Idaho inmate pleads guilty to escaping hospital after correctional officers are attacked

FILE - A police vehicle is parked outside Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center in Boise, Idaho, March 20, 2024. Skylar Meade, an Idaho inmate who escaped custody after an ambush at the hospital in March, pleaded guilty Wednesday, May 15, 2024, to escaping from prison and to being a persistent violator, but two additional felony enhancements related to injuries others received during the violent escape are still pending in court. (Sarah A. Miller/Idaho Statesman via AP, File)

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — An Idaho inmate who slipped custody from a hospital in March after a violent attack on corrections officers has pleaded guilty to escape, while still facing the possibility of two felony enhancements that could add to his sentence.

Skylar Meade entered the plea in 4th District Court on Wednesday. He could face up to life in prison when sentenced in July.

Violence erupted March 20 at a Boise hospital as Idaho Department of Correction officers were preparing to transport Meade back to prison after he was treated for injuries. Prosecutors say Nicholas Umphenour shot two corrections officers. A third officer was injured when a fellow police officer mistook him for the shooter and opened fire. All three officers survived.

Meade and Umphenour fled the scene, first driving to north-central Idaho before heading back to the southern half of the state, where they were arrested the following day.

Umphenour is charged with three counts of aggravated battery on law enforcement officers, using a firearm during a crime and aiding and abetting escape, all felonies. He has not yet entered a plea, but is scheduled for a hearing later this month.

Meade also faces felony enhancements because prosecutors say he conspired or aided Umphenour in inflicting injury on two of the officers. He has not yet entered a plea to those allegations. They will be addressed in a hearing set for June 20, according to court documents.

Meade’s defense attorney did not immediately respond to a voice message, and Umphenour’s public defender could not be reached Wednesday afternoon.