The Alabama jail official who allegedly absconded with a capital murder suspect may have been “brainwashed” into helping him escape, according to her former mother-in-law.
“Maybe he’s got her brainwashed,” Frances White, 88, told The Daily Beast about Casey Cole White, who vanished with Vicky White, the assistant director of corrections for Lauderdale County.
Police had said on Tuesday that Vicky and Casey, who are not related, developed a “special relationship” after she had gotten cozy with him during her shifts at the rural jail.
The sheriff’s office declined to expound on what it meant by “special relationship.”
Frances also described Vicky as frugal, telling the Daily Beast that she had saved a substantial amount of money, which could help her remain on the lam for some time.
“She had said that she’d like to live in Florida, that’s the only thing I can think of,” Frances said in a phone interview Tuesday.
She said her son, Thomas White, died in January from complications related to Parkinson’s disease.
“I’m just proud he wasn’t still alive, ’cause he still thought she was a good person,” she said. “I can’t imagine her running off with that guy, but you never know. He walked into a woman’s house and stabbed her.”
Casey was charged with two counts of capital murder in September 2020 in the stabbing death of Connie Ridgeway, 58, and was already serving a 75-year sentence for a 2015 crime spree where he was convicted of shooting a person and a dog, officials said.
“Everybody’s trying to figure out what made her do it,” Frances told The Daily Beast. “Somebody said, ‘Maybe she was just having a bad day.’ I said, ‘Well, that’s not an excuse.’”
She added: “I don’t have any idea where she is,” noting that the two had six hours to get away and could be anywhere.
Authorities announced Monday a warrant for Vicky’s arrest for permitting or facilitating escape in the first degree.
The rogue jail official had reportedly filed her retirement papers the day before she and Casey disappeared on April 29.
About five weeks earlier, she sold her house and moved in with her mother, Pat Davis, according to WAAY.
Frances said her former daughter-in-law had spent years saving money.
“She had money before she sold her home,” she told The Daily Beast. “She saved her money. I figure if she’s still got her money, she’s still got enough to live on for a while.”
She said her two surviving sons are in just as much shock as she is.
“They can’t believe it either. My oldest son, no way could he picture her leaving with him… It looks like she helped him escape,” Frances said, adding that everyone in her family hopes someone will come forward with a lead.
“You know, there’s a $10,000 reward out, and somebody will tell them something,” she said.