Two dreadful murders were committed yesterday morning in or near the East-end. In one case a woman was found in a yard in Berner-street, Commercial-road, with her head nearly severed from her body. In the other case, a woman was found in Mitre-square, Aldgate, within the City jurisdiction, with her throat cut from ear to ear, and the body mutilated in a way that reproduced the worst features of the murder of Annie Chapman. Both the victims were women of low life. The body found in Berner-street has been identified as that of Elizabeth Stride. Late last night a man was arrested on suspicion at a lodging-house in the Borough.
If it were worth while to form any new theory of the East-end murders-as assuredly it is not-a new one would be wanted for the fresh horrors of yesterday morning. All theories seem beside the question in what must for the present be the almost distracted state of the public mind. There is nothing to say but that between one and two on Sunday morning two more horrible butcheries were added to the swelling list of the East-end crimes. The particulars of the past tragedies of this series would serve almost exactly for the new ones. The victims were two night wanderers, and one of them is known to have been of a certain class. Both were killed in precisely the same way as MARY ANNE NICHOLLS and ANNIE CHAPMAN, and one was mutilated like the last named. If there were a printed form for the description of such atrocities, it would only require a few entries of names and dates to make one account serve for all. Each of those butchered on Sunday morning might have been twin sister to CHAPMAN or NICHOLLS. The only way in which the murderer-if, as seems likely, these crimes are to be attributed to one hand-seems now to differ from himself is that he grows bolder by impunity. One victim for one night was his former rule. He now, with unerring precision, cuts off two within an hour. No more time was required than might have enabled him to pass from Berner-street, Commercial-road, the scene of the first murder, to Mitre-square, the scene of the second, and to complete the indispensable preliminaries of each deed of horror. These included the "picking up" of the women, and the luring them to a quiet spot which, for a few brief minutes, might serve as his temporary slaughter-house. At about one, a man driving into a yard in Berner-street, nearly ran over the body of a woman with her head almost severed from her body. At about two, a policeman passing through Mitre-square, where he is said to have passed but a few minutes before without seeing anything to excite suspicion, nearly fell over the body of another woman. In the brief interval between his first and second round, this woman had been murdered, exactly as ANNIE CHAPMAN was murdered, mutilated in the same way, and beside that gashed fearfully about the face, as though in a desperate struggle to prevent her from raising an alarm.
No more is known, and, as things seem to be going now, perhaps no more ever will be known. In the accounts which we publish to-day there is indeed some mention of a man said to have been seen in the company of one of the deceased women, and the description of him tallies in some degree with that of the mysterious companion of CHAPMAN. The latter was described as dark, over forty, not tall, of shabby genteel appearance, and dressed in a deerstalker hat and a dark coat. The man said to have been seen on Sunday morning was dark, aged about twenty-eight, and about five feet eight inches in height. He was of respectable appearance, and he wore a black diagonal coat and a hard felt hat. If we are to regard him as the murderer, his proceedings of Sunday morning seem to confound every possible speculation as to the manner of the crimes. To reach Mitre-square from Berner-street he must have hurried, dripping with blood, through streets still not entirely deserted, in spite of the hour. He must have been literally drenched with blood, after the completion of the second crime, yet he passed on unchallenged and unmolested, until he reached his lair. To add to these risks of detection he had to accost the second woman, and to win her confidence while he was still fresh from the butchery of the first. Never was there a greater mystery of crime. Yet, in this state, he was observed by no one, and especially by no member of that Force which is supposed to have eyes for a sleeping world. It is impossible to avoid the depressing conviction that the Police are about to fail once more, as they have failed with CHAPMAN, as they have failed with NICHOLLS, as they have failed with TABRAM, as they have failed with SMITH, as they are failing with the unknown victim whose limbs apparently are being scattered broadcast over the metropolis, from Pimlico to Newington.
