Joyce Mitchell’s infamous case and trial will be reexamined in the new six-episode Lifetime series Cellmate Secrets, leading many to wonder where exactly the prison worker is today. Get an update on what has happened since she helped two convicted murderers escape from a maximum-security facility in June 2015. 

Where Is Joyce Mitchell Now?

Mitchell has completed her time behind bars nearly six years after assisting prisoners Richard Matt and David Sweat in an elaborate scheme so they could escape Clinton Correctional Facility. On February 6, 2020, she was released from the Bedford Hills Correctional Facility in Westchester County, New York, to community supervision, according to the Department of Corrections. 

She will be supervised in Franklin County until June 2022.

Joyce Mitchell

What Did Joyce Mitchell Do? 

The prison seamstress, (a.k.a. “Tillie”) was arrested in June 2015. At the time, she was accused of helping convicted killers Matt and Sweat, who previously worked in her tailor shop, to escape from the facility based in Dannemora, New York. She smuggled breakout tools in frozen meat, providing the inmates with chisels, hacksaw blades, a punch and screwdriver bits to aid in their getaway.

With the items, Matt and Sweat were able to cut through their cell walls and hack into pipes to get into an underground tunnel system and make their exit in June 2015. They spent nearly a month on the run in the woods near the Canadian border before they were located by officials. Over a thousand law enforcement officers aided in the $20 million manhunt. Matt was shot and killed in Malone on June 26. On June 28, Sweat was captured and shot in Constable. Sweat survived and was later moved to a new prison: the Attica Correctional Facility in Attica.

What Happened in Court?

Mitchell pleaded guilty to bringing contraband into the Clinton Correctional Facility and to criminal facilitation in July 2015. She was later sentenced in September 2015, getting two to seven years in prison. Mitchell ended up serving more than four years behind bars until she was released. 

Joyce Mitchell Today
Mike Groll/AP/Shutterstock

Is Joyce Mitchell Married?

Mitchell, who was married at the time of the Shawshank Redemption-style escape, denied she ever had sex with the convicted killers while reacting to Showtime’s portrayal of her in Escape at Dannemora. 

Mitchell’s husband, Lyle, previously told Today that after she was arrested, his wife admitted she gave the prisoners tools but denied ever getting physical. Lyle claimed the prisoners asked his wife to come with them after their breakout, but she refused in the end. “She said: ‘I love my husband, I am not hurtin’ him,'” he told the outlet in an interview at the time. “She said, “Then I knew I was over my head.” 

They were last spotted together in February 2020 and appear to be together now.

Cellmate Secrets premieres Friday, June 4, at 10 p.m. on Lifetime.

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