The Alabama fugitive, who had been in a “jailhouse romance” for nearly two years before Casey was kicked out of the Lauderdale County Jail on April 29, was found hiding in plain sight on Monday in a dirty, roadside motel about 300 miles away . ,
With cops hot on their tails, they fled Motel 41 in Evansville and followed a police chase that ended later that afternoon when members of the US Marshals Service barged into the couple’s latest getaway car, taking care of it in a ditch. sent.
The pair had planned to end their time in a bloody fire of glory by starting a shootout with the police – but instead, Vicky turned himself a gun when the police stopped, while Casey surrendered. .
Police said the couple was driving inside the Cadillac, giving police over $29,000 in cash, a series of wigs they used to disguise themselves and a small arsenal, including four handguns and an AR-15. , said the police.
Investigators later determined they would pay a homeless person to check into their hotel, where they stayed for about a week, so they could fly under the radar.
“They are criminals. Their plan was flawed and it failed. Thank God,” Vanderburgh County Sheriff David Wedding told reporters during a news conference on Tuesday.
“members of the US task force originally rammed the vehicle and pushed it into the ditch and we later learned that they had not done so, the fugitive was going to engage in a shootout with law enforcement. That action led to Would have saved the lives of many of my deputy and fellow law enforcement officers.
“I applaud him for a job well done.”
While police eventually caught the couple, the star-crossed lovers left behind a trail of bread crumbs on their journey north from Alabama—and it was the public’s tips that finally turned them in.
The start of a “planned” escape
On the morning of April 29, Vicky told his coworkers that it was his last day at work as Lauderdale County’s assistant corrections director after filing his retirement paperwork the night before.
However, unbeknownst to him, Vicky had sold his Lexington home about 10 days earlier, emptied his bank accounts and had been sleeping in a Quality Inn for the past two nights, as he prepared to make a “planned” escape to the police. was ready to do. ,
The 56-year-old widow was wrapping up with the department for close to 17 years and when she told them she was taking 38-year-old Casey for a mental health evaluation, they didn’t question her, even though it was a prisoner run alone. against the protocol for.
Vicky pulled his sheriff’s cruiser into the prison’s Sally Port at about 9:29 that morning, and minutes later was captured on surveillance video walking around with Casey, tied in arms and legs and in an orange jumpsuit Was.
Instead of going to the courthouse for an appointment, which was never determined by investigators until later, Vicky drove to the Florence Square shopping center, abandoned his sheriff’s cruiser and took off in an orange 2007 Ford Edge, which he had bought as a Bought under the alias.
It wasn’t until 3:30 that afternoon that investigators realized something was terribly wrong, when Casey never returned to the detention center and repeated calls to Vicky’s phone went to voicemail.
By then, the couple had already crossed the state border and had seemingly disappeared.
Hours after they left, Vicky and Casey leave the distinctive Ford Edge, which is later found spray painted in parts with hunter green as camouflage on a country road in Williamson County, Tennessee “somewhere in the middle”. had gone. ,
Lauderdale County Sheriff Rick Singleton said the couple must have had a mechanical failure, noting that the car was abandoned and how quickly they abandoned it.
At 1:50 p.m. that same day, a passerby called the local sheriff’s office to report the abandoned vehicle, which was towed and confiscated later that afternoon.
At the time, police did not yet know whether the two were missing, or that Vicky had bought a Ford Edge, and it took another week for investigators to connect the car to the couple.
Now on foot, the couple needed to act fast to get back on the road and they soon managed to buy a Ford F-150 using about $90,000 in cash, which Vicky had taken to banks in the days before their escape. extracted from a series of
Three days later, they arrived at Motel 41 in Evansville, where they paid to rent a room for 14 days to a local homeless man, Wedding said.
,[Casey] Said he was just trying to find a place to hide and lie down,” Shaadi explained.
“They thought they’d drive for quite a while and they wanted to stop for a while, get their bearings straight and figure out their next place to travel.”
Casey, a 6-foot-9 Hawking figure tattooed on the back of his head and a splatter of white supremacist ink all over his body, decides to take the F-150 to the Weinbach car wash the next day instead. Did. He was caught in surveillance footage washing the truck unnecessarily, wearing a hat and sunglasses.
