Alabama jail director Vicky White was about to honored as employee of the year for the fifth time in her career before she helped accused murderer and lover Casey Cole White escape from prison on April 29.
Vicky White was set to be honored as the Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Department Corrections Employee of the Year this week – an award voted for by her peers.
Lauderdale County Sheriff Rick Singleton told The New York Post: ‘That speaks volumes in terms of what her peers and subordinates thought of her.’
Singleton added: ‘I think it just shows the kind of person that we thought she was. No one that worked with her and knows her ever saw anything like this coming.’
The runner-up in the vote will now receive the award.
Vicky White, who said she was taking Casey White for a mental health evaluation, ran away with him on April 29. Casey White was serving a 75-year sentence for multiple crimes when he confessed to a 2015 murder
Vicky White’s awards were on display when her mother, Pat Davis, was interviewed by WAAY-TV while her daughter was still a fugitive
Vicky White was set to be honored as the Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Department Corrections Employee of the Year this week – an award voted for by her peers
On Wednesday, Vicky White’s last words to the man she sprang from prison blamed him for their capture, 911 audio shows
Amid the chaos of their forced car crash after sheriff’s officers rammed their Cadillac from the road and into the ditch, Vicky, 56, can be heard saying, ‘Stop, stop, the airbags will go off and kill us.’
A few moments later Vicky can be heard suggesting, ‘Let’s get out and run,’ before, clearly frustrated, she rounds on Casey and says, ‘You had to stay in some f***ing motel.’
White can be heard responding with a low rumble of a laugh.
The couple were captured after an Evansville police department patrol officer ran the plates on a car he saw parked up at Motel 41, on the outskirt of the Indiana town.
It showed that the vehicle was stolen. Earlier, a local man had reported a blue truck – bought in Tennessee for $6,000 by White – parked at an odd angle in his car wash and surveillance footage appeared to show White at the facility.
Law enforcement staked out the Motel 41 where it turned out White and Vicky had intended to stay for 14 nights.
Instead, after just six, officers caught up to them, giving chase when the couple emerged from their room in the brief pursuit that ended with that forced crash and Vicky’s death from a gunshot wound.
In the 911 audio an officer can be heard voicing concern as he observes that Vicky has a gun in her right hand and, ‘has her finger on the trigger.’
Casey survived the chase and surrendered to police. He is now back in custody in Alabama and on Tuesday night, was seen shuffling in shackles through the Lauderdale County Courthouse.
DailyMail.com was there to witness the 38-year-old walk into court shortly before 10pm little more than 24 hours after his the 11-day manhunt for the pair came to an end.
He spoke only to assure Judge Ben Graves that he had received proper counsel as he was charged with escape in the first degree.
The 56-year-old corrections officer was due to retire on the day she absconded with the suspected murderer
That charge is now added to his laundry list of felonies, the most pressing of which is a capital murder charge for which he is due to stand trial in June.
Dressed in Vanderburgh County Correctional Facility yellow shirt and pants, a raw wound was clearly visible in the back of White’s shorn head as he sat at the front of the small courtroom.
It was the only evidence of any injury sustained by White in the car crash that dramatically ended his 11 day stretch on the lam with co-conspirator, former assistant director of corrections Vicky White, 56.
White was walked into the back of Lauderdale County Courthouse by sheriff deputies. He refused to answer questions shouted by waiting press.
He did not react when asked if he felt any remorse for Vicky’s death. Vicky White, 56, died on Monday from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, the coroner ruled on Tuesday.
She pulled the trigger as the car she and Casey White – no relation – were traveling in crashed into a ditch in Indiana, having been run off the road by police.
In a separate interview with WVTM, Singleton said that he believe the entire plot was due to a ‘jailhouse romance.’
During that interview, Singleton said that Casey White will ‘probably’ be in prison for the rest of his life.
On May 2, WAAY-TV conducted an interview with Vicky’s mother, Pat Davis, at her home.
