A female prison worker provided contraband to two escapees at an upstate New York correctional centre whom authorities are hunting for a seventh day, Clinton County District Attorney Andrew Wylie told reporters on Friday (12 June).

Joyce Mitchell, an industrial training supervisor in the tailor shop at Clinton Correctional Facility in Dannemora, New York, was being questioned about her alleged role in the prison break of convicted killers Richard Matt, 48 and David Sweat 34, authorities said.

"She brought contraband into the facility and I am not going to get into what it was," Wylie said. He did specify that Mitchell did not bring in power tools.

Mitchell was previously investigated by the Inspector General's office of the state Department of Corrections and Community Supervision after a co-worker filed a complaint about her seemingly close relationship with Matt, the Albany Times Union reported, citing two unnamed people with knowledge of the case. No disciplinary action resulted from the investigation.

Wylie said proof of a relationship was "unfounded" but added," Action, I think was taken to separate the two of them for a period of time."

Mitchell could face criminal charges in connection with the escape Wylie said but did not offer further details about the nature of the charges.