2nd New York prison worker charged in connection with killers’ escape – CNN

Plattsburgh, New York (CNN)Gene Palmer, the second prison employee charged in connection with the escape of two convicted murderers in upstate New York, admitted he provided the fugitives with tools and other items that unintentionally “made their escape easier,” according to a statement he gave the state police.

Palmer, a prison guard for more than 27 years, told investigators that within the last eight months he provided inmate David Sweat with a pair of needle-nose pliers and a flat-head screwdriver, according to the court document. Late last month, he said in the statement, he delivered a package said to contain a pound of frozen ground beef and two tubes of paint to the other inmate, Richard Matt.

Palmer’s court appearance Thursday was adjourned because he is changing lawyers. Attorney Andrew Brockway said he “simply doesn’t have the resources” to defend Palmer, who will appear in court on Monday.

Joyce Mitchell, another prison employee charged in connection with the escape, admitted to putting hacksaw blades and drill bits into the hunk of hamburger meat, according to Clinton County District Attorney Andrew Wylie. She has pleaded not guilty to charges of aiding the escapees.

Asked whether he assisted in the escape, Palmer told investigators: “No. Not intentionally.”

He continued, “Matt provided me with elaborate paintings and information on the illegal acts that inmates were committing within the facility. In turn, I provided him with benefits such as paint, paintbrushes, movement of inmates, hamburger meat, altering of electrical boxes in the catwalk areas.


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