362.1113 Velz, Roland/1: Telegram

The Consul General at Berlin (Messersmith) to the Secretary of State

Roland Velz, native born American, residing Germany for business, executed affidavit Consulate General October 9 that on 8th was subjected [Page 391]to entirely unprovoked attack Dusseldorf. Was walking sidewalk with wife when parade S.A. men passing along street. Spectators at least five deep on edge sidewalk watching parade but people moving both directions on wide sidewalk paying no attention just as Velz. Without provocation S.A. man twice hit Velz’ face causing mouth and nose to bleed. Reported incident nearest police officer and pointed out assailant but officer refused take action other than point out police lieutenant in immediate vicinity to whom Velz, with blood streaming from face, made a complaint. Police lieutenant refused take action but informed Velz assault must have been his own fault. Case being reported by Consulate General political police and to Reich and Prussian Ministries Interior and Embassy of the United States. Judging from failure German authorities to take appropriate action in numerous previous cases not likely that any action will be taken against assailant or against police who failed to do their duty. In spite of assurances action we have no information yet that policemen who witnessed attack on Bossard have been identified or punished although most vigorous representations have been made by the Embassy and Consulate General. Written report follows. Through best informed high official contacts know that police still powerless to act against S.A. men but recent incidents show that authorities take no action against police derelict in their duty. Although this is first serious incident of physical assault on American for some weeks, clear that Americans coming to Germany are not safe from unprovoked physical attacks.

Messersmith