Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Berek Rothenberg - May 20, 1984

Trouble with the Jewish Police

And then this Sunday--so Krzepicki, with Tepperman, with other policemans--they run the--one grab a, a few hundred uh, fellows and to dig holes in the, the, in the C--in this, in this uh, camp C, C they dig holes. So, so, they, they were grabbing. So I was laying, uh, I worked all night Saturday night and Sunday. I was laying in, in bed. And he, he came over and...

[interruption in interview]

...they pulled off the--he--the, the policeman--they pulled off this blanket from, from me and they say, "You tried to hide it from us." I said, "I'm sleeping, I don't know what's going on." And they beat the heck out of me. My nose and my ears and my face and my eyes was--so one--he's in Israel--??? from my hometown and he couldn't stand it. He was standing behind the window and seeing how they beating me up. So he opened this--the door, he says, "Murderers," he said, "Why are you beating this boy up? If you had to work--do a job like he does, you would not touched him." And he said, "Who are you?" And he took off. So he tried to, to protect me, or to speak out. So when I came to work, the foreman come over he says, "What happened to you?" I said, "Nothing." "No, you got to tell, something happened to you." I said "Yes," I said, "This policeman beat me up for no reason." "Come on." Took me into this--to the head man uh, he was from, from the--to the supervisor or something, or he was in a Nazi uniform. And he told him--he says--this foreman says to him, "This policemans--they beat this poor fellow up and he's such a good worker, what he does." So he says, "You bring him over and let him do it his work." I said, "Now I'm in trouble." What I did--I couldn't hide my, my sores, my--and they went and they sent for this Tepperman. And I was sitting in the office--this foreman's office, and he come and they bring, and, and--they didn't have to bring him over, he, he just came himself. He got a order to come, he came. And he walks in and he sees me. And he gets colors in his face and all kind of things. And this officer comes out to him, he says, "You beat this fellow up?" "I don't remember." "You did it or not?" He said, "Yes." "Now you go do his work." And took him down to my department. And he looks at me, I said, "I'm sorry, I didn't mean it." I said, "I don't know." I, I was afraid. I was more afraid of him than of them. I said, "I don't know, I didn't say nothing, I didn't squeal or they saw it--what you did to me." "You do his work." You think he did it? He couldn't do it even for a second. He got away. He, he turned so around. He's not going to dirty his hands and his boots and his uniform with that.

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