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Chris Scott
Chief Inspector
Username: Chris

Post Number: 658
Registered: 4-2003
Posted on Tuesday, October 28, 2003 - 12:39 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IPPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Found this account of the Walsh murder which may be of interest:

Williamsport Daily Gazette and Bulletin
22 April 1895

For Atrocity it Has Not Been Surpassed Since "Old Shakespeare" Was Found Butchered Three Years Ago - A Man Arrested On Suspicion

By United Press

New York, April 21.
A murder which has not been surpassed for atrocity since "Old Shakespeare" was found butchered in the East River Hotel three years ago, was committed in Thompson street or its immediate vicinity early this morning. The victim of the crime was a woman known as Alice Walsh, a frequenter of the region around Thompson and Sullivan streets, who was found in a pool of blood in the hallway of No 143 Thompson street shortly before 6 o'clock. Mrs. Carmella Ruggiero, the mother of Frank Ruggiero, who is janitor of the five story brick tenement in which the body of the murdered woman was found, left her room on the third floor at a few minutes after 5 o'clock to go to mass. The stairs were still dark, but in the faint light which came through the open street door she saw the form of a person sitting on the second step of the staircase which leads from the entrance hall. It was too dark for Mrs. Ruggiero to distinguish whether the person was a man or woman, and as she was used to seeing drunken men and women sleeping off their debauches on the stairs, paid little attention at first.
The body was in such a position as to completely block Mrs. Ruggiero's path. It was seated on the second step, the shoulders rested against the steps above and the left hand grasped the railing of the banisters. Mrs. Ruggiero had by this time grown accustomed to the dim light and saw the body was that of a woman. She took the outstretched hand to place it by the woman's side so as to make room for herself to pass by. The hand was so cold that Mrs. Ruggiero became alarmed and rushed to her room and aroused her son, Frank. He hurriedly went down to the hall to investigate. He struck a match and ordered the woman to get up and out of the house. When she failed to respond, he shook her by the shoulder. The only response was a faint moan. Then he struck another match and by its light saw a pool of blood on the floor and a trail of blood leading twoard the street door.
Ruggiero did not stop to investigate further. A policeman was notified. He summoned an ambulance and when it arrived the surgeon in charge decided from abrief examination that the woman was intoxicated and that she was suffering from a female ailment. She was taken to Bellevue Hospital, where Dr. Finch made a thorough examination and discovered that the woman had been stabbed in the pelvic region, and that there were many bruises on her body.
The woman remained in an unconscious condition until her death, which occurred at 11:15 a.m. The body was taken to the morgue, where an autopsy was performed. The result of the doctor's investigation showed that a most brutal murder of the type made famous by Jack the Ripper had been committed. The dead woman was evidently a woman of the town and was about 25 years old. The body was almost covered with bruises as though she had been subjected to the most brutal treatment before the final assault which caused her death. No part of the body was free from the contusions, many of which appeared to have been caused by kicks. They were especially numerous on the legs and thighs. The weapon with which the wound was made, the doctors said, was either a stiletto or a long knife sharpened to a razor keenness. It might have been a razor, but this was considered rather unlikely, owing to the force which would be required to force the razor into the woman's body to make such a wound as the one from which she died. The weapon had penetrated to a distance of five inches.
Before the autopsy was performed, Carrie Williams, a prisoner, who had been assigned to Bellevue, asked to be allowed to see the body, which she identified as that of a woman she had known as Alice Walsh. Carrie said she knew of no one who was jealous of Alice Walsh to such an extent as to lead to murder.
The tenants of the house where Alice was found say they heard nothing in the halls during the night that sounded like a struggle or a fight. One or two of them, however, claim to have heard from their neighbors that at about 4:30 o'clock, they were awakened by a sound resembling a woman's faint, gasping scream. The voice was muffled as though the woman was being choked, or was too weak from fright and pain to cry out loudly. The tenants are mostly Italians.
The police department immediately went to work on the case and this afternoon Philip Mewley, who gave his address as No. 154 Thompson street, was arrested on suspicion of being concerned in the murder.

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