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3 Idaho corrections officers shot as suspect breaks inmate out of hospital

One CO was critically wounded, a second sustained serious injuries and a third was accidentally shot by a responding police officer mistaking the CO for the shooter

Skylar Meade

This photo provided by Boise Police Dept., shows Skylar Meade. Police in Idaho say officers were involved in a shooting at Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center in Boise, Idaho, and are searching for two suspects, including Meade, who is a prison inmate who escaped. (Boise Police Dept. via AP)

(Boise Police Dept. via AP)

Associated Press

BOISE, Idaho — Three correctional officers were shot — two by a suspect and one by responding police — during a brazen overnight attack to break a prison inmate out of an Idaho hospital, authorities said Wednesday.

Police throughout the region were looking for the suspected shooter as well as the escaped inmate, Skylar Meade, who was sentenced to 20 years in prison in 2017 for shooting at a sheriff’s sergeant during a high-speed chase. Meade and the suspect fled in a gray four-door sedan, possibly a Honda Civic, with Idaho plates.

The attack occurred at 2:15 a.m. as Idaho Department of Corrections officers prepared to bring Meade back to prison from Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center in Boise, where they had taken him for undisclosed treatment.

One officer shot by the suspect was in critical but stable condition, police said, while the second wounded officer had serious but non-life-threatening injuries. The third injured corrections officer also sustained non-life-threatening injuries when a responding officer — incorrectly believing the shooter was still in the emergency room and seeing an armed person near the entrance — opened fire.

“This brazen, violent, and apparently coordinated attack on Idaho Department of Corrections personnel, to facilitate an escape of a dangerous inmate, was carried out right in front of the Emergency Department, where people come for medical help, often in the direst circumstances,” Boise Police Chief Ron Winegar said in a written statement.

A Saint Alphonsus spokesperson said the shooting happened in the ambulance bay by its emergency department.

“All patients and staff are safe, the medical center campus is safe and secure, and has resumed normal operations. The Emergency Department itself is currently under temporary lockdown while the Boise Police Department completes the investigation,” Leticia Ramirez said Wednesday morning in a statement.

She said as an added precaution, “we have increased security on campus, all entrances to the hospital will be closed” and monitored by hospital security until further notice.

Ramirez declined to comment when asked about Meade, deferring to the police department.