The pictures showed Vicky’s many awards and newspaper clippings proudly on display.
One award statue read: ‘Deputy of the Year 2015’ while another read: ‘Corrections Employee of the Year 2020.’
The pair were caught Monday afternoon after leading US Marshals on a car chase that lasted ‘less than a few minutes’. They had been in Evansville, Indiana, since May 3
Davis told the local station that she did not believe that her daughter would willingly help somebody to escape from prison.
Attorneys for Casey White informed the court that they will be filing a motion for a change of venue for Casey’s forthcoming trial for the murder of 58-year-old Connie Ridgeway – allegedly stabbed to death by Casey White.
Casey White has confessed the crime, claiming he was paid to commit the heinous act.
Casey White confessed to the murder of Connie Ridgeway while he was serving time for other crimes. He is awaiting a capital murder trial for the 2015 killing.
Ridgeway’s son, Austin Williams, told WAFF in an interview that Vicky White’s death was not what the family was not what their family was hoping for.
As regards Vicky White being in a relationship with the man who killed his father, Ridgeway said: ‘Casey’s romantic relationships haven’t lasted long in the past. Maybe she didn’t know what she was up against exactly.’
Lauderdale County lawyer Temberly Sledge told CBS42 in an interview that he worked with Vicky White in the prison system.
The two were found 219 miles away from the jail they left in Alabama on April 29. The manhunt spanned three different states
Casey White, 38, is seen in dashboard camera footage released by police in Indiana being taken into custody on Monday
These are all of the weapons the couple had in their Cadillac when they were rammed into a ditch by police on Monday
The couple had just $29,000 of the $90,000 Vicky had withdrawn when they were caught on Monday
Images obtained by DailyMail.com show the simple rooms with an open clothes rack for hanging garments, small table and wall mounted television like the one in which White and Vicky stayed
This is a general view of the Motel 41 in Evansville, Indiana, where prison guard Vicky White, 56, and her inmate lover Casey White, 38, spent six days holed up after fleeing Lauderdale County Detention Center in Florence, Alabama on April 29
Sledge said that he spoke to her less than 24 hours before she broke Casey White out of prison: ‘When I spoke with Vicky on Thursday, I thanked her for her help and one of the comments that I made was “There are a lot of people in jail that have no one to help them.” And I never could have imagined what would happen the next morning.’
Vicky’s body has been removed from Indiana to a funeral home in Florence, Alabama. Her funeral will be held on May 14 at Center Hill Church of Christ Cemetery in Lexington, Alabama.
Casey White is due to stand trial for Ridgeway’s murder in June. Casey’s attorney saying his client wanted the trial to go ahead then against his advice.
His appearance came as new dashboard and body camera footage from Indiana showed the dramatic moment Casey White was taken into custody and the body of his corrections officer accomplice dragged dying from their car on Monday.
Casey White is just visible beneath the hood of the police car, as sheriffs wrestle him to the ground
The wanted man is seen being wrestled to the ground by Indiana law enforcement on Monday afternoon
Casey White, in the white t-shirt, was serving a 75-year prison sentence for attempted murder and other offenses when he fled. He was also awaiting trial on charges of stabbing a woman to death during a 2015 burglary
Casey White is dragged out of the crumpled car first, by his hands. Officers kneel on him to handcuff him, then bring him away from the wreck towards another cruiser.
His denim shirt is ripped, but he appears otherwise unharmed, with his black sunglasses still on his face. He is checked over, then wrestled to the floor.
Officers then turn to Vicky White, who is described as ‘unresponsive’.
As police approach the car, one officer says: ‘We need to clear some of this s***’ to get to her.’
He asks if someone has a long stick.
Another officer, kneeling by the overturned car, says: ‘She’s still got the gun in her hand.’
One adds: ‘She’s still breathing. I can see her chest rising. Finger still on the trigger. She could pull that trigger again.’
