New video has been released in connection with a Friday incident that saw an Alabama corrections officer boldly break an inmate out of jail.
Security footage from the Lauderdale County Jail shows Vicky White, assistant director of corrections for the jail, holding the door open for alleged murderer Casey Cole White (no relation) as he walks out of the facility.
Vicky, 56, escorts him into the back of a patrol cruiser and the two drive off.
Law enforcement has been searching for the pair of fugitives since Friday and a preliminary investigation revealed that the two had a “special relationship,” though it’s unclear if it was romantic.
Authorities were initially unsure if Vicky was coerced into helping Casey, but police now believe she helped orchestrate the escape.
Sheriff Rick Singleton said on Tuesday that “investigators received information from inmates at the Lauderdale County Detention Center over the weekend that there was a special relationship between Director White and inmate Casey White.”
“That relationship has now been confirmed through our investigation by independent sources and means,” the Sheriff added.
Casey, 38, was sentenced to 75 years in prison for a series of violent crimes in 2015 including burglary and attempted murder. He was awaiting trial for a capital murder charge in connection with the 2020 fatal stabbing of a 58-year-old woman, Connie Ridgeway.
Casey allegedly confessed to the murder but pleaded not guilty to the crime by reason of insanity. If convicted, Casey could face execution.
Before Friday, Vicky was described as an “exemplary employee,” and, in fact, was about to retire. She had sold her house and told colleagues that she was planning to spend her time off on the beach.
Instead, on her last day at work, Vicky told her coworkers that she was driving Casey to the courthouse for a mental evaluation, allowing her to leave with the inmate with little suspicion. There was no scheduled mental evaluation.
The two abandoned the cruiser they escaped in at a nearby shopping mall parking lot and they were last seen driving a copper-coloured Ford Edge with Alabama plates.
The U.S. Marshals Service is offering a US$10,000 reward for any information that leads to the capture of the fugitives.
Officials say that the pair may be armed with an AR-15 rifle and a shotgun. At six feet nine inches tall, Casey is considered “armed and extremely dangerous.”
Singleton warned law enforcement to not “take any chances” with him.
“He has nothing to lose,” he said.