Ex-Canyon County deputies sentenced to 3 days in jail for soliciting inmate in revenge plot
Ruth Brown, Idaho Statesman
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CALDWELL (Idaho Statesman) — The two ex-Canyon County jail deputies accused of plotting an attack on an inmate in act of revenge pleaded guilty Tuesday through an Alford plea and were ordered to serve three days in jail.
Third Judicial District Magistrate Judge John Meienhofer accepted the guilty pleas of Kade McConnell, 27, of Caldwell, and Corey Weathermon, 46, of Nampa. In an Alford plea, the defendants do not admit guilt, but acknowledge there is enough evidence for a jury to potentially convict them.
Canyon County turned the case over the Ada County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, and deputy prosecutor Shelley Akamatsu filed the charges.
Weathermon and McConnell pleaded guilty to misdemeanor attempted aiding and abetting or solicitation to commit battery, charges that were amended down from felony solicitation to commit battery.
Akamatsu asked the judge to impose three months of jail time for each man, the maximum sentence allowed. But defense attorneys argued that the evidence was unreliable and the deputies did not commit crimes worthy of jail time.
The men were charged after authorities claimed the deputies attempted to retaliate against then-inmate Sergio Gonzalez. Gonzalez attempted to escape the Canyon County jail on Oct. 9, 2017. He assaulted a jail deputy in the process. On Oct. 17, 2017, the Canyon County Sheriff’s Office received word that McConnell and Weathermon plotted to retaliate.
After lengthy arguments from the prosecutor and the defense, Meienhofer sentenced both men to one year of unsupervised probation and 90 days of jail. All but three days of the time were suspended. The judge credited Weathermon for the one day he has already served and the two days McConnell already served.
RELATED: Ex-Canyon County deputies sentenced to 3 days in jail for soliciting inmate in revenge plot
The men must also serve 40 hours of community service.
They will not serve the jail time in Canyon or Ada counties, due to safety concerns, but they will serve it in a county jail within the 3rd Judicial District.
Akamatsu explained in court that the charges were amended to misdemeanors only because the plot never came to volition and Gonzalez was never actually injured. But she argued that the deputies arranged “a violent hit on a person for revenge,” and their weapon of choice was multiple gang members in the maximum security area of the jail.
She went on to explain that after Gonzalez assaulted one deputy, there was a briefing at the jail and the Canyon County Sheriff’s Office stressed to all deputies that they should not retaliate. McConnell and Weathermon had received training on the importance of not retaliating.
Investigators claimed McConnell passed information to other inmates in the Canyon County jail, showing that Gonzalez was in custody for several child sex crimes. Weathermon reportedly told authorities that McConnell was going to ask gang members in the jail what would happen if they knew Gonzalez was in custody for a child sex crime, according to reports.
The Idaho Statesman chose not to release the name of the inmate who was solicited because he was not charged in the case.
Akamatsu said the deputies had four days to cool off before they came back to the jail and gave the inmate information about Gonzalez’s history.
In addition, Akamatsu said the men opened the county to liability, and that’s one reason why they allowed them to plead guilty through Alford pleas.
This story was originally published in the Idaho Statesman. It is used here with permission.