He later abandoned it and flew in a Cadillac, police said, but the decision ultimately proved fatal.
Car wash manager James Stinson saw the truck last Wednesday and immediately thought it was suspicious, he told News Nation.
“I walked up to the truck and went, ‘Oh my god, maybe it’s a guy from Alabama.’ I walked over and looked at the truck because I thought he might be dead, who knows? So I backed up. I opened the door, it has the keys. I start it,” Stinson told News Nation. told.
“They sent a cop out. The cop says, ‘Okay, I can’t do anything. This is not a report of theft.’ ,
It took another four days for the US Marshals Service to realize that the truck was linked to Casey and Vicky, and by then, Stinson had already pulled over the car.
,[The USMS] asked me where did you tow it? And I told him, then he said, well, there’s going to be a flood of marshals in your house in 30 minutes. Well, he never showed up until the next morning,” Stinson told the outlet.
“The news media kicked them out. You all are doing your job, they were just hiding, but you guys kicked them out so they can be caught.”
The next day, the couple was taken into custody – with Vicky barely clinging to life after he shot himself, police said.
She died on Monday evening, the same day she was struck with identity theft and forgery charges, in addition to allowing or facilitating an escape charge filed shortly after her escape.
twisted criminal history
Little is known about the couple’s plans, or the exact extent of their relationship, but Singleton believes they first met in August 2020 when Casey was sent to Lauderdale County Jail to face murder charges. was transferred to.
At the time, Casey Williamson E. Donaldson was serving a 75-year sentence at the Correctional Facility, a maximum-security prison in Bessemer, when he was convicted on a 2015 crime spree that included attempted murder, kidnapping and armed robbery.
That summer, he wrote a letter to Lieutenant Brad Potts of the Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Office, allegedly confessing to the stabbing death of 58-year-old Connie Ridgeway on October 23, 2015, in a home invasion.
Potts, one of the lead investigators in the case, claims that Casey said he was paid for Ridgeway’s murder and then provided information about the crime that had never been made public before.
Casey’s mother, Connie White, disputes that Casey killed Ridgeway – adding that she just wants to go back to the Lauderdale County lockup.
“The only reason he came out of Lauderdale County was to get out of jail,” Connie previously told The Post.
“He wrote a letter to say that he murdered that woman but he didn’t actually kill her, that’s all he did to get back here… he just wanted to get out of that prison because it’s so bad And there was no food.”
She said she didn’t know who Vicky was, but added that Casey had a “pen friend” with whom she kept in touch.
“Respect” for Vicky
For nearly two years, Casey was in and out of Lauderdale prison, where Vicky worked as his new murder case worked his way through the courtroom. Singleton said that all the time, the pair became more comfortable and comfortable and the two kept in touch over the phone whenever Casey was transferred back to the Donaldson prison.
During his tenure with Lauderdale County, Vicky gained a reputation for treating some prisoners as “equal” and developing a relationship with them, said Chad Hunt, commander of the US Marshals Service’s Gulf Coast Regional Fugitive Task Force, WAAY 31. told.
“He treated these prisoners on an equal footing, if you want. He had a lot of respect for him,” Hunt said, as he expressed concern that some of these prisoners might have helped Vicky while she was running.
“Some things we have to account for” [for] And sit back and watch as the 17 year old has contact with other inmates who are potentially out there right now… is there another way she’s taking advantage of that?
As for Casey, her mother, Connie, insists that she is no “monster” and one of her former attorneys says she is mentally ill and addicted to drugs.
“When he’s on medication and in a supervised environment … he’s a decent person,” attorney Dale Bryant told local news station WAFF last week.
“When he comes out of captivity, he is unable to stay on his medication and he also self-medicates by smoking methamphetamine or taking other illegal substances.”
Bryant accurately predicted that Casey was planning suicide by a cop and said he made the same attempt after his crime spree in 2015.
“He was trying to shoot officers and that’s my fear of how this situation will end,” he said on Friday.
“Casey might try to shoot [cops] To try and get them to shoot him.”
For now, the fugitive’s plan has failed.
He will be taken back to Alabama for a concussion late Tuesday and will most likely be sent back to where he started – a maximum-security lockup.