Monday, March 29, 2021

Flags to be flown at half-staff to honor slain prison staff

ANAMOSA, Iowa (AP) — Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds has ordered flags to be lowered to half-staff on Monday to remember the prison nurse and correctional officer killed in a failed escape attempt.

She said Saturday in a news release that that the state “grieves the loss” of 50-year-old nurse Lorena Schulte, of Cedar Rapids, and 46-year-old Officer Robert McFarland, of Ely. They were killed Tuesday at the Anamosa State Penitentiary in eastern Iowa. The release said Monday is when both will be laid to rest.

Inmates Michael Dutcher, 28, and Thomas Woodard, 39, are charged with two counts of first-degree murder, attempted murder and second-degree kidnapping.

A prison official said that an inmate also was assaulted while trying to help, and a third employees was grabbed but managed to get free.

“My prayers and deepest condolences are with all of their loved ones and colleagues as they cope with this senseless tragedy,” Reynolds said in the release. “We will exhaust every available resource to deliver justice to those who committed this act and bring a sense of closure and peace to the victims’ families.”

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