In Warsaw, on 26 February 1946, Alicja Sermosz, acting District Investigative Judge of the 2nd region of the District Court in Warsaw, delegated to the Commission for the Investigation of German Crimes, interviewed the below-mentioned as a witness. Having been advised of the criminal liability for making false declarations, the witness testified as follows:
|Name and surname||Wacława Szlacheta|
|Date and place of birth||23 September 1900 in Warsaw|
|Parents’ first names||Teresa and Jakub|
|Place of residence||Village of Czerwonka, Chodaków commune, Sochaczew district|
|Religious affiliation||Roman Catholic|
Since 1935, I had been living with my family in the building at Wolska Street 129. The first days after the outbreak of the Uprising passed calmly in Warsaw; there was no combative action in our district at the time, and there were no insurgents in our building either.
German military police burst into our building on the night of 4 to 5 August completely out of the blue, with revolvers in their hands – they dispersed to the different flats and searched them. Three military policemen entered our flat, ordered us to put our hands up, and searched all of our cupboards, and checked our documents. In the morning I found out from neighbors that they had searched everywhere, and if they found jewelry and watches, they took it; for example, they removed my neighbor Natalia Aksamit’s watch from her hand, and took it.
On 5 August at about 10.00 a.m., a few dozen military police, armed with rozpylacze [submachine guns] and grenades, burst into our courtyard. They ordered everybody out of the building. All of its residents – there were then about 500 of us (men, women, and children) – went out into the courtyard, from where the military police ordered us to walk along Wolska Street. I went out with my husband Michał, two sons – 23-year-old Józef and 21-year-old Marian – and two daughters – 18-year-old Lucyna and 15-year-old Alina. The Germans ordered us all to cross to the other side of Wolska Street, and they arranged us there beneath the fence of Sowiński park, putting the group of women and small children closer to the gate, and the men – which included boys from 14 years old – further along in the direction of Elekcyjna Street.
On the road directly in front of us, they put up two heavy machine guns and they let off a burst of fire at us from both of them simultaneously. I fell to the ground, although I hadn’t been injured. Around me lay the bodies of killed and injured women, my legs were pinned down by some bodies. I laid like that till sunset. The whole time I could see and hear how the military police were walking among the bodies, checking who was alive, and killing them off with single shots.
Right after the volley from the machine guns I called my younger daughter, asking whether she was alive, and she answered that she was, but I couldn’t hear my other daughter’s voice. Then I saw how a military policeman kicked the woman lying next to me, to check whether she was alive. I also saw how a military policeman walked up to the cart where the crying babies of my neighbor Mrs. Jakubczyk were lying, and shot them. The whole time I could hear the moaning and screaming of the injured among those lying there.
At about 8.00 the military police said: “Those alive, stand up and go”. Then, from the whole group, five women including myself, and five children, got up. They were Leokadia Thorek, Alina Jakubczyk (I don’t have their addresses), Danuta Korchel, and I don’t know the surname of the fourth woman. All of the children were children of neighbors from my building. I looked after a girl, the daughter of my neighbor Mrs. Fedorowska, who had been shot three times by the military police. I didn’t see any of the men then.
We were marched first of all to the Orthodox church, then to the Church of St. Lawrence. Lots of other people from Wola had been brought there, and the whole church was overflowing. The next day Bishop Niemira said mass and gave holy communion – then the military police burst into the church, they extinguished the candles on the altar, and began shouting at the church’s priests. That evening, on 6 August, we were all driven on foot to Pruszków.
I would like to mention that to this very day I have had no news about either my husband or children. Neither have I heard about any of the former residents of building no. 129 on Wolska Street. In addition, when I got up after the execution at Wolska Street I saw the following of my neighbors lying murdered: Stanik, Tomaszewska, Szczebakow, Leszczyńska.
[Appendix:] orientational sketch (drawing).
The report was read out.
On account of the inspection of the grounds adjacent to Sowiński Park carried out on 28 May 1948, it has been determined that the situational sketch attached to the report of Wacława Szlacheta’s testimony of 26 February 1946, does not reflect how it really was.
Due to the above, the judge decided not to attach the report of the testimony of Wacława Szlacheta of 26 February 1946 to the Sowiński Park case files, and to interview the witness again.