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Prison tailor and escape accomplice Joyce Mitchell slams ‘Escape at Dannemora’ director Ben Stiller

Joyce ‘Tillie’ Mitchell, 54, has expressed her fury over the Showtime series ‘Escape at Dannemora’ – which she says unfairly depicts the events that transpired when the ex-prison tailor helped two convicted killers escape a maximum security facility in New York in 2015. Mitchell, 54, is pictured during her sentencing after being convicted for the prison break in September 2015 

The prison tailor who allegedly had sex with with two inmates at a maximum security facility in upstate New York and was convicted of helping them escape, has furiously labeled director Ben Stiller a liar for his  TV portrayal of the case in ‘Escape at Dannemora’.  

Joyce ‘Tillie’ Mitchell is the central character in the Showtime series that first aired last month, detailing how the seamstress hatched a plan for convicted killers David Sweat and Richard Matt to escape Clinton Correctional Facility in 2015.  

Mitchell spoke out for the first time in three years in a pair of interviews last week as she serves a seven-year sentence at Bedford Hills Correctional Facility in Westchester.  

‘I never had sex with them,’ the 54-year-old told the New York Post of Sweat and Matt, whose escape resulted in a $20million manhunt that went on for 23 days before the former was recaptured and latter was shot dead. 

‘Ben Stiller is a son-of-a-bitch liar just like the rest of the world. He doesn’t care about the truth. All he cares about is making millions off me. He’s an idiot,’ Mitchell said. 

Speaking out for the first time since her 2015 conviction, Mitchell slammed ‘Dannemora’ director Ben Stiller (pictured) over how she is portrayed in the series that premiered last month – though the 54-year-old has never actually seen it herself. ‘Ben Stiller is a son-of-a-bitch liar just like the rest of the world. He doesn’t care about the truth. All he cares about is making millions off me,’ Mitchell told the New York Post during an interview at Bedford Hills Correctional Facility in Westchester, where she is currently serving a seven-year sentence

Though Mitchell has never actually seen 'Dannemora' herself, she claims that the Showtime series is based on 'lies' about what occurred between her and Clinton Correctional Facility inmates David Sweat and Richard Matt. In the show, Mitchell - played by Patricia Arquette (above) - frequently has sex with  Sweat and Matt in the closet of the tailor shop where she supervised inmates. Real-life Mitchell insists she never had consensual sex with either inmate

Though Mitchell has never actually seen ‘Dannemora’ herself, she claims that the Showtime series is based on ‘lies’ about what occurred between her and Clinton Correctional Facility inmates David Sweat and Richard Matt. In the show, Mitchell – played by Patricia Arquette (above) – frequently has sex with Sweat and Matt in the closet of the tailor shop where she supervised inmates. Real-life Mitchell insists she never had consensual sex with either inmate

Mitchell – who has not actually seen ‘Dannemora’ but has heard about it from her husband and prison guards – says the show’s portrayal of her as a ‘lovesick prison seamstress’ fails to capture the reality of the situation she was in.

She admitted to providing Sweat and Matt with the hacksaw blades and drillbit they used to saw through the walls of Clinton Correctional in Dannemora, New York, but said that she did it out of fear, not love.   

‘At that point, I had to do it,’ Mitchell told the Post. ‘I was stupid. They took advantage of my kindness. 

‘I wish I could take it all back. If I had to do it over, I would have told somebody.’ 

Matt (above) and Sweat used tools that Mitchell smuggled into Clinton Correctional to cut through prison walls and make their escape

The prison break sparked a 23-day manhunt that resulted in Matt being shot dead and Sweat (above) being recaptured

Sweat and Matt used tools that Mitchell smuggled into Clinton Correctional to cut through prison walls and make their escape, sparking a 23-day manhunt that resulted in Matt (left) being shot dead and Sweat (right) being recaptured

Mitchell claims that it would not have been possible for her to have sex with anyone in the closet of the tailor shop where she supervised inmates - despite what occurs in the Showtime version. Clinton Correctional Facility in Dannemora, New York, is pictured above 

Mitchell claims that it would not have been possible for her to have sex with anyone in the closet of the tailor shop where she supervised inmates – despite what occurs in the Showtime version. Clinton Correctional Facility in Dannemora, New York, is pictured above 

Mitchell says 'Escape at Dannemora' fails to accurately tell her story because 'the truth doesn't sell. Everyone thinks I'm just a whore who wanted it'. Arquette declined to meet with the character she is playing because she felt real-life Mitchell would distort the story to make herself look more favorable. Arquette is pictured during a scene with David Sweat (Paul Dano)  

Mitchell says ‘Escape at Dannemora’ fails to accurately tell her story because ‘the truth doesn’t sell. Everyone thinks I’m just a whore who wanted it’. Arquette declined to meet with the character she is playing because she felt real-life Mitchell would distort the story to make herself look more favorable. Arquette is pictured during a scene with David Sweat (Paul Dano)  

In the TV adaptation of the prison break, Mitchell is immortalized by Patricia Arquette – who made the decision not to meet the person whom her character is based on because she thought the mother-of-one would try to spin the story.  

Mitchell said of that claim: ‘The truth doesn’t sell. Everyone thinks I’m just a whore who wanted it.’

While the show repeatedly depicts sex between Matt (Benicio Del Toro) and Sweat (Paul Dano) – mirroring claims from prison insiders – Mitchell says that’s not how things actually went down. 

She told investigators that she had provided nude photos of herself to Sweat, and that Matt forced her to perform oral sex on him.   

Mitchell claims that it would have been ‘impossible’ for her to have sex with the inmates in the real-life closet of the tailor shop where she supervised them.  