After several minutes of discussion, the officer leans in to retrieve the gun from Vicky White’s hand. They then pull her from the car by her hands. She is then lain on the road.
DailyMail.com was there to witness the 38-year-old walk into court shortly before 10pm little more than 24 hours after his the 11-day manhunt for the pair came to an end
Casey White is seen on Tuesday night being led out of court after appearing before a judge
A third video released by the police showed them searching a Ford truck, which the couple abandoned before switching to their Cadillac.
An officer searches the vehicle, then tells his colleague: ‘There’s no paperwork. A little bit of trash and a charger and a Glock magazine loader.’
He adds: ‘It’s weird.’
The pair were carrying $29,000 in cash, four handguns and an AR-15 rifle and were prepared for a shootout when they were captured, an Indiana sheriff said on Tuesday.
The end of the manhunt left authorities trying to piece together what happened during the 11 days that elapsed after Vicky White escorted Casey White from a Florence, Alabama, jail for what she falsely claimed was a mental health evaluation.
She also told her coworkers that she felt ill and planned to see a doctor afterward.
No one realized that the two were missing until around 3.30 p.m.
As for her role in the escape, the sheriff said: ‘He was not forcing her. It was a mutual relationship.’
Authorities discovered wigs intended to hide their identities.
Dave Wedding, sheriff of Vandenburgh County, said investigators do not believe the two had relatives or other contacts in the city of 120,000.
The pair were staying in room 150 on the ground level of the motel, where accommodation costs about $44 a night not including a $25 cash deposit required upon booking
‘They thought they’d driven long enough. They wanted to stop for a while, get their bearings straight and then figure out the next place to travel,’ the sheriff said.
Authorities closed in on them after the manager of a car wash reported that a man closely resembling the 6-foot-9, 260-pound Casey White had been recorded by a surveillance camera getting out of a pickup truck.
Investigators said they located the pickup, then learned that the pair may have switched to a Cadillac, which was then spotted outside a motel nearby.
They arrived in Evansville on May 3 and received assistance by a local man whose identity remains unknown.
Speaking exclusively to DailyMail.com, Motel 41 manager Paul Shaw said: ‘They stayed in a room not in their name. Somebody else rented the room and checked them in.
‘A local man with a local ID checked in and signed the stub.
‘I never saw them – I wish I had – but they stayed in the room.’
According to Shaw: ‘People come and go here, we don’t keep track.’
There were few cars in the motel parking lot when DailyMail.com visited the two-story facility on Tuesday.
Rooms are all accessed independently by exterior doors and guests need never walk through the small reception area except to use the vending machine or to check in – a process that White and Vicky avoided.
The couples’ abandoned Ford truck – their third getaway vehicle, after a police car, and an orange SUV – is seen abandoned inside a car wash in Indiana
‘The police have all of the information and the ID. They have been here and spoken to everybody,’ Shaw said.
Shaw, an electrical engineer by trade, said that he works the morning shift and never saw White or Vicky who, police say, attempted to disguise herself with a variety of red and blonde wigs.
When the couple left the motel, police chased them down, authorities said.
The inmate appeared by video Tuesday in an Indiana courtroom, where he waived extradition, and authorities said he will be sent back to Alabama.
An attorney representing White in the murder case, Jamy Poss, declined to comment.
Vicky White, assistant director of corrections at the Lauderdale County jail, had put in for retirement ahead of the escape, and the day of the breakout, April 29, was her last day of work.
A woman who worked with her for 16 years could barely speak through tears on Tuesday.
‘I know she did wrong and made a terrible mistake, but she’s still your friend,’ said Sherry Sylvester, a longtime jail employee.
She said that White often tried to help prisoners, particularly ones without family.
But Sylvester said she never saw White do anything that crossed the line.
‘She did everything by the book,’ Sylvester said.
Connie Moore, Casey White’s mother, said she last spoke with him by phone the day before the escape.
