A prison worker was arrested Friday for helping two convicted murderers break out of an upstate New York prison, police stated.
Joyce Mitchell, 51, of Dickson Center, provided “material support” to the prisoners, Richard Matt and David Sweat, police stated at a news conference these days.
Mitchell was charged with promoting prison contraband in the 1st degree — a felony — and criminal facilitation in the 4th degree — a misdemeanor — according to police.
Police would not comment on the information of Mitchell’s arrest, but stated other charges may well be filed.
“Our interviews with Joyce Mitchell have been fruitful and productive,” stated Main Charles Guess of the New York State Police. “We’re happy and we would not have charged her now if we had been not happy with the productivity of these interviews.”
Mitchell was picked up sometime soon after five p.m. by state troopers. She is set to be arraigned at Plattsburgh City Court and then will eventually be taken to the Clinton County jail. Clinton County Sheriff David Favro told ABC News he has been preparing all week for her arrival.
Mitchell could face a maximum of eight years in prison. On Friday, she was also suspended with out pay from her job at Clinton Correctional Facility, the state department of correction mentioned.
“This is 1 significant piece of the puzzle in our quest to come across these two escaped murderers,” Guess stated. Authorities are nonetheless interviewing civilian personnel and certified employees members at Clinton Correctional Facility.
Police also said Friday evening there have been no confirmed sightings of the escaped inmates and no conclusive evidence that either of the convicted killers left the region.
“It’s day six,” Guess stated. “If they have not escaped the location or they have not availed themselves of shelter, got to assume they’re cold, wet, tired, and hungry. I would advise and remind the community and the residents that that makes these men and women even a lot more dangerous and desperate.”
“We have a message for David Sweat and Richard Matt,” Guess stated. “We’re coming for you and we will not quit until you are caught.”
Investigators determined that Mitchell did not give the convicted murderers the power tools that they are believed to have employed to break out of the maximum security prison, according to Clinton County District Attorney Andrew Wylie.
“She brought contraband into the facility but I am not going to get into what it was,” Wylie mentioned through a press briefing this morning.
Mitchell worked in the tailor shop of Clinton Correctional Facility and has spoken with investigators repeatedly since David Sweat and Richard Matt escaped early Saturday June six.
Her level of cooperation with the authorities has grown over time, Wylie stated.
Two sources confirmed to ABC News on Thursday that corrections officials had previously investigated irrespective of whether Mitchell had a relationship with Sweat in the year just before his escape, but ultimately there was not sufficient evidence to take any action against Mitchell.