Female sheriff’s office worker vanishes with capital murder suspect while driving him to court
An Alabama corrections officer and an inmate facing the death penalty for murder were being hunted Friday night after she picked him up from prison to transport him to a supposed mental health evaluation and never showed up.
Vicky White, deputy director of corrections for the sheriff’s department, picked up Casey Cole White, 38, from a detention center Friday morning at 9:30 am, armed with a 9mm handgun.
She said that she needed to take Casey White in for a mental health evaluation.
But on Friday afternoon, Lauderdale County Sheriff Rick Singleton said no mental health evaluation was scheduled.
Vicky White’s car was found abandoned in a shopping mall at 3:30pm and the couple has not been seen since.
“I am extremely, extremely concerned that he is not in custody,” said Lauderdale County District Attorney Chris Connolly, adding that the FBI is assisting with the search, in addition to state and local authorities.
‘This is a very dangerous situation.’
Casey White was facing the death penalty for the October 2015 murder of 58-year-old Connie Ridgeway at her home in Rogersville, Alabama.
Vicky White, deputy director of corrections for the sheriff’s department, was missing Friday night, having picked up Casey Cole White (no relation) from prison.
Connie Ridgeway is pictured with her sons Austin and Cameron. She was murdered in October 2015 in what her killer said was a contract hit. No reason has ever been given.
Ridgeway was found stabbed to death in a murder that shocked the town of 1,500 people, 50 miles west of Huntsville.
People said she was known for her kindness and willingness to help others, and the community for many years held a vigil every October in her memory.
Casey White was arrested in December 2015, after 32 years, following a crime spree in Tennessee and Alabama.
In one night, he staged a home invasion, two carjackings and multiple shootings that left a dog dead and a woman injured.
The crimes were followed by a chase, where speeds reached over 100 miles per hour, WHERE informed.
He ended up with a stolen car stuck in a field south of Huntsville, and the officers, who were evidently well known to him, pleaded with him to drop the gun and turn himself in.
White got out of the vehicle with a gun and threatened to shoot himself and the officers unless he could talk to Limestone Sheriff Mike Blakely.
Body camera footage shows officers trying to get White to surrender by offering him smokeless tobacco and Sun Drop citrus soda while they waited for Blakely to arrive.
Police appear in December 2015 taking Casey White into custody after a wild rampage in Tennessee and Alabama that ended in a 100 mph car chase, and his stolen car got stuck in a field.
Casey White appears in court in 2020, accused of killing Connie Ridgeway. She pleaded not guilty, due to insanity
White is seen during the hearing in the Ridgeway murder case.
Casey White was found guilty on a total of nine counts, including attempting to kill his ex-girlfriend and kidnapping his two roommates. Other charges included robbery in the first degree, robbery in the first degree, robbery in the third degree, breaking and entering a vehicle, animal cruelty for shooting a dog and trying to elude it.
He was sentenced in April 2019 to 75 years in prison.
In June 2020, he wrote to Lauderdale County requesting a meeting with the sheriff’s office and confessed to killing Ridgeway, providing a detailed description of the crime scene.
He said he was paid to kill her, although no motive for hiring a hitman has ever been revealed.
In October 2020, 37-year-old Casey White appeared in court for an arraignment hearing and requested to remain in the Lauderdale County Jail rather than return to prison. WAFF informed.
His request was denied, after authorities said they believed he was conspiring to escape from the Lauderdale County Jail.
They had found a makeshift knife, hidden in the showers, and suspected that White intended to use it to force someone to let him out.
“Yesterday we received information that he had shanked and intended to escape today and take a hostage,” Lauderdale County District Attorney Connolly said during the hearing.
‘Our deputies did a great job.
“I found the handle and removed that threat this morning, so obviously we’re not equipped to house someone like that for that long in our jail, which is why we’re happy the judge ordered him back into the corrections department.”
White, having confessed, later pleaded not guilty, due to insanity.