NY woman who helped convicted killers escape from prison denied parole

Joyce Mitchell
FILE - In this July 28, 2015 file photo, Joyce Mitchell raises her hand during a court appearance in Plattsburgh, N.Y. Mitchell, the former New York prison employee who helped two killers escape from a maximum-security prison in June, said in an interview that aired Monday, Sept. 14, on NBC's "Today" show that she was depressed at the time and the inmates took advantage of what she called her "weakness." (Rob Fountain/The Press-Republican via AP, Pool, File)

PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. (WFFF) –  Joyce Mitchell, the former prison worker who helped two convicted murderers escape from a prison in upstate New York in 2015, has been denied parole by the New York State Parole Board in a unanimous decision.

The decision, released Monday by the New York Department of Corrections and Community Supervision, said that Mitchell’s parole would not be granted “merely as a reward for good conduct or efficient performance of duties while confined.”

“You present yourself more as a victim than a responsible participant and appear to be emotionally unstable and easily manipulated. In spite of your cooperation after the escape, your presentence investigation report reflects that your statements included lies and half-truths given in a piecemeal fashion,” the decision stated.

The board went on to say that Mitchell’s release would beincompatible with the welfare of society and that there is a reasonable probability that [she] would not live and remain at liberty without again violating the law.”

On June 6. 2015, other prison workers discovered that inmates Richard Matt and David Sweat had broken out of Clinton Correctional Facility in Dannemora. Their escape spurred a massive, three-week long manhunt that culminated when police shot and killed Matt, then recaptured Sweat two days later.

Mitchell agreed to a plea bargain in July 2015 and then was sentenced to up to seven years behind bars for first-degree promotion of prison contraband, a felony, and a concurrent year for fourth-degree criminal facilitation, a misdemeanor.

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