Confessed child killer Levi Aron has been moved to Rikers Island, where he's on round-the-clock suicide watch with a correction officer watching his every move, jail sources said.
Aron, who was moved out of Bellevue Hospital this weekend, is housed apart from the other inmates in the North Infirmary Command. A specially designated correction officer is parked outside his cell 24 hours a day.
"He's in an area all by himself," a jail supervisor said. "They opened it up just for him."
Aron, 35, was arraigned last week in the murder and dismemberment of helpless 8-year-old Leiby Kletzky.
After he was arrested July 13, Aron told detectives he heard voices urging him to commit suicide over his crime.
He was initially sent to Bellevue, where he underwent a mental health evaluation. Aron was declared fit to stand trial, but his lawyer has insisted he struggles with mental health problems.
"We believe him to have some psychiatric disorders, and I believe the evaluators concurred with that," lawyer Pierre Bazile said.
The Correction Department carefully watches every inmate in custody, using well-behaved prisoners to periodically check on other residents throughout the night.
Aron is getting special treatment.
He is under the constant watch of a correction officer assigned by the department's Enhanced Suicide Observation program, a jail source said. Only inmates considered serious risks to themselves are placed in the program.
"I can confirm that he is on Rikers Island under close supervision," department spokeswoman Sharman Stein said.
It costs the city more than $70,000 to house an inmate on Rikers for a year. That cost skyrockets with the added expense of a personal monitor.
Leiby's slaying shocked and enraged the city - even his fellow inmates heckled him before his first court appearance.
In a statement to police, the Brooklyn hardware store employee matter-of-factly detailed his decision to smother the unsuspecting boy after feeding him a drug-laced tuna fish sandwich.
Aron's bizarre conversations with police were made public as he pleaded not guilty in the July 12 abduction and slaying. He even explained why he was sweating when police arrived at his Brooklyn apartment: "I can't have the AC on when the fridge is on 'cause it will blow the circuit."
Police discovered the boy's feet stored in Aron's freezer.
Aron said he showered twice after dismembering the child, then loaded the body parts into a suitcase before tossing them in a Dumpster. "Then went home - to clean and organize," he said to end the chilling confession. "I understand this may be wrong and I'm sorry for hurt that I've caused."
His defense team plans to explore the possibility of an insanity defense, which comes with a different legal standard.