What has happened in Romanówka, Poland during the night between 17th and 18th August 2015?
This is going to be a rather long story. I tried to cover every piece of news, info from missing people database and so on. Some info was difficult to find, but I think I managed to give you the most complexed view on this case possible. I guess it's important since there are no English sources on subject so non-Polish speaking people can't find more info on their own. I also wanted to describe the area briefly to give the story a bit of its own climate and help you guys to imagine all of those incidents. I put the information together in the chronology in which they appeared in the media, because after a year there is more of them, and I did not want to destroy the excitement of discovering of new facts for any of you ;) I’m not a native speaker, please let me know about any errors, I’ll fix them. If you really like mysteries and don't mind reading a lot, be my guest. I. The area
- calm, rural area, family well liked in the neighborhood
- 60 years old woman with mobility problems is missing
- she disappeared from her room upstairs leaving only a bloody stain on the mattress
- no signs of forced entry
- the area is extremely well-serached with a lot of help from the family and local people, no success
- police dogs find no trace outside the home
- family seems to be innocent
Romanówka in Sandomierz County. Sandomierz
is famous for its beauty and historical monuments. The whole area
consists of small hills, forests, apple orchards and charming villages and towns. Tourists come here to enjoy the history, sights, visit the famous gorges
Most of the nearby villages have something to be proud of: ruins of a medieval tower, historic railway station, forest reserve, and so on. Neighboring Grabow is a birthplace of the most famous Polish knight – Zawisza the Black (Zawisza Czarny)
But there is nothing special to see in Romanówka, so the guests are rare. It’s far from main road. Village consists mainly of typical, not so pretty houses they used to build during communism. People here are mostly farmers, have known each other for generations. Nothing interesting has happened here for years. (You can visit Romanówka using Google Maps
and street view.)
Nothing, apart from a two mysterious disappearances of women in their 60s(in 2006 and 2015). Both simply disappeared, leaving little or no trace behind. Thorough searches failed to find these women. The case has left police and residents confused. Police said that the two missing probably are not linked: circumstances were quite different, 9 years has passed between those cases. But the citizens are scared.
The first case, from 2006, didn’t get as much of media coverage as the second one. It was quickly forgotten, among other similar cases, only to be mentioned again when the disappearance from 2015 happened.
This story will mainly focus on the later incident as well. II. Who is/was Mieczysława Pawlica? Photo of Mieczysława
She was 60 year old female, living with her family: her husband, son, son’s wife and granddaughter. She also had second child – a daughter. She used to work at commune office. After giving birth to her children she decided to stay at home and work on family’s farm. It was a normal family, no criminal background. They had an opinion of a very hard working people. She had serious problems with her spine
and underwent several operations. She was able to walk but she would usually use crutches
. She obviously couldn’t run or make any quick movements. Measurements: height about 175 cm(between 5,7 and 5,8 feet), weight about 60-65 kg (135-145lbs)1 III. The disappearance
August 17 was just an ordinary day. Mieczyslawa went shopping with her husband. When she returned she pulled a piece of meat from the freezer for the next day and she made dinner. They all gathered and ate together. Around 9PM she went to sleep upstairs (Yes, it seems that Mieczysława and her husband weren't sleeping together). Not long before 11 PM Mieczysława's daughter in law saw her standing on balcony (which was connected to Mieczysława's bedroom) smoking a cigarette. This was last time (that we know of) anyone saw her.
The next morning Mieczysława husband went to her room to call her for breakfast. But it was not in the room, the bed was neatly done. He decided to look for her around the house. He thought he had gone to the house to feed the chickens, but the son told him that it is not there. After a moment, look around the house, she went back to her room. In place and intact bag lay lay (ID inside), wallet with money, documents on the bed - an open book, a woman was reading bedtime and glasses. He decided that it will raise the quilt - and froze in horror - the quilt, sheet and the mattress photo1 photo 2
were stained with blood. There were no other traces of blood anywhere in the house. The family began intensive searches in and around the house They noticed one change. Well. It was 56 meters (about 184 feet)deep and was unused. It was boarded up and overgrown with weeds. It seemed that two boards have been removed during the night. Family, almost certain that Mieczysława felt there, tried to call her out.Unsuccessfully. They called the police IV. The search
Police car arrived from the nearby village. Extensive search began soon and local police officers were joined by troops from neighboring towns - Sandomierz and Kielce - and the whole county. They were helped by the firefighters, local authorities (sołtys- someone like a mayor of a village- seemed very moved), and local people. It is estimated that about 300 people took place in the serach.
