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Reminder: Helping Inmates Escape Is Against the Law

By Jordan Walker, J.D. | Last updated on

Finding love isn't easy. Especially when the object of your affection is serving time. According to recent headlines, there may be a willingness to overlook a person's faults (including criminal record) for a love story that most likely won't end in "happily ever after."

Forget emotionally unavailable. Dating websites should include a checkbox for "physically unavailable due to incarceration" to fully disclose that your fairy tale might be contingent on a jailbreak that will likely result in your own criminal charges.

The Bonnie and Clyde Phenomenon

For the last few weeks, news outlets have extensively covered the Alabama corrections officer who helped her inmate boyfriend escape from the detention center where she worked. Sadly, on May 9, their love story ended in tragedy.

Vicky White was working as the assistant corrections director at the Lauderdale County Detention Center when she helped break out Casey White (the two are not related), a murder suspect serving time for other previous crimes. The couple evaded authorities for 11 days before their time together came to an end following a police chase and car crash. Vicky White died from a self-inflicted gunshot, and Casey White was arrested.

On the heels of this tale of love and loss, news broke in neighboring Louisiana about Victoria Tune, the 21-year-old security officer who helped three inmates escape from the Ware Youth Juvenile Detention Center where she worked. The three youths were incarcerated for violent felony convictions. Tune took the juveniles to a hotel in Houston, where they were apprehended.

Details are still emerging about why Tune helped the juveniles escape and whether she was romantically involved with any of them. According to Twitter, Tune may have helped the juveniles escape for her boyfriend.

Permitting and Facilitating Escape

If Vicky White had survived, she would be facing the charge of permitting and facilitating escape in the first degree.

In Alabama, to establish permitting and facilitating escape, a prosecutor would have to prove that Vicky White is a corrections facility employee who intentionally or recklessly aided or attempted to aid in the escape from a corrections facility of a person arrested for, charged with, or convicted of a felony

Authorities continue to uncover evidence of Vicky White's extensive preparations for the escape.

Sadly, she ended her own life like a modern-day Juliet. If tried, it's likely she would have been convicted and sentenced to at least one year of prison. Casey White declined to be her Romeo and surrendered.

Accessory to Simple Escape

Prosecutors charged Tune with three counts of accessory to simple escape. In Louisiana, simple escape occurs when a person confined in a detention center leaves but does not endanger anyone else. To prove Tune acted as an accessory, prosecutors must establish she:

  • Harbored or aided the juveniles while knowing or reasonably believing that they previously committed felonies
  • Intended to help the juveniles avoid and/or escape their punishment (i.e., their incarceration at the detention facility)

A Texas judge denied bail for Tune, and she was extradited back to Louisiana to face charges.

Why Do Good Girls Like Bad Guys?

Family and friends of Vicky White and Tune expressed disbelief upon learning of their actions. Vicky White's boss, Sheriff Rick Singleton, said that "this is not the Vicky White we know." Tune's mother revealed in an interview on YouTube that "this is not something she would normally do."

So why did they do it? One theory could be they suffer from a psychological condition known as "hybristophilia," used to describe a person sexually attracted to someone because they commit crimes.

Unfortunately for Tune and any other Bonnie out there looking for a Clyde, hybristophilia is unlikely a solid defense strategy when you're charged with helping violent criminals escape from jail.

If you're still looking for love, play it safe and keep swiping on Tinder. And if your soulmate happens to be serving time, hold off on the escape plans because there can always be love after lockup.

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