The Police have done nothing, they have thought of nothing, and in their detective capacity they have shown themselves distinctly inferior to the bloodhounds which a few years ago, in the provinces, tracked the mysterious murderer of a little girl to his doom. The trail must run true and clear from Berner-street to Mitre-square, and beyond, for those who have the true instinct of the detective calling. None of the accepted apologies for the shortcomings of the force will cover their repeated failure in these extraordinary cases. The inadequacy of their numbers, though it is absolute in regard to the Metropolitan district taken as a whole, is but relative in regard to the limited area which is the scene of these crimes. A very slight reinforcement would serve to bring it to almost any strength that might be desired at the point of contact. The worse murder, moreover, the one which, with its ghastly sequel, must have taken the more time, occurs in that municipal district where many hundreds of men patrol the one square mile by night, to the average of two men for each of the 688 square miles of "Metropolitan" area around it. As we showed some time since, on the authority of the annual Report of the Chief Commissioner, the Metropolitan Force is ludicrously small. It has no grip of London. Its expansion has not kept pace with the expansion of the capital. It undertakes to patrol a district inhabited by over five and a quarter millions of people with an available force, allowing for deductions for stationary duty, of less than 8,000 men, and with but sixty per cent. of these on duty between ten at night and six in the morning. In the quarter of these crimes, apparently, whatever changes there may have been in the frequency, there has been no change in the manner of the patrol. There has been no sudden doubling on the beat, to baffle the calculations of the murderer. The policeman tramps slowly by, as he tramped before, and to those who have an interest in the calculation his returning tread may be timed with the same certainty as the movements of a planetary body. The entire management of this business, on the part of the representatives of law and order, exhibits what, under the circumstances, may justly be called an appalling lack of resource. There has been no sign of an especial cunning of device to meet the terrible emergencies of the case. There has been no hearty co-operation with the Press which, on a hundred occasions, has saved the Detective Department from the worst consequences of its own mistakes. There must be something incurably faulty in the organization and management of the Force, and, to all appearance, the gallant soldier who is at the head of it will never be able to tell us what it is. The public are fast coming to the belief that it is its military organization, and the absence of local interest and control, which makes our Metropolitan Police so inefficient in the very first of their duties-that of preventing violence and crime. The most agonizing of the East-end mysteries is the mystery of the utter paralysis of energy and intelligence on the part of the Police.
The Queen went out yesterday morning, attended by the Hon. Evelyn Moore, and in the afternoon her Majesty drove, accompanied by Princess Alice of Hesse, and attended by Lady Ampthill.
Madame Albani Gye had the honour of singing before the Queen and the Royal Family yesterday afternoon.
Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Albany and Princess Frederica were present.
Captain and the Hon. Mrs. Gye and Mdlle. la Jeunesse accompanied Madame Albani Gye.
Prince Henry of Battenberg, attended by Colonel Clerk, joined Prince Albert Victor of Wales at Glen Muick in a drive which Mr. Mackenzie had for black game.
SHOCKING MUTILATION OF A BODY.
Again London has been shocked, as all England will be shocked to-day, by another of those awful tragedies that have succeeded each other like the decrees of Fate-absolutely resistless, and enveloped in mystery at present absolutely impenetrable. Indeed, on this occasion two victims appear to have fallen before the merciless wretch who, there is at least strong presumptive evidence, has been alone concerned in the previous outrages. It may be well to state at once, however, that the police have no evidence of any kind actually establishing it as a fact that the two murders, discovered in the dead of the night between Saturday and Sunday, were committed by the same hand. It is just within the bounds of possibility that the two deeds may have been done by different persons, and that their happening within an hour in point of time, and within a distance of about a mile of each other, may be mere coincidences. But from the fact of the two cases, as well as from what has gone before, it will be perceived that the presumption is almost overwhelming in favour of the supposition that the two are connected, and that these and the previous murders are the work of the same inhuman creature.
