The investigation has illuminated what authorities believe to be a romantic relationship between Vicky White, assistant director of corrections in Lauderdale County, and Casey White, who was being held at the Lauderdale County Detention Facility on murder charges, Sheriff Rick Singleton told CNN.
A warrant has been issued for Vicky White’s arrest on charges of permitting or facilitating escape in the first degree, the sheriff said Monday, as authorities grow more confident that the officer willingly aided the inmate in his escape, instead of being forced or coerced.
Vicky White, 56, and Casey White, 38, who are not related, went missing Friday morning after she said she was taking the inmate to the courthouse before going to seek medical attention because she wasn’t feeling well. The two never arrived at the courthouse and Vicky White didn’t make it to the medical facility.
Authorities now believe the inmate and officer had a romantic relationship which extended into Vicky White’s non-work hours, according to the sheriff. They traced the relationship back to as early as 2020, when Casey White, who was already serving time in a state prison, was first brought to Lauderdale County for an arraignment, Singleton said.
“As far as we know that was the earliest physical contact they had,” Singleton said, noting the pair continued to communicate after Casey White was transferred back the prison.
Singleton said the two had a “special relationship” that was confirmed, in part, by inmates at the detention facility who told investigators Casey White “was getting extra food on his trays” and “was getting privileges no one else got and this was all coming from her.”
Investigators are now pouring through surveillance images from the detention center to learn more.
How the escape unfolded
Surveillance video released by the detention center Tuesday shows Casey White, shackled and handcuffed in an orange jumpsuit, being escorted into the back of Vicky White’s patrol car Friday morning.
From there, Singleton says, the pair drove to a shopping center less than ten minutes away, abandoned the patrol car and got into a gold/copper-colored 2007 Ford Edge SUV.
Vicky White bought the car in the town of Rogersville, which is about 25 miles east of Lauderdale County, and staged it in the parking lot the night before their disappearance, Singleton said.
“We know that there was never any effort to go to the courthouse. They went straight to Florence Square parking lot, dumped the patrol car, got in the other vehicle and left,” Singleton said.
“We assume they are going to ditch that car at the first opportunity when they get wind that the description is out there, so we’re back to square one,” he added.
Investigators have also offered more details on Casey White’s history at the Lauderdale County facility.
While being held there in 2020 for his arraignment on murder charges related to the 2015 death of 58-year-old Connie Ridgeway, authorities discovered he had a plan to escape and take a hostage and had a makeshift knife on him.
Upon the discovery, Casey White was transferred back to the state prison where he was already serving a 75-year sentence for a number of crimes in…