They had specialized equipment - a helicopter with thermographic camera and a drone
. Well-trained dogs
were used (probably the best dogs in Poland). They lost any trace of Mieczysława exactly at the entrance to the property, at the gate. The well
was searched by specialists - it was all dried out, but nothing was found except some tree branches and bag with trash, unrelated to the case.
The house, the farm and the surrounding countryside were searched for three days and nights. They checked at least 800 hectares (86 111 283.3 square feet ) surrounding the village. Then, in the second stage of exploration, they have been equipped with GPS. The area was divided into sectors and each sector had to be checked again. They searched through the fields, wastelands, nearby forest, cemeteries, under tombstones, and all wells that were unsecured with heavy concrete slabs. They of course contacted hospitals, nursing homes etc. Not a single trace of Mieczysława.
The area was flooded with posters about Mieczysława’ disappearance. People had called the police several times but none of the calls brought any significant information. The family even contacted a psychic, without results. V. A year has passed. What do we know now?
On 16th September 2016, Polish channel TVP3 included material about Mieczysława Pawlica in their show Ktokolwiek widział, ktokolwiek wie?2
(Whoever has seen, whoever knows) It’s a show about missing people. It revealed many previously undisclosed information and gave me an opportunity to look closely at the family and home and I’ll include my remarks here (oh, and I also made some screenshots3
Husband refused to talk discuss with reporters. He said that he "has had enough".
The amount of blood was exactly 1.5 liters (0.39 US gallons) some newspapers write that 0.5 (0.13 US gallons).
Not enough to bleed to death. Blood was dried out at the moment of the discovery.
Some incoherences with previous versions (I noticed them, there were not addressed by the journalists): 1. It seems that the police, not the husband discovered blood stains (newspapers quote her husband as he says he did). 2. Son says that blood stains were not only on the bed, but some tiny, almost unnoticeable bits were on the floor.
Since the incident family was closely watched by the police.
Example: When the son was leaving to work on the field watched him if he doesn‘t do any unnecessary digging.
Mieczysława’ s daughter, who seems much more well-spoken and educated than her brother, spoke about her mother in the past tense. "My mom was such a kind person" and so on. It may not mean anything, it’s possible that questions were posed this way, but I think it's worth mentioning.
The daughter said that the family did not hear any cars at night but in the case files there is a testimony of a witness (neighbor) who had heard the sound of a car engine
starting at night. The family was examined polygraph twice, the police didn’t disclose the results, but the villagers say they went positively.
Investigation was started with the family as suspects. Surprisingly, they were suspected of inciting or assisting Mieczysława to commit suicide.
Why? Well, police clearly know more than we do. But the family was cleared of the allegations in December 2015
Version about suicide suits Mieczysława’s psychological profile, says police spokeswoman. The police still seem to believe in suicide, but the psycholigist, who talked journalists, in spite of confirming, that suicide would suit her character, believe that suiciders are never trying to hide their bodies, they want to be found. He also said, that knowing her psychological profile, she probably wouldn’t take any sudden actions. Psychosis was excluded. Two kitchen knives
were found outside the farm with traces of blood at them. There is no doubt, that this was Mieczysława’s blood. In the house they also found a razor blade, on which there were traces of a fingerprint that were impossible to identify (too small fragments). VI.Disappearance from 2006
Jolanta Kulińska She disappeared in 2006. She was 59 years old. Jolanta lived alone. She worked as a babysitter. On the day of the disappearance she didn’t appear at work and her employer couldn’t contact her. Police was informed. They were searching for Jolanta almost as thoroughly as for Mieczysława, but the search remained unsuccessful. Neighbors and friends were helping. – She was a cheerful, friendly person and she selflessly helped many people - said one of the participants in research. The same ye ar, in May, the body of 34 year old missing man, lost in January was found. He felt into the river and drowned. Probably Jolanta Kulińska shared his fate. Perhaps the fog prevented her from seeing river, and she fell.
So, do you think it was a suicide, murder or maybe Mieczysława left the family willingly? Do you think those two cases are connected? Was the well just a coincidence or a red herring?
Besides that, I used many resources, all were in Polish. The most helpful were: Missing people database (helped me to find more info about case from 2006. Articles about 2015 case would only mention that some woman disappeared back in 2006 so I had to serach by the area and time of disappearance: link Polish tabloid “Fakt”- photos of the room and matress Local newspaper: Info about Mieczysława Pawlica’s case. Info about Internet forum about missing people gave me a hint about the new informations in the case: link
- info about weight and height – Polish police’s official website (Polish only)
- link to the show, Polish only
- Screenshots: http://imgur.com/a/iEG7i