On 7 June 1948 in Warsaw, Judge Halina Wereńko, a member of the District Commission for the Investigation of German Crimes in Poland, interviewed the person named below as a witness. Having been advised of the criminal liability for making false declarations and of the significance of the oath, the judge swore the witness, after which the witness testified as follows:
|Name and surname||Władysław Ziemnicki|
|Names of parents||Władysław and Józefa|
|Date of birth||28 January 1915|
|Religious affiliation||Roman Catholic|
|Place of residence||Międzylesie near Warsaw, Poniatowskiego Street 8|
In addition to my deposition from 20 May 1946, let me explain the following: in September 1944 (I do not remember the exact date), Unterscharführer Toms was appointed commandant of the guards in the Stauferkaserne building to the left of the entrance onto Rakowiecka Street, in the part marked “c” on the drawing made by witness Grzelski. SS Rottenführer Edward Franckowiak, a Silesian Volksdeutsch from Siemianowice, was appointed his deputy. He was a man of average height (around 165 cm), slim, brown-haired, with an oblong face, dusky complexion, straight nose and dark, ominous eyes. I noticed no distinctive marks on him. He would address all prisoners as “Edek.” He spoke Polish in a Silesian dialect. Franckowiak was very short-tempered. He would beat up a prisoner for the slightest violation and then explain himself to him the next day. In the barracks, I did not hear anything about him murdering anybody or handing anybody over to the authorities for a serious violation. At that time, the Germans organized an official winter aid scheme in the barracks for people from bombed-out German cities – Organization für Deutschland. As part of this scheme, groups of workers, comprising male civilians from the neighboring houses who were held in the barracks, brought in items belonging to civilians from the houses in closest proximity to the barracks. These items were then put into chests and cupboards, sealed with nails, and sent to German cities. During the official act of looting, Franckowiak and other SS-men robbed flats, taking away valuable items, looking for gold in particular. I saw Franckowiak take items and bring them to the barracks. I saw other SS-men send packages with such items to Germany. I believe that Franckowiak also sent them. One night (I do not remember the exact date, but it was in September 1944), Franckowiak woke me up and said he could not sleep. Then he told me that in 1943, during the suppression of the Jewish uprising in the Warsaw Ghetto, he was storming a bunker defended by Jews. The Jews put out a white flag and then came out of the bunker. As corporal, Franckowiak separated the men from the women and children. He sent the men to the rear, leaving them to the authorities, and ordered that the women and children be executed on the spot. And then, from among the corpses, he heard a child crying. He said that this memory would not let him sleep.
Franckowiak’s attitude was stern; in the barracks, he did not have a reputation for cruelty.
At that the report was concluded and read out.