Neighbors in Northeast Philadelphia are not just bothered but genuinely surprised by what allegedly motivated a man to kill his wife. NBC10's Lu Ann Cahn has the story.
A murder investigation into an elderly woman's killing, allegedly at the hands of her elderly husband just took a bizarre set of turns.
Sex could be the motive in the elderly killing that first appeared to be a home invasion in Northeast Philadelphia.
Louis Hartdegen, 75, admitted to police that he fabricated a story about a 26-year-old neighbor breaking into his Oxford Circle home early yesterday and killing his wife Judith, according to Philadelphia Police.
Hartdegen said money led to the killing. Multiple police sources with knowledge of the investigation tell NBC10, however, that Hartdegen didn't kill his 74-year-old wife over money but rather during an argument over sex.
The sources say the woman's body was found with baby oil and a bite mark on her chest. The sources also say that Cialis -- an erectile dysfunction medication -- and pornography were found nearby.
Philadelphia Police were called to the 6700 block of Castor Avenue in the Oxford Circle section of Northeast Philadelphia around 2:20 Monday morning for the report of a burglary, according to investigators.
They found Hartdegen, 75, bloodied with extensive wounds to his head and neck. Hartdegen told police his neighbor had broken into the second floor apartment and began to attack the couple including sexually assaulting Hartdegen's wife before suffocating her.
Louis Hartdegen was rushed to Aria Health - Torresdale Hospital in stable condition. Police took the man's 26-year-old neighbor into custody Monday morning.
Monday night however, investigators announced a twist in the case. According to Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey, Hartdegen confessed to killing his wife and making up the lie about his neighbor committing the crime.
“Rarely do you have a homicide like this take place,” Ramsey said.
On Tuesday morning, homicide Capt. James Clark said that Hartdegen admitted to striking his wife several times before suffocating her during a domestic argument.
Those who knew the couple are shocked.
"That guy was arthritic from head to toe," said Mark Ryan. "I just couldn't see him doing it."
"She was always with him, supporting him," said Randy Bertre. "He can't even walk."
This isn't the first time Hartdegen has been in trouble with the law. According to court records, he was found guilty of incest back in 1991. He was also found guilty of burglary back in 1971.