New York woman who helped inmates escape to be sentenced

28 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Joyce Mitchell faces up to 7 years for helping N.Y. prisoners escape.

Plattsburgh, N.Y. — A former New York prison worker who claims she was in “way over my head” when she helped two murderers escape faces a sentence of up to seven years for her role in the audacious breakout. She pleaded guilty to charges related to providing hacksaw blades and other tools to Richard Matt and David Sweat, who broke out of the maximum-security Clinton Correctional Facility on June 6.

Mitchell said the inmates’ escape plan included going to the couple’s home and killing her husband, Lyle, who also worked at the prison. “I would take it all back if I could, but I can’t,” she told NBC. “But I’m not the monster everybody thinks I am. I’m just somebody that got caught up in something she couldn’t get out of.” Officials said the convicts used tools to cut their way out of their adjacent cells and get into the catwalk between the cell block walls. A prison guard, Gene Palmer, who authorities have said unwittingly abetted the escape plot, has pleaded not guilty to a charge of promoting prison contraband.

The plea deal means Mitchell will avoid more serious potential charges of murder conspiracy for the plan to kill her husband, and rape, for any sexual relationship she may have had with Matt and Sweat. In exchange, she will waive her right to appeal and will cooperate with the continued investigation into the prison break. “Because the evidence was so overwhelming … she wanted to expedite her case proceedings and move on with the matter,” Clinton County District Attorney Andrew Wylie told reporters outside the court

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