White 38, confessed to killing 59-year-old Connie Ridgeway during a home invasion on October 23, 2015. The now-captured fugitive was already serving a 75-year sentence for a December 2015 crime spree at the time of his admittance.
Ridgeway was beaten and stabbed to death in her apartment that year in what White allegedly claimed was a murder-for-hire.
Her son, Austin Williams, told Fox News Digital on Wednesday that local politics between law enforcement leadership got in the way of solving his mother’s murder in a timely manner.
“I think the public needs to know about that kind of behavior for accountability. And, hopefully, the case … I think it does need a look-at from a different level,” Williams said, adding that perhaps a higher-level investigation into what happened in his mother’s case and how it should have been handled by law enforcement would not “be inappropriate to ask.”
The Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Department had apparently responded to the scene in 2015 and told Ridgeway’s family at the time that the agency would handle Ridgeway’s case if permitted to do so, according to Williams. However, Williams also claims that the Rogersville police chief at the time, whom he alleges was out of town when his mother was murdered, asked the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency to take over the investigation instead of going to the scene of the crime himself, according to Williams.
That request apparently forced the sheriff’s office out of the investigation and handed authority over to the state, which Williams said acted slowly in the case. Five years went by before Casey White eventually admitted to killing Ridgeway. Sheriff Singleton did not immediately respond to Fox News Digital.
“How would you feel if it was your mother, your grandmother? And this is Rogersville. Small town. Nothing ever happens here,” Williams explained, baffled that Holden would not want to show up to the scene of Ridgway’s murder in a town that typically sees very few homicides each year.
Ridgeway’s case was pending at the time of White’s April 29 escape from William E. Donaldson Correction Facility with Lauderdale County Detention Center’s assistant director of corrections Vicky White, 56, who is now deceased.
Vicky White was set to retire on the day of the escape and told colleagues that she was going to live near the beach. The correctional officer ultimately shot herself in the head following a brief police chase in Evansville, Indiana, on Monday, officials said.
Casey White is charged with escape in the first degree. The suspect also faces a maximum punishment of the death penalty if convicted in Ridgeway’s death.
Fox News’ Michael Ruiz and Austin Westfall contributed to this report.