Warsaw, 15 July 1946, Halina Wereńko, acting investigating judge, interviewed the person named below as an unsworn witness. Having been advised of the criminal liability for making false declarations, the witness testified as follows:
|Name and surname||Halina Józefa Piotrowska née Parneska|
|Names of parents||Stanisław and Stanisława née Rusin|
|Place of residence||Bristol Hotel, room 333|
|Occupation||official in the Department of Real Estate Administration|
|Religious affiliation||Roman Catholic|
During the Warsaw Uprising, I lived at Bagatela Street 10 and until the expulsion of the Polish population by the Germans on 5 August 1944. The gate of our house was closed when the uprising started, but the next day, I think, Vlasovtsy blew it up with grenades. From that time on they would wander around the house, taking residents’ jewellery. They took two watches from me. They ordered us to leave the doors to our flats open. Apart from the Vlasovtsy, an officer of the SS came to our house to assure us that there was no danger to the residents. In reality, panic reigned in our house.
After 2 August, the residents whose windows overlooked the park and the former Main Inspectorate of the Armed Forces [GISZ] witnessed a mass execution of Polish civilians taking place in the park.
And thus, on 3 August, my sister Stefania Porulska, now in Germany, saw the Germans (I don’t know which formation) execute a group of women and children, around 60 people, in the place which I can indicate on the drawing shown to me as located between Bagatela Street and the letters K and D (a drawing constituting an attachment to the report from 18 October 1945 was presented to the witness). Residents from our house said that it was the female workers of City Tramways who were being executed. They had purportedly been apprehended with weapons in their hands. Those women, as my sister told me, were naked, they were lying in the yard, and – the moment my sister looked – they were being finished off by the Germans.
Residents from our house said that a “new group of Poles” was then led in to be executed. I heard gunshots and, after the volleys, pistol shots, as if someone were finishing off the victims, several times a day. On 3 August, I looked through the window of the bathroom in a flat on the third floor giving onto the park. It was around 3 p.m. I saw a heap of corpses in clothes piled up to a man’s height, some few meters from the wall, marked with the letter D on the drawing. The heap was the shape of a 5 x 7 meter rectangle. A German was standing next to it, I didn’t note the formation. There were clothed corpses of men on the heap, arranged on wooden logs. I backed away and didn’t look through that window again.
I have to add that on 2 August in the place already described, also through the window, I saw a heap of corpses of men dressed in German uniforms. I didn’t see the moment the corpses were burned, neither in the first nor in the second case. However, starting 2 August, I and all the residents of the house could smell acrid smoke coming from the park. People said that the Germans were burning corpses.
On 5 August, Vlasovtsy came to our house, taking the residents, with the exception of those who remained in hiding, like Kazimierz Cyganiak. I went out in a group of 15 people, including four men. We were led to the Gestapo at aleja Szucha 25.
I have to say that after leading us out of the house at around 10:00 p.m., the Vlasovtsy, who didn’t let us take any possessions, saying that we wouldn’t need them, initially took us to the park entrance. A German standing there told them: “Too late, take them to the Gestapo HQ.” I think I only avoided execution because it was late.
At the Gestapo HQ, the men were separated from our group and none of them has returned; I have no information about them. I and the other women were released on 6 August at 1:00 p.m. and we were told to go to the insurgents and tell them that unless they stop fighting by evening, all our men would be killed.
The report was read out.