Casey White, who is 6ft 9 tall, is seen towering over the guards in Alabama
She said her son may not have known what was about to happen.
‘Everything was just as normal as it could be. I doubt he even knew he was leaving when she came in there to get him,’ Moore said.
A warrant was issued on May 2 for Vicky White charging her with permitting or facilitating escape.
Authorities said the plan appeared to have been in the works for some time.
She sold her house for about half its market value and bought an SUV that she stashed at a shopping center without license plates.
Asked where the bulk of the money had gone, Sheriff Wedding told DailyMail.com: ‘They spent it. They spent it on multiple vehicles, equipment, a gun, hotel, meals, clothes.
‘$60,000 can go pretty quick if you’re spending $6,000 a pop.’
Vicky used some of the cash and an alias to purchase the bronze 2007 Ford Edge in which they initially fled before abandoning it on a rural road in Tennessee about two hours north of the Florence, Alabama, jail from which White was sprung.
According to US Marshalls the couple then spent $6,000 on a Ford F-150 which was spotted parked at an odd angle at an Evansville carwash where White was also pictured on surveillance footage.
Both Casey and Vicky White had multiple changes of clothes and wigs with them when they were caught
The escaped prisoner, standing 6ft 9 tall, towers over the Indiana officers
US Marshals Commander Chad Hunt said at Tuesday’s press conference that the couple are believed to have purchased another vehicle.
On Tuesday morning, Lauderdale County Sheriff Rick Singleton said she was the ‘mastermind’ of their logistical escape plan – but it’s unclear who came up with the idea to get Casey out.
‘To go from day one, thinking she’s been kidnapped and maybe in danger then finding out she took him out willingly, then trying to determine was she threatened or coerced in some way…then finding out that she was basically the mastermind behind the whole plan. It’s been an emotional roller-coaster,’ Singleton said.
‘Obviously, he was behind bars – he couldn’t have planned too much behind bars.
‘Personally, I think she was the one who put the plan together.
‘She was in a position of knowledge. She made sure the other armed deputies were out, she arranged to purchase the getaway car, she sold her house got her hands on cash, went shopping.
‘She obviously put the plan together,’ he told CNN.
Singleton now believes that Casey and Vicky were in a ‘romantic relationship’ and that Vicky was ‘just as concerned about coming back and facing her family and her co-workers as she was the charges.’
It took officials at Lauderdale County Jail three hours to realize the capital murder suspect and senior jail official had orchestrated an out-of-a-movie escape on April 29
Vicky was a widow and had no children.
Before she died, Singleton said of his employee: ‘I hope she survives this. She has some answers to give us.’
He continued: ‘You don’t know who you can trust.
‘I had every bit of trust in Vicky White. She has been an exemplary employee. What in the world prompted her to pull off something like this, I don’t know.
‘I don’t know if we’ll ever know.’
Vicky was set to be put in a different facility than the Lauderdale County jail where she worked for 17 years and helped Casey escape.
Casey will be sent back to state prison.
On Monday afternoon, Singleton thanked investigators from the various national agencies that helped them capture the pair, along with the media for shedding light on the story.
‘Most escapes – from a county jail especially – they’re not planned. They’re just sort of spontaneous. There are no resources available, no plan in place,’ he said during a press conference on Monday evening.
‘This escape was obviously well planned and calculated. A lot of preparation went into this. They had plenty of resources, had cash,’ he said, referring to the money that Vicky had on her from the recent sale of her home.
‘They had everything they needed to pull this off.
‘We were starting from ground zero, and not only that, we started – they got a six-hour head start on us.’
Singleton added: ‘We got a dangerous man off the streets today. He’s never gonna see the light of day again. That’s a good thing.’
He promised to keep Casey White shackled day and night upon his return, according to NewsNation’s Brian Entin.
‘I’ll probably hear from a civil rights attorney but I don’t care,’ Singleton said.