Defense hopes to exclude more statements made to police in 1972 Naperville murder case
An attorney for a Minnesota man charged in the 1972 killing of a Naperville teenager is seeking to suppress statements he made to authorities at a Minnesota police station.
Barry Lee Whelpley, 78, is charged with aggravated criminal sexual assault and first-degree murder in the death of Julie Ann Hanson. The Minnesota man was arrested two years ago after DNA evidence linked him to the case.
The 15-year-old Naperville girl disappeared on July 7, 1972, while riding her bicycle to her brother's baseball game. Her body was discovered a day later in a field near 87th Street and Modaff Road. The coroner said she had been stabbed 36 times.
In a recent defense motion, attorney Terry Ekl argues that statements Whelpley made to Naperville investigators at a Minnesota police station should be excluded because his statements were a continuation of a seven-hour interrogation at his home.
A hearing on the motion is scheduled for Aug. 10.
Will County Judge David Carlson last year ruled statements Whelpley made to police or his wife at his home were inadmissible.
"The defendant was interrogated for seven hours at his residence without being advised of his Miranda warnings in violation of the Fifth Amendment," Ekl wrote in his recent motion. "After he was placed under arrest and transported to the police station, the interrogation continued almost immediately."
In his motion, Ekl argues that even though Whelpley was read his Miranda rights at the police station, investigators continually referenced statements he made to police at the home. According to a video of the interrogation, police spent the first 15 minutes summarizing what Whelpley said at his home. Allowing the statements from the police station would circumvent Carlson's previous ruling, Ekl argued in his motion.
Prosecutors declined to comment on the motion after a status hearing Tuesday. They have until July 10 to respond to Ekl's motion.
Ekl, who was in court Tuesday with Whelpley to set a hearing date on the motion, would not detail what Whelpley said to police. However, he did say Whelpley did not confess to the killing.
"When it's all said and done, this case is DNA," Ekl said, noting Carlson also ruled statements made to police after Whelpley requested an attorney are inadmissible.
Police focused on Whelpley after a forensic genealogical company was able to find a match for a DNA sample collected from Julie Ann's body. The company found potential matches to Whelpley, who lived in Naperville at the time of the girl's disappearance and death, his father and a deceased brother.
Whelpley remains in jail on $10 million bail.