Police officers are still on the hunt for 49-year-old Richard Matt and 35-year-old David Sweat, who escaped from a maximum security prison in upstate New York. The pair was last seen on Friday, June 5th at 10:30 p.m.
At 5:30 a.m. the next morning during inmate count, prison officials noticed they were not in their cells after realizing that their bunks were altered to look as though someone was sleeping in it.
The pair peered through a series of pipes, tunnels and walls containing steel before escaping through a manhole, after leaving a note that read “have a nice day.”
They used tools that were allegedly given to them by Joyce Mitchell, a Clinton Correctional Facility worker who was later suspended without pay, according to the Associated Press.
Major Robert Barkley, chief of Gadsden County Police Department, has worked in law enforcement for 30 years and stated that partnership is highly important when it comes to individuals who escape facilities.
In May, 24-year-old Gregory Sapp Jr. escaped from Gadsden County Jail in Qunicy, Florida after being charged with murdering Keyonda Collier, his former girlfriend.
Although Barkley could not comment on the specifics of this case, he mentioned that similar to the New York search for Richard Matt and David Sweat, dogs assisted with the three and a half hour investigation.
“Any time a person is planning an escape someone knows about it. The quicker you can develop that information the more likely you can apprehend that suspect,” Barkley said. “The key thing is to develop intelligent information about what that person might do. The longer you wait, the further that person can get.”
According to the Associated Press, Mitchell, a prison tailor who continues to cooperate with police, appeared in court Monday wearing a striped jumpsuit. She has been charged with providing tools to aid the escape.
Florida A&M University Police Chief, Terence Calloway believes that the prisoners may possibly still be receiving outside help.
“They got out of prison with the help of an inside worker, who is to say that she [Mitchell] doesn’t have people on the outside helping them,” Calloway said.
Dogs picked up on the scent of the two and officials saw a shoe print and food wrappers in the area. As the perimeter continues to be closed in, authorities believe they are still in the area and hope to find the escapees within the next 24 hours.
After receiving more than 800 leads, the two are still on the run.
Terrence Tyson, a third-year psychology student, believes that they were probably planning this for years.
“I don’t think they will catch them. It’s over now! They probably changed their identity. It’s a lot that you can do in seven days,” Tyson said.
According to Andrew Cuomo, the New York Governor, there is a $100,000 reward for information leading to their capture.