Saturday July 2, 2022

Prosecutors have not ruled out the possibility that Alabama escapee Casey White will face charges over the death of his jailhouse lover Vicky White.

Lauderdale County District Attorney Chris Connolly told The Independent that White, 38, could face fresh charges over the doomed prison escape and 10-day manhunt as the investigation continues.

“I intend to prosecute him both for the capital murder and the escape and other related charges that we are looking at,” he said.

The DA, who had worked closely with Ms White throughout her 17-year career as a corrections officer, did not elaborate on what the charges would be.

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However he said that investigators had received information from their counterparts in Indiana, where the couple were finally captured.

When asked if the charges could relate to the death of Ms White, the DA said he “couldn’t comment on that”.

White has already been charged with escape in the first degree and is now back in Alabama being held in a maximum security prison.

This comes on top of the 75-year prison sentence he is currently serving and two counts of capital murder that he was already charged with over the 2015 stabbing death of 58-year-old Connie Ridgeway.

White’s trial will begin in June for the murder of Ms Ridgeway, who was found brutally stabbed to death in her apartment in Rogersville, Alabama, on 23 October 2015.

The 38-year-old has already confessed to the crime, after he sent a letter to the Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Office in 2020 admitting to killing the mother-of-two.

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During a subsequent interview with authorities, he allegedly gave details about the crime that had not been made public and which only the killer could have known, leading authorities to finally bring charges over the cold case.

He was charged with two counts of capital murder in 2020.

<img src="https://static.independent.co.uk/2022/05/13/16/SEI103319311.jpg?quality=75&width=982&height=726&auto=webp" srcset="https://static.independent.co.uk/2022/05/13/16/SEI103319311.jpg?quality=75&width=320&auto=webp&crop=3346:2313,smart 320w, https://static.independent.co.uk/2022/05/13/16/SEI103319311.jpg?quality=75&width=640&auto=webp&crop=3346:2313,smart 640w" alt="

Escaped inmate Casey White arrives at the Lauderdale County Courthouse in Florence, Alabama, on Tuesday night

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Escaped inmate Casey White arrives at the Lauderdale County Courthouse in Florence, Alabama, on Tuesday night

(AP)

Prosecutors say he was paid to carry out the hit on his victim. It is not clear how much money he made.

White initially pleaded guilty before changing his plea to not guilty by reason of mental illness.

If convicted, he faces the death penalty.

White is already serving a 75-year sentence after being convicted of a 2015 crime spree where he tried to kill his ex-girlfriend, shot another woman, held several victims at gunpoint and shot a dog dead.

He was finally captured in a dramatic 100 mile per hour police chase that culminated in a standoff with officers where he had threatened to shoot himself in the head.

White was taken into custody following a brief police chase after he and Ms White were tracked down to Evansville, Indiana, on Monday.

The couple, who were not related or married, had been on the run since Ms White helped break her lover free from the jail she worked in back on 29 April.

As they sped off in their Cadillac, officers rammed the couple’s getaway car off the road into a ditch.

White surrendered to authorities while the 56-year-old corrections officer shot herself in the head, officials said.

She died from her injuries hours later and her death has been ruled a suicide from a single self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.

Dramatic police dashcam and bodycam footage released by police shows White being cuffed and detained by officers while Ms White’s limp body is pulled from the vehicle, with the gun still in her hand.

<img src="https://static.independent.co.uk/2022/05/11/05/Alabama-Missing-Jail-Official_33287.jpg?quality=75&width=982&height=726&auto=webp" srcset="https://static.independent.co.uk/2022/05/11/05/Alabama-Missing-Jail-Official_33287.jpg?quality=75&width=320&auto=webp&crop=3000:1992,smart 320w, https://static.independent.co.uk/2022/05/11/05/Alabama-Missing-Jail-Official_33287.jpg?quality=75&width=640&auto=webp&crop=3000:1992,smart 640w" alt="

Vicky White died from a gunshot wound to the head

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Vicky White died from a gunshot wound to the head

(Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Office)

Officials also released a 911 call made from the fugitives’ car during the chase, where Ms White is heard saying they should “get out and run” moments before a shot was fired.

A nationwide manhunt was first launched back on 29 April when Ms White picked the inmate up from Lauderdale County jail claiming that she was taking him for a mental health evaluation at Lauderdale County Courthouse.

She told her coworkers that once she had escorted him to court she was going to seek medical attention for herself as she felt unwell.

The pair never arrived at the courthouse and White had no scheduled court appearance or appointments that day.

Several hours later, the alarm was raised when Ms White failed to return to the jail and could not be reached by her colleagues.

Investigators have since said that the couple were having a “jailhouse romance” for the last two years and that Ms White had also sold her home, withdrawn $90,000 in cash from her bank accounts and filed for retirement in the days and weeks before the pair vanished.

DA Connolly told The Independent he was “shocked” to learn what his trusted colleague had done, saying she was well-liked at the jail.

“She was a solid employee,” he said. “She wasn’t a big talker but she was professional in her job and did it well. That’s why she was so well respected and trusted.”

He added: “I guess the why would she throw her life away is the question we’ll never have answered.”

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