Missing prison chief had a two-year relationship with the inmate she helped escape: police officers

The Alabama deputy director of corrections, who disappeared with a capital murder suspect, had called the inmate multiple times in prison and had a “special relationship” with him for nearly two years before the pair went missing, the New York Times reported. York Post.

Vicky White and inmate Casey Cole White, who apparently fled together on Friday, have been linked since late 2020 when he was brought into the jail guard’s jurisdiction on charges of murder, Lauderdale County Sheriff Rick Singleton told the newspaper in an interview.

At that moment, Casey had been serving a 75-year sentence at the William E. Donaldson Correctional Center in Jefferson County for a 2015 crime spree, but on Aug. 3, 2020, he was taken to Lauderdale County for questioning after he wrote a letter confessing to her murder, according to Singleton and District Attorney Chris Connolly.

It was at this time that Singleton believed that Casey and Vicky met and started a cozy relationship.

For the next three months, Casey was held in the Lauderdale County jail where Vicky worked while investigators questioned him about the death of 58-year-old Connie Ridgeway.

He was finally indicted on murder charges on October 2, 2020.

By that November, Casey was ordered back to Donaldson Prison after staff realized he was planning to escape, Connolly said.

After his return to the prison, which is about two hours south of Lauderdale County, Vicky called him into Bessemer Penitentiary numerous times, Singleton said.

It’s not immediately clear how they met when Casey was in Lauderdale County, but as deputy director of corrections, Vicky’s main job was transporting inmates.

“What we find out now is that they were in communication from 2020 to the present day,” the sheriff explained.

Casey’s mother, Connie White, claimed that she had never heard of Vicky. But she did mention that her son had a “pen pal” with whom she had maintained contact.

He also alleged that Casey confessed to lying about breaking into Ridgeway’s house and stabbing her to death, because he didn’t like the Donaldson prison he was assigned to and wanted a change of location.

“He wrote a letter to say that he murdered that woman. But he didn’t actually kill her, he just did it to get back here,” Connie said.

“I just wanted to get out of that prison because it was so bad and there was no food.”

In March 2021, Casey returned to the Vicky Jail in Lauderdale County and spent more than four months there while undergoing a mental evaluation and quarantine for COVID-19, Connolly said.

In August, Casey was transported back to Donaldson Prison, where Vicky continued to stay in contact with him by phone, but on February 25, he returned to Lauderdale County to prepare for his murder trial, which was scheduled for April.

However, before the case could begin, he escaped on Friday morning.

Singleton revealed new details about the escape plan, saying that prior to the disappearance, Vicky had purchased an orange 2007 Ford Edge, which she hid in a mall parking lot in Florence Square.

Vicky allegedly hid the vehicle in plain sight by parking it inside a row of cars that were for sale, Singleton said.

On the day of the escape, Vicky abandoned her squad car in the same shopping center and is believed to have absconded in the Ford Edge.

Cops learned of the apparent getaway car after a concerned citizen called to report seeing it at the mall Thursday night, just hours before the breakout.

“(He) was looking at those cars and said there was an orange SUV that he was looking at,” Singleton said.

“He went looking for the number because he was interested in it and there was no For Sale sign or number and he thought it was a little weird.”

Investigators ultimately traced the car to a dealership in Florence, which has been assisting police in their investigation.

Once images of the car were published in an accidental social media post, the sheriff’s office was inundated with tips of sightings from Kentucky, Tennessee and as far as Florida, Singleton said.

“And of course we’ve gone through all of them and none of them worked,” Singleton said.

“But you know, one of these days we’re going to get that call and it’s going to be them.

“The search we do is based on the clues we get or the tips. We are not focused on just one area.”

Now that the public has learned about the car, Singleton said, he’s worried the couple will get rid of the vehicle and find a new car.

“We’re guessing that probably, if they haven’t already, they’ll get rid of that car and then we’ll be back to square one as far as what they’re up to,” the sheriff explained. “That’s a big hurdle for this investigation.”