‘It has an air compressor in it,’ she said. ‘I went back there to turn it on and off, but I was always by myself.’

Mitchell said that the one thing 'Dannemora' gets right is the character of Richard Matt, played by Benicio Del Toro (above), who is seen as an untouchable figure within the prison 

Mitchell said that the one thing ‘Dannemora’ gets right is the character of Richard Matt, played by Benicio Del Toro (above), who is seen as an untouchable figure within the prison 

Though Mitchell says her own portrayal is deeply flawed, she believes Del Toro’s portrayal of Matt as a prison god is spot on. 

‘[Matt] could have anything he wanted in that prison,’ Mitchell said. 

She said the show accurately captured Matt’s relationship with Corrections Officer Gene Palmer, who was sentenced to six months in jail for delivering the hamburger meat that Mitchell used to smuggle the escape tools in.  

Mitchell was furious when Palmer was released after just four months. She said he got favorable treatment because he was an officer. 

Meanwhile, Mitchell has been denied parole twice and is eligible for early release again in June. She could be behind bars through June 2022 if she serves her maximum sentence. 

Mitchell will be up for parole for a third time in June 2019. If she serves her maximum sentence, the 54-year-old will be behind bars until June 2022. The former prison seamstress is pictured at a hearing one week after Matt and Sweat escaped with her help on June 6, 2015  

Mitchell will be up for parole for a third time in June 2019. If she serves her maximum sentence, the 54-year-old will be behind bars until June 2022. The former prison seamstress is pictured at a hearing one week after Matt and Sweat escaped with her help on June 6, 2015  

Arquette's Mitchell is pictured during a scene from 'Escape at Dannemora'

Arquette’s Mitchell is pictured during a scene from ‘Escape at Dannemora’

‘Escape at Dannemora’ has also been poorly-received in the New York village where the prison break took place, as residents say the show has reopened painful wounds inflicted by Mitchell. 

When Mitchell eventually gets released, whether it be next year or in 2022, her former neighbors in Dannemora say she better not try to come home.  

A friend longtime friend of Lyle Mitchell, the ex prison tailor’s cuckolded husband, told the Post: ‘I’d tell [Tillie]: ‘You’re no good.’ 

He added: ‘With any luck, she’ll pass away in prison and never have to come back.’ 

The friend said that the community, which sits just by the Canadian border, was disgusted by Mitchell’s decision to help her ‘secret storeroom lovers’ escape from the prison – the area’s largest employer. 

Following the prison break, all facility employees are not required to carry all of their belongings in transparent bags dubbed ‘Tillie bags’. 

Residents in Dannemora, New York, are also frustrated with the Showtime series because it has reopened painful wounds inflicted by Mitchell's actions and because many say the show portrays locals as 'hillbillies'. Clinton Correctional (above) is the largest employer in the area 

Residents in Dannemora, New York, are also frustrated with the Showtime series because it has reopened painful wounds inflicted by Mitchell’s actions and because many say the show portrays locals as ‘hillbillies’. Clinton Correctional (above) is the largest employer in the area 

Locals are also disgusted by how their town has been portrayed in the Showtime series.  

‘It’s insulting — they have everyone look like a bunch of hillbillies,’ Lyle’s friend said.  

The Post reported that another resident was recently asked by an outsider: ‘Is everybody in that town that dumb?’ 

The friend said that the most insulting portrayal has been of Mitchell’s husband. 

‘They have Lyle playing a total idiot on TV. Sh-t, they should have gotten Goofy to play his part if they’re gonna do that,’ he said. 

However, the friend said of real-life Lyle: ‘I don’t care what [Tillie] does, but she made my buddy look like a moron.

‘I told him: “You’re not the first guy to marry a whore.” He didn’t like that. People laugh at him. We’ve got a lot of town jokes and he’s one of them.’ 

Friends of Mitchell's cuckolded husband Lyle (above during his wife's 2015 trial) say that he is anxiously awaiting his wife's release - while Dannemora residents hope she doesn't come back 

Friends of Mitchell’s cuckolded husband Lyle (above during his wife’s 2015 trial) say that he is anxiously awaiting his wife’s release – while Dannemora residents hope she doesn’t come back 

Lyle's friends also said that the Showtime series has been brutal in its portrayal of Lyle as a 'total idiot'. His character, played by Eric Lange, is pictured above in a scene from the show

Lyle’s friends also said that the Showtime series has been brutal in its portrayal of Lyle as a ‘total idiot’. His character, played by Eric Lange, is pictured above in a scene from the show

Another friend agreed, saying of Lyle: ‘He’s got a lot of shame. I would sell my house and go. I would have gotten rid of her on day one.’

‘I told him to his face: “If you love her, shut up about it – don’t tell the whole world. Go see her on the quiet.”‘

Lyle is said to be anxiously awaiting his wife’s return at the couple’s home in Dickinson Center, about an hour outside of Dannemora, with his ailing 77-year-old mother-in-law. 

The former prison tailor – who is depicted in the show as an electrician – even built his wife a backyard gazebo for her to enjoy when she gets home.  

One of the neighbors, identified only as Bill, told the Post of Lyle: ‘He’s waiting for her to come home. 

‘I think he’s nuts for staying with his wife after she tried to kill him,’ he said, referring to prosecutors’ unsubstantiated claims that Mitchell and the inmates hatched a plan to off Lyle. ‘If my wife wanted me dead, I sure as hell wouldn’t take her back.’

The Post reported that when a journalist stopped by the couple’s home this week, Lyle answered the door and said he’s doing ‘good’ but: ‘I’m not saying nothing to nobody.’   

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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