Homicide Hunter: Never Give Up is set to dive into the complicated and long-drawn case of Darlene Krashoc's murder. Darlene, a Fort Carson soldier, was only 20 years old when she went dancing with members of her unit at Shuffles, a popular local nightclub. Two Colorado Springs patrol officers found her naked and mutilated body behind a Korean Club.
Trigger Warning- This article contains graphic details of violence.
The hunt for her murderer began on that fateful day in 1987, and it took over three decades to finally find the perpetrator, a U.S. Army Veteran named Michael Whyte. The case took years of search and technological advancement to capture the killer, who had evaded authorities successfully for years, living a good and comfortable life in the country.
Read on for more details about Darlene Krashoc's murder and murderer.
What happened to Darlene Krashoc, and who did it?
20-year-old Darlene Krashoc was a promising young soldier who enlisted upon graduation in 1984. She also worked as a mechanic. According to her mother, she had decided to re-enlist and attend Army Airborne School days. However, her dreams did not come to fruition as her dead body was found the morning of St. Patrick's Day behind a Korean restaurant 6 miles from the base in Colorado Springs.
She was beaten, mutilated, and assaulted. According to sources, she had no clothes on and had visible signs of mutilation. Authorities later determined that she was attacked so violently that her liver and spleen suffered blunt force trauma. She was last seen leaving a nightclub with a man between midnight and 1 AM, shortly after her friends left.
Authorities conducted hundreds of interviews but found no leads. The case soon went cold. But authorities never gave up hunting for the brutal murderer. The case was reopened in 2001 and 2004, owing to developing technologies.
As technology progressed further, the case came under the spotlight again. Authorities soon developed a complete DNA profile with the available DNA sample found at the scene, including semen and saliva. Experts used this to narrow down the suspect pool. In 2017, almost two years after the authorities drew up a composite sketch using DNA profiling, they had a breakthrough. Using a pair of popular ancestry sites, experts narrowed down a set of people whose ancestry matched the DNA.
Tracing their genealogy, authorities reached a distant cousin named Whyte, who lived very close to the crime scene. His profile also matched the composite sketch. After this tremendous effort, Michael Whyte was arrested by the authorities. He was never a suspect, and his name never came up in the investigation, but modern scientific development led sources to the perpetrator.
Whyte was a signal operations manager at Fort Carsons at the time. He had spent 19 years in the Army before retiring as a sergeant first class in 1998. He had no criminal record. However, authorities allegedly confirmed that Whyte was the one behind the brutal assault and murder of Darlene Krashoc.
He was sentenced to life in 2019 for the murder of Darlene Krashoc. Homicide Hunter: Never Give Up will cover the case in detail when it airs on August 17, 2022, at 9.00 PM EST.