Warsaw, 5 February 1946. Acting Investigating Judge Alicja Germasz, delegated to the Commission for the Investigation of German Crimes, heard 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 witness was sworn and testified as follows:
|Name and surname||Maria Przetakiewicz|
|Date of birth||12 November 1919|
|Parents’ names||Henryk, Jadwiga|
|Occupation||office worker of the municipal board|
|Education||student of the Warsaw School of Economics|
|Place of residence||Warsaw, Nowogrodzka Street 23, flat 5|
|Religious affiliation||Roman Catholic|
During the German occupation, I lived with my parents and my brother Jerzy at 6 Sierpnia Street 11 in Warsaw. My brother, who was 20 years old, studied at the Zaorski medical school, and I worked in the municipal board in Warsaw and gave private lessons.
On 6 May 1944, we both left our house at 5.30 p.m. We parted at the gate of our house: my brother went to study with his friend (I don’t remember her surname) at Wawelska Street, on the corner with aleja Niepodległości, and I went to Chopina Street to one of my students. During the lesson, my mother called me and asked whether I had reached the house of my student undisturbed. This is how I realized that there was some disturbance at aleja 6 Sierpnia. I finished the lesson at 6.30 p.m., and, on my way home, I heard multiple shots and saw many Gestapo men in Zbawiciela Square running towards 6 Sierpnia Street and shooting in all directions. I sought shelter in the gate of the house at Marszałkowska Street 43. About an hour later the shooting had ceased, and I returned home. My brother wasn’t home yet. My mother told me that during my absence she had heard multiple shots, but she hadn’t seen anything as our flat is located in the annex. At about 8.30 p.m., our neighbor, Mrs. Radzikowska (I don’t know her name, but I know that she currently resides at aleja 3 Maja 14, flat 67) stormed into our flat and told us that her husband was lying dead on the corner of Piłsudskiego and Polna Streets. Radzikowska told us that her husband had left for their allotment at aleja Piłsudskiego shortly before the shooting started. When the shooting was over, she went in that direction and saw her husband lying dead at the corner of Piłsudskiego and Polna Streets. She asked me to go and see if he was still there. I went in that direction, and, already from afar, I saw a few German cars, many Gestapo men, and a German patrol with rozpylacze [sub-machine guns] moving down Mokotowska Street. I walked back to the house. The next morning I went there again. At the corner of Piłsudskiego and Polna Streets (in the direction of aleja Niepodległości), I saw the deceased Antoni Radzikowski, who was lying on the pavement with a part of his face and his ear covered in blood. A few steps further (in the direction of aleja Niepodległości), I saw five or six men, all with their heads bloodied, lying in various positions in the furrows of the allotments. At that time Polish policemen arrived. I asked them if they knew whether more people had been executed. They replied that 12 people had been executed on the corner of Wawelska Street and aleja Niepodległości on the previous day. I went there as I worried about my brother who hadn’t come back home. On both street corners at the junction of aleja Niepodległości and Wawelska Street (from the side of 6 Sierpnia Street) there stood single blue policemen. One of them (the one on the left side) asked me what I was looking for. I told him that I was worried about my brother. Then he informed me that some bandits had been killed there for committing a robbery. Nevertheless, I wanted to see them. Six deceased people, covered with paper, lay supine next to one another in Wawelska Street (just around the corner with aleja Niepodległości). Six more, also covered and in the same position, lay on the other side of the street. The policeman lifted the paper covering the first six people, and then I recognized my brother among them. He was lying in his clothes and his mouth was covered in blood. There was a bullet hole under his eye and leaked brain on the back of his head; the second bullet must have hit him in the heart, as both the clothes and the coat had blood stains at that spot. My brother lay with hands along the body, but some of the other five men had their arms raised, as if they were threatening someone. All had
Indeed, we found my brother’s body in the morgue. Having filed with the police a declaration that my brother had gone to the allotments and had been accidentally killed there in unknown circumstances, we obtained permission to bury him. The friends of my brother (I don’t know their surnames) who saw his body in the morgue recognized one of their mutual friends among the bodies brought with my brother from aleja Niepodległości (the witness undertakes to submit the surname of the deceased).
I learned the following details from my brother’s friend whom he visited that fateful evening: when my brother came to her flat, they began to study, and some time later they heard heavy shooting drawing nearer from the direction of Pole Mokotowskie. At one point, German vehicles pulled up in front of the house. The Gestapo men entered the courtyard and began to make the rounds of particular flats, checking identity papers of all present. Then they ordered everyone to go out to the courtyard. Next they chose six young people, all of whom were not registered as residents of the house, and took them to the street. The rest were allowed to go back to their flats. My brother’s friend told me that neither families nor friends received any information concerning the fate of the men who had been taken away that day.
The report was read out.