116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
After a few days of sunny weather it looks like rain will return this weekend. According to the National Weather Service, showers will be likely in the Cedar Rapids area before 11 a.m. and also Saturday night. In the gap between rain during the day it should still be mostly cloudy, with a high near 74 degrees. Sunday should follow a similar pattern with a chance for rain throughout the day. However, the sun may peak its way through the clouds at some point Sunday and the high temperature is predicted to be 79 degrees.
A man who fatally shot two women before killing himself in the parking lot of an Iowa church had been romantically involved with one of the women and faced a court hearing next week on a charge of harassing her, investigators said Friday.
Authorities said 33-year-old Johnathan Lee Whitlatch, of Boone, pulled up in a pickup truck outside Cornerstone Church on the outskirts of Ames just before 7 p.m. Thursday and began shooting at three women with a 9 mm handgun.
Eden Montang, 22, and Vivian Flores, 21, were killed in the attack, and Whitlatch then shot himself, Story County Sheriff Paul Fitzgerald said.
The two women were friends and students at Iowa State University and were walking together to the church for a weekly service that is popular with university and high school students.
The sheriff said Whitlatch and Montang had recently broken up, and investigators believe Whitlatch’s intent was to kill her.
Iowa Democrats are proposing sweeping changes to their caucuses, essentially turning the complicated system into a simple straw poll, in an attempt to preserve their status as one of the first states to express their choice for the next U.S. president.
The Iowa Democratic Party on Thursday afternoon formally submitted to the national party an application to be one of the early-voting states to the national party’s rules and bylaws committee.
The national party’s rules and bylaws committee is expected to meet later this month to review states’ applications.
The Iowa caucuses — both Democrat and Republican — have kicked off the country’s presidential nominating process every four years for the past four decades.
But in recent years, national Democrats have expressed concern with the caucus system, which requires in-person attendance, and with a lack of diversity in the state, which makes it, in critics’ eyes, unfit to serve as the influential first state in the process of picking a president.
The heat on Iowa Democrats intensified after the 2020 caucuses, when a computer program designed to tabulate caucus results failed on caucus night. As a result, official results weren’t reported for several weeks.
In contrast, the first in the nation status appears to be safe for Iowa Republicans, who already have a simplified voting system in place. It also helps that Republicans have had a lot of success in recent elections in Iowa, and the congressional delegation holds some sway with national Republicans.