SAN FRANCISCO -- A paroled sex offender who escaped Friday morning from a locked mental health facility in Redwood City was apprehended while panhandling Saturday in the Fisherman's Wharf area of San Francisco, police said.

Derrick Sanders, 34, escaped from the Cordilleras Mental Health Rehabilitation Center, 200 Edmonds Road, possibly through an elevator shaft, said San Mateo County sheriff's Lt. Larry Schumaker.

The floor where Sanders was housed is a locked unit and it is not yet known how he was able to leave the facility, according to the Sheriff's Office.

Sanders, a transient who has been known to move around in San Mateo and Alameda counties, was found at 9 a.m. after a passerby spotted him in Fisherman's Wharf, according to the Sheriff's Office.

The passerby told authorities he noticed a man panhandling near Beach and Powell streets and that he recognized the man because of media coverage. Authorities said the passerby then alerted the San Francisco Police Department who sent officers to the area.

Sanders was located, taken into custody then booked into the San Francisco County Jail. As of Saturday afternoon, he was awaiting transportation to the San Mateo County Jail, according to the Sheriff's Office.

Sanders has a history of violence and is considered a high-risk offender with mental health problems, according to the Sheriff's Office. He currently faces misdemeanor charges in San Mateo County for a sexual offense involving a minor.

Contact Natalie Neysa Alund at 510-293-2469. Follow her at Twitter.com/nataliealund.