US police say they have captured an escaped inmate and a guard suspected of helping him after a 10-day manhunt.
Murder suspect Casey White, 38, was in custody while Vicky White (no relation), 56, was in hospital with an injury following the arrest in Indiana, officers said.
The pair, believed to be romantically invovled, vanished from a Lauderdale County, Alabama, prison on 29 April.
They were last seen as she was transporting him to a bogus evaluation.
It was Ms White’s last day at work before retirement. She had recently sold her home and told colleagues she planned to spend more time at the beach.
Lauderdale County Sheriff Rick Singleton said the couple’s vehicle crashed after a police chase in Evansville, Indiana, and the inmate surrendered.
Local media quoted Vanderburgh County Sheriff Dave Wedding as saying Ms White had been driving during the chase and had then shot herself.
Sheriff Singleton declined to comment on reports that she shot herself.
“I hope she survives it. You know, we don’t wish any ill will on Vicky in terms of her health, her well-being. But she has some answers to give us and hopefully we’ll have that opportunity to get those answers,” he said.
The US Marshals Service said the two had previously been last seen on Friday driving a copper-coloured Ford Edge with an Alabama registration plate.
On Monday, Sheriff Singleton described the 6ft 9in Casey White as “extremely dangerous” and advised law enforcement not to “take any chances” with him.
Meanwhile, Ms White had a spotless record as a prison guard.
“I would have trusted Vicky with my life. I really mean it,” Lauderdale County District Attorney Chris Connolly told reporters. “If we needed something from the jail, she was our go-to person, solid employee. That’s why it’s so shocking.”
Casey White was charged in September 2020 with murder over the stabbing of 58-year-old Connie Ridgeway. He was already serving 75 years for a series of violent crimes in 2015, including burglary, vehicle theft and a police chase.
He allegedly confessed to the murder, but later pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity, and was awaiting trial at the Lauderdale County Jail when he disappeared, authorities added.
He faces execution if convicted.