A New Berlin woman was the cold mastermind behind the brutal murder of a Brookfield businessman, brow-beating her boyfriend into killing John Aegerter to steal his radio communications wealth, that boyfriend told Brookfield police.
And boyfriend Tommy Douyette said Lynn Hajny had another partner in crime — a Wauwatosa police clerk who plotted for months with Hajny to murder , steal his identity and eventually split the millions they believed he was worth.
Hajny's husband Albert , who owned about 75 radio transmission towers, ran several companies and was president of Air Page Corp., 14150 W. Greenfield Ave.
Douyette said he was the one who the night of June 21, 2011, confessing in a two-day interview that was transcribed in a 99-page document filed in Waukesha County Circuit Court.
Douyette told police Hajny tied Aegerter's feet with cords and put duct tape and bags over his head, stealing keys and money off his dead body lying on the floor of his home garage in Brookfield.
Plans to kill a second person
Douyette said Hajny also had made plans to kill her husband, Al, so she could be with Douyette, with whom she had a 13-year affair.
The police clerk, Mark Finken, had known Hajny for years and wanted money to help care for Finken's daughter, Douyette told investigators.
Finken, 43, fatally shot himself July 23 — about a week after being suspended from the Wauwatosa Police Department amid an investigation that seized his work and home computers and searched his home. Finken left a suicide note saying he was not involved in Aegerter's murder.
According to Douyette, Finken did a lot of planning, including trying to access Aegerter's business finanical records and practicing how to write Aegerter's signature to pose as him after his death.
Forensics reviews of Finken's computers found copies of a check Aegerter wrote to Albert Hajny and a copy of Aegerter's signature, as well as living will documents, according to information submitted by prosecutors.
Police clerk not there when man murdered
But Douyette said Finken was not there the night Aegerter was murdered, or the next morning, when Hajny and Douyette frantically fled together after learning Aegerter's body had been found before they got a freezer and hydrogen peroxide to dispose of it.
Hajny, 49, has pleaded not guilty to a charge of party to the crime of first-degree intentional homicide. She plans to take her case to a jury trial Oct. 8.
Hajny's attorney, Michael Hart, said he could not comment before the trial about Douyette's statements to police, other than to say there were contradictions in what Douyette said right after his arrest and what he told police in the two-day interview six months later.
The criminal complaint alleged Douyette said Hajny had asked Douyette to go along with her and "hit and hurt" Aegerter when Hajny confronted Aegerter about money she said he owed her husband. Douyette said in the later police interview he had no such intentions and hit Aegerter only after Hajny yelled out that Aegerter had hit her in the garage.
Douyette, 43, is awaiting sentencing after pleading guilty in a plea deal to a reduced charge of first-degree reckless homicide. He faces a maximum possible 40-year prison term followed by 20 years on extended supervision in the community.
Under the plea deal, Douyette must testify in Hajny's case if she goes to trial. He won't be sentenced until after he testifies.
According to the police interview transcript that prosecutors filed in court pre-trial motions:
Douyette said Hajny took Douyette to meet Finken three times between March and June, with Hajny and Finken trying to persuade Douyette to join their plan to kill and dispose of Aegerter's body and live off his wealth. They wanted Douyette to do the actual killing, or "be the muscle," as a police interrogator put it.
'You're not going to get away with this'
Douyette said each time he balked at the plans. "It's not, you know, it's not something people get away with," Douyette told police he told Hajny and Finken. "You're not going to get away with this. They go, 'Oh, it's the perfect plan, it's the perfect plan.'"
He said Hajny and Finken had eyed the Fourth of July for the murder, saying it was a good time to kill Aegerter because no one would miss his holiday absence from work.
Another plan was to wait until Aegerter moved to Las Vegas, as he was contemplating, and kill him in Las Vegas. Either way, the two talked about having Finken take over Aegerter's identity and send emails to associates, gradually firing via email his few employees and selling his assets. Hajny said her husband Al, as one of Aegerter's employees and a friend, eventually would want to see Aegerter and challenge the emails so Albert Hajny would need to be killed.
