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Two convicted killers still on the loose after staging a dramatic prison escape in upstate New York almost two weeks ago on Thursday were added to the U.S. Marshals’ “15 Most Wanted” list of fugitives.
David Sweat, 35, and Richard Matt, 48, used power tools to saw through their cells and escape Clinton Correctional Facility in Dannemora, N.Y., on June 6, officials say.
Hundreds of police have searched wooded areas near the maximum-security facility, and the manhunt continued for its 13th day Thursday. There have been no confirmed sightings of either convict, police have said.
"The agency's 15 Most Wanted fugitive list is reserved for the worst of the worst," U.S. Marshals Service Director Stacia Hylton said in a statement. "There is no question David Sweat and Richard Matt fall into this category."
It is hoped that placing the men on the wanted list will generate new leads after the trail has apparently gone cold. The Marshals service is offering a reward of up to $25,000 each for information that leads to the capture of one or both of the killers.
On Sunday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo noted the two could be "in Mexico by now."
Prison worker Joyce Mitchell has been charged with bringing tools into Clinton Correctional that Sweat and Matt used to escape. The prosecutor confirmed this week that Mitchell and the killers discussed a plot to murder her husband, Lyle, who also works at Clinton Correctional.
Lyle Mitchell's attorney said his client was "blown away" by the plot.
"He’s in shock, still — this is a woman who he felt was his best friend for 21 years, and now he finds out that she was possibly even part of a plot to kill him,” attorney Peter Dumas told the TODAY show Thursday.
Dumas said Joyce Mitchell admitted to her husband this week that the plot was discussed, but said she wasn't in agreement with the plan, and was being threatened by Matt and Sweat.
"Lyle still cares about his wife, but he realizes that he can't stand by her, that she’s kind of made her own bed in this situation," Dumas said. "And he’s got to distance himself from that.”