Guard who fled with inmate murder cashed in and eyeing Florida, family say

Lauderdale County Sheriff's Office

Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Office

A Alabama corrections official who disappeared with inmate facing capital murder charges “may have been brainwashed” to help him escape, his stepmother said on Tuesday.

The pair could be anywhere now, Frances White told The Daily Beast, explaining that Lauderdale County Deputy Director of Corrections Vicky Sue White, 56, was frugal and had amassed enough money to keep her going afloat for some time.

“She had said she would like to live in Florida, that’s the only thing I can think of,” Frances White, 88, said in a phone interview Tuesday morning.

As the search for Vicky White and 38-year-old Casey Cole White (no relation) stretches into her fifth day, her late husband’s family aren’t sure what to think. Frances White said her son, Thomas White, died in January of complications from Parkinson’s disease.

“I’m just proud that he’s not alive yet, because he still thought she was a good person,” she said. “I can’t imagine him running off with that guy, but you never know. He entered a woman’s house and stabbed her.

Inmate charged with capital murder goes missing with 25-year-old prison officer

Casey White was awaiting trial at Lauderdale County Jail after confessing to stabbing Connie Ridgeway, 58, to death in 2015. The six-foot-nine white, who pleaded not guilty to Ridgeway’s murder, was previously sentenced in 2019 to 75 years for a series of crimes in County Limestone the same year for trying to shoot his ex-baby. friend, stole an SUV, shot and killed a dog and took three hostages.

“He said he wanted to kill her and the police kill him,” says a police report of the case. “His only regret was that neither of them succeeded. He said if released he would kill the victim.

Vicky White, who had a “clean record”, according to Lauderdale County Sheriff Rick Singleton, was last seen on April 29 leaving the county jail with Casey White to arraign him for an evaluation of his mental health. Casey White was handcuffed and shackled in the back of her patrol car, Singleton said. But Vicky White had committed a serious breach of protocol by carrying Casey White solo, contravening an established policy to have two sworn deputies with him on any trip following the discovery in 2020 of an escape plan that he would have concocted.

Vicky White said she was heading for a doctor’s appointment after dropping Casey White off. However, Singleton said Casey White did not have an evaluation scheduled that day and Vicky White never showed up at the medical facility. His patrol car was later found abandoned in the parking lot of a nearby shopping center. After first saying investigators were looking into whether Vicky White voluntarily helped Casey White escape, or whether she was threatened or coerced into doing so, Singleton said Monday that “there are indications” that she was in on it.

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Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Office

A news release issued Tuesday by the Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Department said there had been a “special relationship between Warden White and inmate Casey White. This relationship has now been confirmed by our investigation by independent sources and means.

On Tuesday, Frances White was still racking her brains trying to make sense of what had happened.

“Everyone is trying to figure out what made her do this,” she told The Daily Beast. “Someone said, ‘Maybe she was just having a bad day.’ I said, “Well, that’s no excuse.”

The two had six hours to get away, White continued, “So they’re not here.”

“I have no idea where she is,” she said, noting that her former daughter-in-law had spoken of her eventual retirement in Florida.

Vicky White had just submitted her retirement papers the day before she disappeared, and his mother told local media WAAY that nothing seemed out of the ordinary on their last morning together. About five weeks ago, she sold the house she shared with her late husband and moved in with her mother. News reports described Vicky as flush with the money from the sale, but Frances White said she had spent years hoarding the money and would have plenty on hand.

“She had money before she sold her house,” Frances White told The Daily Beast. “She saved her money. I guess if she still has her money, she still has enough to live on for a while.

Casey White faces the death penalty if convicted of Ridgeway’s murder. He “has nothing to lose, she has everything to lose,” said Frances White, who added, “I don’t think that man has feelings for anyone.”

In the aftermath of Friday’s escape, Ridgeway’s son, Austin Williams, called Casey White a “freak.” Vicky White was armed at the time and Singleton said Casey White should now be considered armed and dangerous. A warrant for Vicky White’s arrest, a copy of which was obtained by The Daily Beast, was pronounced for allowing or facilitating a first-degree escape. Casey White is wanted for a second degree escape. A A $10,000 reward was offered for information leading to their capture.

The case recalls another infamous escape carried out with the help of a prison employee. Joyce Mitchell, a prison seamstress, spent more than four years behind bars for helping two inmates escape from the maximum-security Clinton Correctional Facility in Dannemora, New York, in 2015. Mitchell, who had a affair with one of the men, was released in 2020.

Frances White’s two surviving sons are just as shocked as she is, she said: “They can’t believe it either. My eldest son, he couldn’t imagine her going with him… Looks like she helped him escape.

Everyone in the family is hoping someone will come up with a lead, she said.

“You know, there’s a $10,000 reward, and someone will tell them something,” she said. “I thought if she spoke to someone, maybe they would come forward to get that money… Maybe he brainwashed her. But I don’t know how he would have had a chance to brainwash her, because he was in prison.

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