Arrest made in 1972 Illinois murder, sexual assault of 15-year-old girl

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NAPERVILLE, Ill. (WGN) — Naperville police and Will County officials said an arrest was made in the 1972 stabbing death and sexual assault of a 15-year-old girl.

Barry Lee Whelpley, 76, was arrested and charged in the murder of Julie Ann Hanson. He faces three first-degree murder charges.

Julie’s body was found in a cornfield near 87th Street and Modaff Road on July 8, 1972. Her death was ruled a homicide.

Julie was riding her bike to her brother’s baseball game when she disappeared on July 7, 1972. Her older sister reported her missing the next day. The parents were away at the time.

Her bike was found in a ditch 100 feet away from where officials located her body. She had been stabbed 36 times and was sexually assaulted.

Whelpley, who was 27 at the time of the murder, is a former resident of Naperville. He lived within a mile of Julie’s home.

Whelpley was taken into custody in Minnesota where he is awaiting extradition to Illinois. He was charged by the Will County State’s Attorney and bond was set at $10 million.

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