David Sweat and Richard Matt (left to right).

DANNEMORA, N.Y. – Police have shut down a road near the village of Dannemora as their manhunt for two murderers who broke out of prison over the weekend continues Thursday.

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New York State Police shut down Route 374, east of the village of Dannemora, between General Leroy Manor and Rand Hill roads in West Plattsburgh. Officials said in a news release that the road closure is part of their investigation.

The road was closed Wednesday and is expected to be closed throughout Thursday morning.

Richard Matt, 48, and David Sweat, 34, broke out of their separate cells at the Clinton Correction Facility using power tools and shimmying through a pipe that led them out of the prison to a manhole.

David Sweat and Richard Matt (left to right).

The men were discovered missing by a guard during bed checks around 5:30 a.m. Saturday. They left behind evidence of a movie-like escape from the prison and a taunting note.

The men have been allegedly sighted throughout New York and surrounding states.

A Philadelphia cab driver is being questioned Thursday after he says he drove two men matching the description of the murderers to a train station, NJ.com reports.


On Wednesday, the search for the escapees extended into Vermont where Vermont State Troopers began searching for the men near Lake Champlain campsites and trails. The search began after officials received a tip that the men might have planned to leave New York through the state, CNN reports.

Tuesday, a person reported seeing two suspicious men walking in the rain on a rural road in the town of Willsboro, causing police to converge on the area to look for the men.

Matt is 6-feet tall, 210 pounds, with black hair and hazel eyes. He has tattoos on his back that say “Mexico Forever,” a heart on his chest and left shoulder and a Marine Corps insignia on his right shoulder.

Sweat, 34, is 5 feet 11 inches tall, 165 pounds, and has brown hair and green eyes. He has tattoos on his left bicep and right fingers.

Sweat is serving a sentence of life without parole after he caused the death of the death of a Broome County Sheriff’s Deputy on July 4, 2002. He was convicted of first-degree murder in Broome County and taken to the Clinton prison Oct. 30, 2003.

Matt is serving a sentence of 25 years to life after he kidnapped a male and and beat him to death Dec. 3, 1997. He was convicted of three counts of murder, three counts of kidnapping, and two counts of robbery in Niagara County. He was transferred to Clinton jail on July 10, 2008.

The state is offering a $100,000 reward for information leading to the capture of both men. A $50,000 reward is offered for information that leads to the capture of one of the escapees. People with information can call 1-800-GIVE-TIP. Both men are considered a danger to the public. Officials are warning people to not approach the men. Instead, call 911 or the New York State Police at 518-563-3761.

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Jolene Almendarez

Jolene Almendarez is Managing Editor at The Ithaca Voice. She can be reached at jalmendarez@ithacavoice.com; you can learn more about her at the links in the top right of this box.