‘Pure evil’: Anamosa inmate killed nurse, correctional officer with hammer, authorities say


The Iowa Department of Corrections identified the victims killed Tuesday as Lorena Schulte and Robert McFarland.

ANAMOSA, Iowa — Iowa officials have released the identities of the nurse and correctional officer attacked and killed by an inmate at the Anamosa State Penitentiary Tuesday morning.


Registered nurse Lorena Schulte, 50, had worked at the facility since July 30, 2007. Correctional Officer Robert McFarland, 46, had worked at the facility since October 20, 2008

“I call this event a tragedy because that is truly at the heart of what took place yesterday— two wonderful people had their lives taken them while they’re simply trying to do their jobs here at Anamosa,” Iowa Department of Corrections Director Dr. Beth Skinner said. “I want to make it clear about what took place here yesterday— two public servants were taken from this world by an act that I can describe as pure evil.”

According to Special Agent Richard Rahn with the DCI, the Jones County Dispatch Center received a call from the facility around 10:18 a.m. Tuesday with a report of three staff being injured.

Once on scene, authorities found McFarland had received blunt-force trauma to the back of his head. They found Schulte in the facility with the same injury.

The Ely Fire Department wrote the following on Facebook:

It is with great sorrow and sadness that the Ely Volunteer Fire Department shares the passing of Lieutenant Robert McFarland. Robert’s friendship and dedication to the fire service and community will be greatly missed. Please keep Robert’s family and loved ones in your thoughts and prayers. 

Rest easy Brother. We’ll take it from here…

Another individual injured in the incident was McKinley Roby, who also suffered a blunt-force trauma injury to the back of his head. Roby, an inmate, is being treated at the University of Iowa for his injuries.

Roby attempted to help McFarland and Schulte during the attack and was injured while doing so, Rahn said.

“The investigation thus far has revealed this that the two individuals who are responsible for this heinous act: Thomas Woodard and Michael Dutcher,” Rahn said. “They were attempting to escape the facility. And, essentially, Mr. McFarland and Ms. Schulte interceded there, attempted to stop the escape and subsequently received the injuries that they did.”

Dutcher, 28, was initially committed to Anamosa for two counts of first-degree robbery, second-degree robbery and ongoing criminal conduct. He was sentenced to 50 years.

Dutcher started his sentence on May 14, 2015. His anticipated release date would have been April 18, 2057.

Woodard, 39, was also initially committed to Anamosa for first-degree robbery as well as first-degree burglary. He was sentenced to 25 years.

Woodward started his sentence on January 13, 2017. His anticipated release date would have been March 10, 2029.

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