Escaped Alabama inmate and corrections officer in custody

By Maureen Chowdhury and Meg Wagner, CNN

Updated 11:15 p.m. ET, May 9, 2022
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6:42 p.m. ET, May 9, 2022

An Alabama sheriff explains why Vicky White and Casey White were so hard to catch

From CNN's Melissa Gray

Lauderdale County Sheriff Rick Singleton
Lauderdale County Sheriff Rick Singleton (CNN)

Lauderdale County Sheriff Rick Singleton said he "always expected" that escaped inmate Casey White and corrections officer Vicky White would be caught, but he described the hunt for the two as challenging because the escape "was obviously well planned and calculated.

"I knew we would catch them. It was just a matter of time," he said at a news conference moments ago. "What was so challenging about this escape was, 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 about what am I gonna do when I get out here other than just run."

He continued:

"This escape was obviously well planned and calculated. A lot of preparation went into this. They had plenty of resources, had cash, had vehicles, had everything they needed to pull this off, and that’s what made this last week and a half so challenging. We were starting from ground zero, and not only that, we started – they got a six-hour head start on us."

The pair was located at a hotel in Indiana and then a vehicle pursuit ensued, Singleton said. The sheriff said that the pair will be brought back to Alabama for arraignment.

6:39 p.m. ET, May 9, 2022

Indiana sheriff says Vicky White's injuries are "very serious"

From CNN’s Jenn Selva

The injuries Vicky White sustained by her self-inflicted gunshot wounds are “very serious,” according to Vanderburgh County, Indiana, Sheriff Dave Wedding.

Wedding told reporters during a news conference that she's in "pretty serious shape" after the crash that led to the capture and arrest of both Vicky White and Casey White.

According to Wedding, the pair is believed to have been in Evansville since May 3.

"It's hard to believe they've been here that many days, but we're lucky that we stumbled upon them today," Wedding said.

6:30 p.m. ET, May 9, 2022

Vicky White won't be housed in the facility where she worked when she's extradited to Alabama

From CNN’s Jamiel Lynch

Lauderdale County Sheriff Rick Singleton said a deputy is headed to Vicky White’s home to talk to her mother to let her know her daughter is in custody. 

Singleton said that arrangements have already been made for Vicky White to be housed in another facility not in Lauderdale County, where she worked, once she is extradited back to Alabama to face the charges against her. 

One of the charges that Vicky White faces is facilitating the escape, which is a Class C Felony and carries up to 10 years in prison, Lauderdale County District Attorney Chris Connolly said during the press conference. 

Vicky White and Casey White were captured in Evansville, Indiana, on Monday after being on the run since April 29. 

Singleton said they know Casey White will eventually be brought back to Lauderdale County to face the charges against him. 

“He will be in a cell by himself,” the sheriff said.

“He will stay in handcuffs and shackles while he’s in that cell and if he wants to sue me for violating his civil rights, so be it. He’s not getting out of this jail again. I’ll assure you that.” 

6:28 p.m. ET, May 9, 2022

Here's what we know about Casey White

From CNN's Eric Levenson

AN
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Casey White's criminal history dates back a decade. Court documents alleged he beat his brother in the face and head with an axe-sledgehammer handle, landing him in prison in 2012 for more than three years.

Then in 2015, he carried out a crime spree including a home invasion, carjacking and a police chase, according to the Marshals Service. In March 2016, he was indicted on 15 counts and was ultimately convicted on seven of those counts, including attempted murder and robbery, according to Alabama records. He is serving a 75-year prison sentence on those charges.

According to the Marshals Service, White allegedly threatened to kill his ex-girlfriend and her sister in 2015 if he got out of prison and said he wanted the police to kill him. The agency said it has advised his "potential targets" of the threat and taken protective actions.

Josh Goan was one of the victims in the 2015 case. He said White broke into his truck, stole his firearm, and then used the firearm to carjack his neighbor and the neighbor's infant baby. Goan was a witness in the trial and told CNN it was a surreal experience to see how little remorse White had.

"I was very satisfied that they gave him enough time that by the time — if he ever — gets out, he would not be able to do anything. I took security in that and definitely have lost a little bit of peace (since the escape)," he said. "The fact that he is out in the world is a terrible thing for society."

White was serving out his 75-year sentence at the William E. Donaldson Correction Facility in Jefferson County, Alabama.

But in 2020, he allegedly confessed to the 2015 stabbing death of 59-year-old Connie Ridgeway and was charged with two counts of capital murder. He pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity and was brought to the Lauderdale County's detention center to attend court hearings in the case, authorities said.

There, he came into contact with Vicky White, who was working as the assistant director of corrections for Lauderdale County.

He was brought back to the Lauderdale detention center on Feb. 25, Sheriff Rick Singleton said.

It is not the first time White tried to escape prison, nor is it the first time he gained the trust of other correctional officials.

In 2020, while White was being held in Lauderdale County's detention center, authorities learned he planned to escape the jail and take a hostage, Singleton said.

"We shook him down, and we did find a shank in his possession — a shank is a prison knife — and we retrieved that. We immediately had him shipped back to the Department of Corrections," Singleton said.

An attorney who represented White through 2020 told CNN affiliate WAFF the latest escape attempt was in itself not a surprise.

"I was not shocked Casey escaped," attorney Dale Bryant said. "I was shocked of who he escaped with. I had never heard of her before. But this was not the first escape attempt Casey had attempted while at Lauderdale County facing those charges."

Prior to the current escape, Casey White and Vicky White had developed a "special relationship," which included extra food, Singleton said.

"We were told Casey White got special privileges and was treated differently while in the facility than the other inmates," he said.

Likewise, Casey White had previously gained the trust of officials of the Limestone County Sheriff's office.

"When he was in Limestone County after a little while he had earned the trust of the Sheriff's department at that time, and they allowed him to be a trustee inside the jail," Bryant told WAFF. CNN has reached out to the Limestone County Sheriff's office for more information about its trustee program.

Read more here.

6:23 p.m. ET, May 9, 2022

A tip led to the capture of Casey White and Vicky White

From CNN’s Jamiel Lynch

The scene at the end of the police chase in Evansville, Indianna. 
The scene at the end of the police chase in Evansville, Indianna. 

A tip that came from citizens led to the capture and arrest of Vicky White and Casey White in Evansville, Indiana, Lauderdale County Sheriff Rick Singleton said.

The tip came in Sunday night, Singleton said.

“This has ended a very long and stressful and challenging week and a half,” he said.

The pair was located at a hotel and then a vehicle pursuit ensued, he said. The sheriff said that the pair will be brought back to Alabama for arraignment.

"She has some answers to give us," Singleton said of Vicky White.

The sheriff said there is no evidence that anyone else was involved.

“You don’t know who you can trust. I had every bit of trust in Vicky White. She has been an exemplary employee, and what in the world provoked her, prompted her to pull a stunt like this, I don’t know. I don’t know if we’ll ever know," Singleton said.
6:45 p.m. ET, May 9, 2022

Casey White and Vicky White in custody

From CNN’s Jaide Garcia and Joe Sutton 

Alabama fugitive Casey White and corrections officer Vicky White are in custody after a pursuit in Evansville, Indiana, the Lauderdale County sheriff said in a news conference.

Casey White surrendered and Vicky White has been transported to a hospital.

Vicky White’s injury was a self-inflicted gunshot wound, the US Marshals tells CNN.

No law enforcement officers fired any shots, according to Lauderdale County Sheriff Rick Singleton.