116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
ANAMOSA — The two inmates accused of bludgeoning an Anamosa prison officer and a registered nurse will be tried separately in Jones County District Court.
Thomas Woodard, 39, will remain set for trial June 22 because he demanded a speedy trial.
Michael Dutcher, 28, will be tried at a later date to be determined by the court, according to a Friday status conference in Jones County District Court.
Both men have pleaded not guilty to charges of two counts of first-degree murder, second-degree kidnapping and attempted murder.
The two inmates are charged with killing correctional officer Robert McFarland, 46, of Ely, and nurse Lorena Schulte, 50, of Cedar Rapids, during what authorities said was a failed attempt to escape March 23 from the Anamosa State Penitentiary.
During the video hearing, defense attorneys for Woodard and Dutcher said they hadn’t received all or any of the discovery evidence from the prosecution and asked that the judge file an order.
Assistant Iowa Attorney General Scott Brown said he was waiting on the investigative file from the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation and would make copies of the video materials for both defendants. He didn’t want to send the evidence in “piecemeal.”
Sixth District Judge Fae Hoover encouraged the prosecution to send the defendants what it has and not wait until it has everything. Hoover said she would set up an in-person status hearing for June 3 or 4, as requested by the defense.
The attack started about 10 a.m. March 23 when Woodard and Dutcher went to the infirmary under the pretense of fixing something, Iowa DCI Special Agent in Charge Rick Rahn has previously said.
The men had access to hammers and a metal grinder because they had checked them out from the prison maintenance area. They were being supervised by McFarland.
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