As federal, state and local authorities continue to investigate the disappearance of Alabama prison officer Vicki White and murder suspect Casey Cole White, Lauderdale County Sheriff says evidence suggests she helped the inmate escape.
“The question is: Did she do it willingly or was she forced to do so by inmate White by threatening her and/or her family or any other means,” the Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement to the media on Saturday afternoon.
Vicki White, the assistant director of corrections at the Lauderdale County Jail, and Casey Cole White, the man who was imprisoned on charges of premeditated murder, Missing since leaving prison Friday morning 9:41 a.m. There is no connection between the two.
Sheriff Rick Singleton said the primary focus now is finding both. Before they left prison Friday, Vicki White asked prison staff to prepare Casey White for transfer to Lauderdale County Courthouse for a mental health assessment, the Sheriff said, although no court date was set.
Vicki White also told her colleagues that she would seek medical attention after Casey White was dropped in court because she was not feeling well, but Singleton said there was no such medical appointment.
“Our secondary focus is to investigate the escape itself,” Singleton said in a statement Saturday afternoon. “Evidence is that because no court date was set, she helped A.D. (Assistant Director) White escape.”
The sheriff released a timeline Saturday detailing the chain of events and what has happened in the investigation since the disappearance of Vicki White and Casey White.
The two never made it to the courthouse, which is in downtown Florence, about half a mile from the county jail.
At 11:34 a.m., about two hours after the two men left prison, a Florence police officer saw White’s patrol car. They are parked among the cars for sale. The officer, like others in law enforcement, was unaware at the time that Officer White and Casey White were missing.
At 3:30 p.m., a prison employee informed the department that she was trying to contact Representative White but was unable to reach her. The employee also reported that Casey White has not returned to prison.
After law enforcement declared the two missing, according to the sheriff’s office, a member of the public reported seeing the patrol car in a shopping center parking lot. The deputies searched the car, but they did not find any evidence.
By 5:30 p.m., about 20 local investigators were working on the case, reviewing surveillance video from the courtroom, prison, shopping center and other locations.
As of Saturday morning, deputies were still searching for any leads about a vehicle that might have been used after White’s patrol car was abandoned.
The FBI, the US Marshals and the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency are assisting with the research. The state has issued a blue alert.
“Casey White is believed to be a serious threat to the corrections officer and the public,” the warning reads.
Speaking to reporters at a news conference Friday night, Sheriff Singleton said he believed Representative White to be in danger, citing Casey White’s history of violence. “He was in prison for premeditated murder…” said Sharif.
He said Vicki White was a “perfect employee” before she violated the mayor’s office policy by traveling alone with an inmate. Two deputies are supposed to accompany the detainees.
In 2020, Casey White was I am accused of premeditated murder On October 23, 2015 Murder for Pay was murdered by Connie Jane Ridgway. Rogersville police found Ridgway’s body in the living room of her apartment after a neighbor requested a welfare check. The 59-year-old lived in the Meadowland apartments on Prince Drive in Rogersville, across the street from the football field at Lauderdale County High School.
White in December of 2015 was charged in Two-state crime spree Which left a dead dog and injured a woman. Police said he carried out multiple shootings, home break-ins and two vehicle thefts in North Alabama and southern Tennessee. In 2019, he was convicted on a total of nine counts, including the attempted murder of his ex-girlfriend and the kidnapping of her two roommates.
Anyone who sees Casey White is advised to call 911 immediately. Authorities say it is not safe to approach the 38-year-old. Authorities described him as 6 feet 6 inches tall and 252 pounds. State police said he had salt and pepper hair, hazel eyes and tattoos on his arms.
Authorities described Vicki White, who worked for the Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Office for more than 16 years, as 5 feet 5 inches and 160 pounds. The state police said she had brown eyes and blonde or strawberry hair. She is 56 years old.