Lavish funeral plans proceed

CHICAGO -- The wife of a millionaire killed in an ambush as he stepped out of his shower has moved out of her posh suburban home and claims she is living under police protection.

Plans for a lavish funeral for her husband are still underway, even though he reportedly died heavily in debt.


Werner Hartmann, a German immigrant who made a fortune installing car stereos and selling audio cassettes, was killed by at least 10 bullets that traced a pattern from his face to his naval, police said.

Northbrook police say they have 'no leads, no suspect, nothing' in the week-old slaying.

Debra Hartmann, 28, said she moved out of the house with her 14-year-old step-daughter, because 'we didn't feel safe.' Police said no special protection is being given to the woman.

A funeral for Hartmann, 38, was planned for Friday, the couple's fourth wedding anniversary.

'He's going to be going in style,' Mrs. Hartmann said. 'We picked the most expensive plot at the cemetery, and we'll have limos and everything for the funeral.'

At the time of Hartmann's death, his first wife, Vasiliki Cruse, who is also a co-owner of his business, was living in the Northbrook home. Mrs. Hartmann said Ms. Cruse and the stepdaughter were living with her now.


Mrs. Hartmann denied reports the family had large debts and their Rolls-Royce had been repossessed.

She also said Hartmann told her last week that 'he wanted to talk to me about something extremely important' but he was killed later in the day so 'I never found out what that was.'

Police said records showed Hartmann had large debts. Mrs. Hartmann conceded the business owed money on merchandise.

She said the Rolls-Royce was being offered for sale but had not been repossessed.

It was reported Hartmann and his wife fought over her longstanding friendship with a man -- and once shot up her $50,000 Rolls-Royce as she pulled from the driveway.

'I know other men, and he knew other women,' she said. 'But it was never anything romantic. Despite anything people say, I know in my heart the strong feeling my husband had for me.'

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