NEW YORK(CBS/AP) Guido Felix Brinkmann survived Hitler's death camps, but could not survive the brutal attack of a Bronx woman, who, police now say, bound, robbed, and murdered the 89-year-old in his Upper East Side Manhattan apartment.
Angela Murray, 30, was charged with murder and robbery. Police are still looking for her alleged male accomplice.
On Thursday, Brinkmann was found in his bed, hands tied, in a pool of his own blood. The medical examiner said he was asphyxiated.
Investigators said Brinkmann was in the habit of inviting younger women to his apartment for sex.
The building doorman told police that a man and a woman in their 20s came to Brinkmann's apartment about 11:15 p.m. the night before he was found dead. They were later seen by witnesses leaving through the basement garage, driving away in his car. Police located the car in the Bronx Friday evening.
Brinkmann's body was discovered after his friend Bo Dietl, a high profile former NYPD detective-turned-private-eye, called 911. Brinkmann had been working as a building manager in the Bronx and did not show up for work; someone there contacted Dietl.
The two met in 1971 when Brinkmann owned the nightclub Adam's Apple and have been friends for more than 30 years. Brinkmann was the godfather of Dietl's sons. Dietl said Friday he had been worried Brinkmann was a robbery target because he carried a lot of cash.
Dietl said a safe in the apartment hadn't been opened, and that he believes thieves were trying to get the combination from Brinkmann and failed.
"I'm still half in shock about it ... he's my friend, my best friend," Dietl said.
Dietl remembers Brinkmann telling stories of his childhood, growing up in Latvia and moving to Germany. His family was sent to concentration camps because his mother was Jewish.
At Auschwitz, he had been slated to die several times, but each time was spared. Dietl said Brinkmann thought it was because of his skills as an electrician.
Amazingly, Brinkmann found love in the death camp. He met his wife there. She died a few years ago.
"He was the most likable person in the world, he befriended everyone," Dietl said.
But Brinkmann also had some legal trouble. He was arrested in April on a menacing charge after pulling a gun on people in his office in some type of dispute, Dietl said. His license to carry a weapon was suspended, but thought he was going to get it back, according to Dietl. The charges were later dropped.
Brinkmann is survived by his son, who was flying to New York from Portland, Ore., Friday morning, Dietl said.