7 miles (11 km) from the hospital, local television station WNCN reported.


The Cumberland County Sheriff's Office statement confirmed the van, a green Buick, had been found. WNCN, citing police, reported a stun gun which Moore took from a sheriff's deputy was discovered in the van.


Law enforcement officers were conducting a manhunt in the neighborhood early on Thursday, the station reported.


Police said Moore is from Fayetteville, a city of 200,000 residents that is less than 60 miles (97 km) south of Raleigh in central North Carolina.

(Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis; Editing by Angus MacSwan)