Home / National News / Escaped Inmate Richard Matt Appeared to be Intoxicated When Killed, Official Says


(MALONE, N.Y.) — Escaped prisoner Richard Matt appeared to be acting intoxicated at the time he was shot and killed, an official briefed on the matter told ABC News.

Matt’s colleague, fellow convict David Sweat, remains missing, with 1,200 law enforcement officers involved in the search for Sweat.

Those search crews are progressively tightening what was a 3-mile perimeter in the hope of “squeezing” Sweat, the official said.

The men escaped June 6 from the Clinton Correctional Facility in Dannemora, 50 miles away from Saturday’s search area.

Matt was shot and killed by a Customs and Border Protection SWAT team in the town of Elephant’s Head. The shooting brought mixed emotions for Matt’s half-brother, Wayne Schimpf.

“I was in a way hoping this was the outcome,” he told ABC News affiliate WKBW-TV in Buffalo. “Thank God this can finally end for me and my family. The next thought was, ‘That’s my brother.'”

The search for the men intensified in the area after Bob Willett, a cabin owner, called authorities after noticing items missing and out of place.

A bottle of rum, two pairs of boots and binoculars were among the missing items, and Willett also noticed a bottle of gin had been spilled, he told ABC News.

“All we knew is that somebody was in the camp and we didn’t know who it was, so we decided we better call [police] and they came right up,” Willett said.

Franklin County Sheriff Kevin Mulverhill said late Saturday that he expects a break in the manhunt for Sweat to come within the next 48 hours.

Sweat is prone to making a mistake, Mulverhill said.

Search crews expect to face troublesome weather conditions, including heavy rain, in the next day or so.

Matt’s body has been transported to Albany Medical Center for an autopsy, state police said.

Residents who see anything out of the ordinary – such as trespassing or burglary – are asked to call 911.

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