Warsaw, 13 April 1948. Judge Halina Wereńko, a member of the District Commission for the Investigation of German Crimes in Poland, interviewed the person specified below as an unsworn witness. Having been advised of the criminal liability for making false declarations, the witness testified as follows:
|Name and surname||Józef Szymański|
|Date of birth||19 March 1890, Ryczyn, Płock county|
|Names of parents||Wojciech and Jadwiga n ée Pijanowska|
|Religious affiliation||Roman Catholic|
|Education||can read and write|
|Occupation||caretaker of the house at Dworkowa Street 3|
|State affiliation and nationality||Polish|
|Place of residence||Warsaw, Dworkowa Street 3, flat 7|
I have been employed as the caretaker of the house at Dworkowa Street 3 in Warsaw for 17 years. In autumn 1942 (I do not remember the exact date), the residents of our house and of the houses at aleja Na Skarpie 1, Dworkowa Street 5 and of Michalska Palace at Dworkowa Street 1 were evicted and the houses were taken over by German gendarmerie. The commander of the gendarmerie unit which took over the houses was Hauptmann Pech. He was a tall, slim man of around 50 years of age, who had dark eyes and dark hair, already going grey. He came from Germany. It was said that his son had been an airman and had died (I do not know when or where). During the first days of the Uprising, Pech lost an arm and was taken to Germany by plane. From the beginning, there was a Lieutenant Karol Lipscher in the unit. He had become a Lieutenant before the outbreak of the Uprising in 1944 and after Pech’s departure, he assumed command of the unit. He was a stocky man of average height, his hair was reddish. He came from Austria and spoke a little Polish. Lipscher remained in Dworkowa Street for the duration of the stay of gendarmerie unit and at the end of September he left with the unit for Piaseczno. There was also a Lieutenant Bydle in the unit. He was born in Germany. Budenstedt, a native German, was the unit’s non-commissioned supply officer (he had one star on the collar of his uniform). As regards the gendarmes, I have remembered Malicki, a Volksdeutsch from Warsaw. He was a short, dark-haired man and wore a pince-nez. The gendarmerie unit was around 100-strong. Soon after the unit took up residence in our house, 40 Jewish men and women were brought in and hired on site. They were craftsmen (shoemakers, tailors, carpenters). One summer Sunday (it was in the morning, but I do not remember the year or date), the group of Jews was loaded on a van and driven away. They were told they were going to pick up some coal, but they never returned to our house. The same gendarmerie unit was staying in our house during the Warsaw Uprising, up until the end of September 1944. Then, they transferred to Piaseczno, from where they fled the Polish and Russian armies in January 1945.
I do not know what happened to that unit later.
On 3 or 4 August 1944 (I do not remember the exact date), but already after Captain Pech’s departure for Germany, as I was in the courtyard of the house at Dworkowa Street 3, I saw that a group of civilians, including men, women and children, altogether some 150 people, was being taken out of the houses at the junction of Dworkowa Street and Puławska Street. The group was moving down Dworkowa Street. Among them, I recognized Wacław Przybysz (currently employed as a fireman in the Ministry of Supplies in Warsaw) with his wife and child. Neither then nor on any other occasion did I hear anything to indicate that shots had been fired at the Germans from the houses at the junction of Dworkowa Street and Puławska Street.
The group was being led by Malicki, the Volksdeutsch, who was armed with a light machine gun.
I did not notice any other gendarmes. As the group was approaching our house, Malicki went inside and soon left. I think he spoke to Lipscher, who was staying in the house. When Malicki came out of the house, he sent the group down the steps to Belwederska Street, while he himself stayed in Dworkowa Street, by the steps. I saw that when the majority of the group got down to Belwederska Street, Malicki opened fire from his light machine gun on the people walking. At one point, the gun jammed and another gendarme ran up to him, took the gun and fired a couple of shots, and a few moments later, Malicki was shooting again.
I did not see if the wounded were finished off. After a while, Malicki came to the house. Soon afterwards, I saw that a doctor from the first-aid team comprising a few paramedics came to our house, to see Lipscher, I believe. All of them wore white overalls and had the Red Cross badges and flag.
I do not know the name of the doctor or the paramedics. Lipscher, I believe, gave permission to take the wounded from the execution site, because after a few moments, the first-aid team with the doctor came out, went down the steps and took the wounded to the care facility for paralytics in Belwederska Street. The Germans did not fire at those who picked up the wounded.
In the winter of 1944, I came across Przybysz in Piaseczno and learned that from among those who had been fired at by the steps leading from Dworkowa Street to Belwederska Street, many had survived.
Przybysz is currently employed as a fireman in the Ministry of Supplies in Warsaw.
At this point the report was concluded and read out.