[Warning: Potentially Triggering Content]
A person enraged over a latest breakup opened fireplace outdoors a megachurch this week – killing his ex-girlfriend and her good friend earlier than turning the gun on himself.
In keeping with Folks, 22-year-old Eden Mariah Montang and 21-year-old Vivian Renee Flores have been speculated to be attending a Bible research service with The Salt Firm, the church’s faculty ministry, on Thursday night at Cornerstone Church. Nonetheless, issues took a tragic flip when Johnathan Lee Whitlatch arrived on the megachurch in Ames, Iowa, earlier than 7 p.m. and fatally shot the 2 faculty college students within the parking zone. After taking pictures each girls, the 33-year-old killed himself. A 3rd good friend was with them on the time however was not injured within the ambush.
Story County Sheriff Paul Fitzgerald informed reporters that the disturbing incident was a focused assault sparked by the latest finish of the connection between Whitlatch and Montag. He had additionally just lately been arrested for third-degree harassment and impersonating a public official in an incident “straight associated to the breakup.” Fitzgerald acknowledged, per KCCI-TV:
“This was a scenario that might have unfolded rather more tragically had this simply been a random act of violence. There have been over 80 college students within the auditorium at Bible research, and if he had discovered his approach contained in the church with that intent it might’ve been rather more tragic than what we now have at present.”
Court docket information obtained by the Des Moines Register alleged that on Might 1, a person repeatedly known as Therapeutic massage Heights, the place Montag labored as a licensed therapeutic massage therapist on the time, claiming to be a police officer investigating an inappropriate relationship between her and one other cop. He additionally allegedly informed the scholar that he had reported the scenario to the Ames Tribune.
The particular person gave a number of false names on the time. Nonetheless, the conversations have been recorded and his voice ended up matching Whitlatch. In keeping with the authorized paperwork, the courtroom set a $6,500 for Whitlatch, and a listening to had been scheduled for June 10.
Each of his victims had been college students at Iowa State College. The college president issued an announcement following their deaths, expressing:
“We’re heartbroken to study of the deaths of two Iowa State College college students who have been killed final night time outdoors of Cornerstone Church in Ames. Eden Montang was a senior within the Faculty of Human Sciences from Boone and Vivian Flores was a junior within the Faculty of Agriculture and Life Sciences from West Des Moines. We prolong our deepest condolences to their households and mates. Our hearts are additionally with the opposite college students who have been on the church on the time of the taking pictures. We all know many others in our group attend companies or are members at Cornerstone.”
Such a tragedy what occurred right here. Our hearts exit to Eden and Vivian’s family members throughout this tough time.
[Image via We Are Iowa Local 5 News/YouTube]