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One of the convicted killers that escaped from Clinton Prison in Dannamora has been shot and killed by Customs Border Enforcement, police sources in New York are reporting.
49-year-old Richard Matt was killed in Franklin County. He was shot by enforcement agents not far from the cabins that he and his fellow escapee, David Sweat, had hid out in earlier after their escape. The location is approximately 40 miles west of the prison where they burrowed their way out earlier this month.
The net closed in around Matt after a driver reported that someone had shot at his camper. The driver of the camper called 911 and reported the incident to authorities, spurring them to closely investigate the incident. Authorities had been combing the area for the escapees after it was determined that the two convicts were making their way to the Canadian border.
Matt was located in a heavily wooded area in Malone, and Matt died in a burst of gunfire just south of the Canadian border. A second volley minutes later may signal that authorities are close on the trail of David Sweat, the second of the two escapees.
Richard Matt was serving a 25-year prison sentence for killing and cutting up his boss.
Authorities for a time thought that Matt may have been making his way back to Mexico, where he had spent many years, nine of them in Mexican prisons. Matt had fled to Mexico after killing and dimembering his boss, 76-year-old William Rickerson in Tonawanda, New York.
The two men made good their escape by cutting their way out of the prison facility utilizing hacksaws, chisels and other tools supplied to them by the prison’s seamstress Joyce Mitchell as well as other tools stored at the facility by contractors. In their original getaway plan, Mitchell was to be the convicts’ driver, but Mitchell got cold feet and later changed her mind. Mitchell pled guilty to promoting contraband as well as other charges on June 15th.
This escape is the very first escape from the high-security area of the 120-year-old prison built in 1845.
1,100 members of law enforcement have been searching for the two men. Prison officials are continuing their investigation into the details of the escape.