Victim identified, more details released, in alleged Cedar Rapids murder

A neighborhood in Southeast Cedar Rapids is in shock, after police say a 22-year-old woman was murdered.
Published: Apr. 3, 2022 at 2:11 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - More information has been released about an alleged murder on Saturday night in Cedar Rapids.

Arthur James Flowers, 62, was arrested and charged with first-degree murder.

Arthur James Flowers, 62, of Cedar Rapids.
Arthur James Flowers, 62, of Cedar Rapids.(Courtesy: Linn County Jail)

According to a criminal complaint filed in Linn County District Court, law enforcement officers were sent to a report via 911 by Flowers of a woman who had suffered a heroin overdose at 1029 10th Avenue SE. Officers made contact with Flowers at the address after they said he initially tried to leave the scene. He then took them to an upstairs bathroom where a deceased woman, identified as Emily Elizabeth Leonard, lay on the floor.

Officers said that Leonard had “obvious head injuries” and noted splattered blood in the bathroom. A further investigation of the home found another area with more blood spatter and partially-coagulated blood on the floor, which prosecutors believe was likely where Leonard was killed.

A wooden board was located in the bathroom with blood on it, which prosecutors alleged was the potential murder weapon. The filing also alleged that Flowers “appeared to have blood on his hands.”

Flowers later admitted to police that he had been alone with the victim from Friday evening through the time of the 911 call, according to the court filing. He said that he knew Leonard for many years.

Prosecutors alleged that Flowers’ recounting of events did not match the evidence available at the home, and that he also shared “a lot of irrelevant information.”

Flowers is being held at the Linn County Jail on a $1.5 million bond.

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