A former Alabama corrections officer and a jail inmate who led authorities on an 11-day manhunt this year spoke hundreds of times by phone before the inmate escaped, and most of the calls were sexually explicit, a law enforcement official said Thursday.
Lauderdale County Sheriff Rick Singleton said that so far investigators have listened to a little more than half of the 949 calls that Vicky White and Casey White made to each other from August 2021 to February, while he was in prison at the William Donaldson Correctional Facility. The pair weren’t related.
When the calls began, Casey White had been in prison for a series of 2015 crimes that included a home invasion, a carjacking and flight from police. While he was behind bars, he confessed to a separate crime — the 2015 murder of Connie Ridgeway, 58 — and was moved to the Lauderdale County jail in February to await trial.
Vicky White, the jail’s assistant director of corrections, had been an employee there for nearly two decades. On April 29, the day that was supposed to be her last before she retired, she and Casey White vanished.
“So far we haven’t found anything in relation to the escape,” Singleton said. “Most of it is basically phone sex.”
“That averages out to about four times a day,” he added.
A lawyer for Casey White didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
In early July, roughly two months after Vicky White died by suicide as authorities closed in on the pair, Casey White was charged with felony murder in her death. He has pleaded not guilty.
Officials have said that the pair had a "special relationship" and that they had been in touch for a couple of years. After the May 10 police pursuit ended when they crashed a Cadillac sedan in an Indiana ditch, Casey White emerged from the car and said that his "wife" had taken her own life and that he "didn't do it."
Singleton said Thursday he believed Casey White had manipulated his former employee — a practice he described as routine in the jail.
"She'd been on the job 17 years," he said. "She'd seen young officers come in and get manipulated. Everyone's been approached. We tell them to be ready for it, and she'd be the one that would coach them."
With Casey White, Singleton alleged, "she got conned herself."