BRZESC, Poland (Jun. 16)
Wolf Szcerbowski, 18-year-old Jewish butcher’s son, was under sentence of death today for the slaying of a Polish policeman that set off anti-Jewish riots in this city on May 13 in which about 50 Jews were wounded, three of them fatally.
The verdict, which came late last night the conclusion of a one-day trial in which anti-Semitic counsel for the civil prosecution tried to implicate the entire Jewish people in the crime, also included one-zloty (20 cents) damages for the family of Stefan Kedziora, the policeman.
Max Rosenthal and Ignaci Levin, defense counsel, announced that they were appealing the death sentence.
Judge and prosecutor rebuked attempts by Attorneys Kowalski and Niebudok to make the crime an issue against the Jews as a whole. The judge warned that speeches were to be confined to the guilt or innocence of the defendant.
The prosecutor praised the defense put up by Sczerbowski’s lawyers, and went on record against implicating all Jews in the crime. Kowalski attempted without success to trap witnesses into statements that the murder had been planned by several Jews months ago.
Young Szcerbowski himself testified:
“I can’t imagine how it happened. I just grabbed the knife without thinking and stabbed Kedziora. I hid three days in the cellar. My own mother informed the police of my hiding place.”
Disorders in which windows of several Jewish shops were broken occurred yesterday over a false report that Szcerbowski had received only a four-year sentence. The police restored order.