Inmate charged in 1976 murder of Wheaton woman

August 2, 2011

Darlene Stack of Wheaton was killed at a boarding house. Michael Whitney who also lived there at the time is charged with her murder. DuPage County State's Attorney Robert Berlin announced first-degree murder charges against Whitney Tuesday.

"Thirty five years is a long time and many things change over the course of that time, but the truth is never changed and the will of the people to do justice is never changed," said Berlin.

Some of Stack's relatives were in court and present at the state's attorney's press conference.

"It makes it very easy now to put some closure," said Mark Douglas, Darlene Stack's relative.

The cold case heated up when newly tested DNA from Stack's bed sheets allegedly matched Michael Whitney and Whitney's girlfriend at the time, who was his only alibi, changed her story.

"She was with the defendant when he left their downstairs bedroom to go upstairs. He was naked at the time. There were some muffled screams from upstairs in the house," Berlin said.

Also in court was Wayne Wallar. Whitney is currently serving time for murdering Wallar's father in 1982. Whitney was to be paroled next year for that murder.

"I have a good feeling 'cause this guy probably isn't going to get out. But I have a bad feeling for the family that has to go through this again," said Wallar.

The Wheaton home has changed hands several times since the murder in 1976. Stack, who was going to school to become a medical technician, had just moved into the boarding house. Neighbors wondered who killed her.

"I thank the Lord. Maybe justice will finally be done," said neighbor Priscilla Weese.

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