David Sweat, one of the men who escaped from a New York prison earlier this year, appeared in court on Thursday to face charges regarding his elaborate prison break.

David Sweat Charged In Prison Break

Sweat, 35, escaped from the Clinton Correctional Facility in upstate New York in early June, along with fellow inmate Richard Matt. The two escapees, both convicted murderers serving life sentences, were eventually caught by authorities after a month-long manhunt. Matt was shot and killed by police, but Sweat was apprehended with minor gunshot wounds and taken into police custody on Sunday, June 28.

In court on Thursday, Sweat was arraigned, charged with two counts of escape in the first degree and one count of promoting prison contraband in the first degree. Sweat reportedly remained silent throughout the short hearing, only speaking to his court-appointed lawyer, Joseph Mucia. Mucia and Sweat declined to submit a plea, a decision Mucia said stemmed from their meeting for the first time earlier that day. “I don’t even know what his intentions are at this point,” Mucia told reporters.

District attorney Andrew J. Wylie explained his decision to prosecute Sweat for his recent crimes despite the fact that Sweat is already serving a life sentence without parole, following the hearing. Wylie simply stated that it was his job to enforce the law, saying, “The point is, David Sweat and Richard Matt committed a crime in Clinton County. It’s my job as a prosecutor in this country to prosecute people who commit crimes in this county. That is the bottom line.”

A conviction on escape charges could drastically affect the conditions in which Sweat is kept in prison. Sweat is currently being held in the Five Points Correctional Facility, a maximum security prison in New York.

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