Using victim's body as 'bone meal' for roses
Douyette said at the three meetings Finken and Hajny used a dry erase board and notebook to plan what they needed, hashing ideas on how to dispose of Aegerter's body.
Among the ideas was using saws to cut up his body and dissolving it in buckets or in a sewer septic system with Rid-X. Another idea: to have Lynn Hajny, who enjoyed gardening, smash Aegerter's bones with a hammer, plant roses and sprinkle the bone dust as a "bone meal... and spread it on the roses."
But Douyette claimed there was no plan to murder Aegerter on the night he died. He said he was having drinks with Hajny at Kip's bar that night, when she said she wanted to confront Aegerter about money she said he owed her husband. The Hajnys were behind in paying their mortgage, having already staved off foreclosure, and needed money.
Douyette said he didn't want to go, but Hajny told him it would be quick and they'd be gone in about 10 minutes. Cell phone records show Hajny talked to Aegerter that night and she made four calls to Finken, with Finken calling Hajny once.
Douyette said when they got to Aegerter's house, Aegerter came out of his garage, Hajny approached him and Douyette trailed behind, admiring Aegerter's collector cars when "the next thing I know, she's screaming, 'Tom, he hit me, he hurt me, kick his ass!'
"He hit me! If you love me, you'll kill him."
"I said, 'What's up?' and he kind of came, not at me necessarily, but you know, arms kind of flailing at me. I'm like 'What's up?' She's like, 'He hit me, hit him!' And I popped him. And she stood over my shoulder, screaming at me, 'If you love me, you'll kick his ass. If you love me, you'll kill him.'"
Douyette told police he and Aegerter tripped at the same time, falling to the ground, with Douyette on top of Aegerter, and Hajny continued to scream at him to kill Aegerter, challenging him not to be a coward. Douyette said he punched Aegerter as many as nine times about the face.
He said Hajny said she kicked Aegerter in the genitals and she swore at Douyette to "find something, choke him." Douyette said there was an electrical cord in reach and he pulled it up it to choke Aegerter. Douyette said he closed his eyes and heard duct tape ripping, opening his eyes to see Hajny taping Aegerter's head. "I just kind of let him go and stood up," Douyette said.
Hajny checked for pulse, found none and apologized to Douyette. "She's like, 'Everything will be fine, I have an idea,'" Douyette told police.
Woman takes control after murder
Douyette told police Hajny then took control, telling him to look for a freezer, leaving and returning up to 20 minutes later with a roll of clear plastic sheeting to wrap around Aegerter's body. She gave Douyette rags to wipe his bloody hands, took Aegerter's money from his wallet and his keys to the communications towers he owned and gave Douyette Aegerter's house key. They went to a bar in West Allis for drinks and then Hajny then dropped Douyette off at his Milwaukee home before she returned to her New Berlin house.
Douyette described a series of inept moves — how he and Hajny left fingerprints on sodas in Aegerter's refrigerator, couldn't cover one of Aegerter's legs in the plastic sheet and panicked the next morning when they learned police had found Aegerter's body before they were able to return with a freezer to hide the body and possibly store the locked freezer temporarily at Finken's house, as Douyette said Finken discussed.
The two fled to Hajny's cousin's house in Slinger, where police — acting on the cousin's tip before they got there — stormed inside and arrested them, court documents say. Investigators found a bow saw and anvil pruners in Hajny's vehicle, Aegerter's key on Douyette's key ring and a bloody shirt of Douyette.
Police found Aegerter at 9:55 a.m. after a co-worker reported he had failed to show up to work. Officers found him face down in the garage, his ankles and neck bound with electrical cords, his face duct-taped and several plastic grocery bags over his head. The medical examiner said he died of blunt trauma to the head and chest and strangulation.
It was the city's first homicide investigation since 2005, when Terry Ratzmann opened fire during a Living Church of God worship service at the , killing seven before turning the gun on himself. Prior to that there was a murder-suicide in 2003, police said.
Neither Hajny nor Douyette have a previous criminal record.