Emanuel Holzhauer

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Emanuel Holzhauer (born January 12, 1977 in East Berlin ; † July 2, 1977 ) was an infant who died during an escape from the GDR organized by escape helpers .


Emanuel's parents - the later painter Frank Rödel and his partner - had decided to leave the GDR with the help of an escape agent. On July 2, 1977, they met the escape helper at around 2 p.m. at the Handel Monument in Halle (Saale) . They had previously been given sleeping pills by a middleman to calm Emanuel. After this had been administered to him, they drove to Bernburg , where they got into the trunk of the car. When Emanuel started screaming, he was given another dose of sleeping pills. At the “Magdeburger Börde” motorway service station, the vehicle, which was ready for scrap, was found by the drug-addicted escape helper Ingolf Sch. accepted. The engine failed as we drove on. Due to the unkempt appearance of Ingolf Sch. It was initially difficult to find a vehicle that would tow the escape vehicle to the Helmstedt-Marienborn border crossing . After they were towed away, they arrived there around 5:30 p.m. Ingolf Sch. prompted to open the trunk, as the vehicle hung very low over the rear axle. He refused, so the border guards broke the lock. Emanuel Holzhauer, weakened by the heat and sleeping pills, had meanwhile suffocated.


Emanuel's parents were sentenced in the GDR to five years imprisonment by the City Court of Berlin for establishing contacts against the state , attempting to cross the border illegally and for negligent homicide. The escape helper Ingolf Sch. was sentenced to eight years in prison.

A case of negligent homicide against the head of the escape aid organization in a court in West Berlin ended in an acquittal.

Emanuel's parents came to Germany in 1980 through ransom .

The mayor of Arolsen , who brokered the escape assistance, was arrested in 1984 on a transit trip through the GDR and sentenced to six years in prison. However, he was released in 1985.


In the series The Public Prosecutor Has the Word , the episode "Risk" was produced in 1979, which was based on what happened. Directed by Helmut Krätzig . However, the parents end up in the Federal Republic undetected with the dead child. However, the episode could only be broadcast after the fall of the Wall.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ GDR: slogan Morgenratte . In: Der Spiegel . No. 1 , 1985 ( online - 31 December 1984 ).
  2. https://www.hna.de/lokales/fritzlar-homberg/homberg-efze-ort305309/wollten-ddr-ernst-hubert-michaelis-sprach-ueber-seine-erlebnisse-gefaengnis-4984862.html