The facts that have thus far been established are, as in the previous cases, in one sense meagre in the extreme. All that is really known is that two women have been barbarously murdered. The first of the two murders in point of time took place in Berner-street, a narrow, badly-lighted, but tolerably respectable street, turning out of the Commercial-road, a short distance down on the right hand side going from Aldgate. It is a street mainly consisting of small houses, but which has lately been brightened and embellished by one of the fine new buildings of the London School Board. Just opposite this is an "International and Educational Club," domiciled in a private house, standing at the corner of a gateway leading into a yard in which are small manufacturing premises and four small houses occupied by Jewish families. The yard gates are usually closed at night, a wicket affording admission to the lodgers and others residing in the houses. Friday or Saturday, however, brought round the close of the Jewish holiday season, and down in this part of London, where the people are largely composed of foreign Jews, some departure from regular habits was more or less general. The International and Educational Club was on Saturday evening winding up the holidays by a lecture on "Judaism and Socialism." A discussion followed, which carried on proceedings to about half-past twelve, and then followed a sing-song and a general jollification, accompanied, as the neighbours say, by a noise that would effectually have prevented any cries for help by those around. The hilarious mirth, however, was brought to a sudden and a dreadful stop. The steward of the club, who lives in one of the small houses in the yard, and had been out with some sort of a market cart, returned home just before one. He turned into the gateway, when he observed some object lying in his way under the wall of the club, and without getting down first prodded it with his whip. Unable to see clearly what it was, he struck a match and found it was a woman. He thought at first she was drunk, and went into the club. Some of the members went out with him and struck another light, and were horrified to find the woman's head nearly severed from her body and blood streaming down the gutter. The police were summoned, and amid the intense excitement of the few who were out and about at this unhallowed hour, the poor creature was borne to the St. George's dead-house.
That is really all that was known of the matter up till a late hour yesterday, when the body of the murdered woman was identified as that of a woman who had been living in a common lodging-house in Flower and Dean-street, and had been in the habit of frequenting this neighbourhood, where it appears she was familiarly known as Long Lizzie. It subsequently became known that her name was Elisabeth Stride. She has a sister living somewhere in Holborn, and her husband, from whom she has been separated some years, is said to be living at Bath. Anything beyond this the police superintendent of the H division, at a late hour that evening, said they had been unable to discover. As to the circumstances under which the murder was committed, or the motive for it, they are entirely conjectural, and not the faintest clue to the murderer has been discovered. The body when found was quite warm. In one hand was clutched a box of sweets, and at her breast were pinned two dahlias; she was respectably dressed for her class, and appears to be about 35 years of age, about 5ft. 5in. in height, and of dark complexion. The theory of the police is, and it is generally endorsed by those who have inquired into the matter on the spot, that precisely the same thing was attempted as in the case of the Hanbury-street murder, and that but for interruption the same ghastly mutilation would have been perpetrated. In some way, however, the fiendish assailant was disturbed, as it is assumed the same individual was disturbed in Buck's-row. It is supposed that finding he had not time to complete what he had intended without running the risk of capture, he left his victim very possibly, as it would seem, with little or none of her blood upon him. He may simply have seized her by the pink scarf round her neck, pulled her head hard, and given one horrible gash across the throat from behind, severing the windpipe, and thus at once putting it out of the power of his victim to cry for help, though, as we have seen, even though she had cried out, it is quite possible that no one could have heard it. All this, however, is mere speculation. Medical men were busy yesterday in minutely examining the body, and this morning at eleven o'clock Mr. Wynne E. Baxter will open an inquest.
It is announced by the police that in all probability the wretch was disturbed in his work, and made off in the direction of the City with the ghoulish thirst for blood still blazing within him; that he beguiled another hapless victim into a dark secluded spot, and then again fell to his butchery. It is certain at least that within a time just about sufficient to cover the distance in the leisurely manner necessary for the inveiglement of another victim, another victim was found, this time not only with the throat cut but with the face slashed and the bowels frightfully ripped, apparently by two desperate strokes of a strong stout blade. There had been apparently one frightful stab in the breast and a cut downwards, and there had been another gash from below upwards. There seems, in the opinion of the police, reason to believe that in this case the throat was cut as the woman lay upon the ground, the flow of the blood from each side of the neck seeming to indicate that she had died without movement, after the cut across the neck, though the part of the face here so slashed-the nose being nearly cut off and a wound having been received under one eye-is thought to show that the unfortunate woman had some premonition of her assailant's purpose, and, made a struggle for it. Struggles, however, were in vain, and so must have been any shriek for help, for the murder had again selected his spot with a cunning and astuteness that are in themselves among the most bewildering features of these mysterious crimes. If the East of London had been searched for a spot in which to do such a deed, it would have been difficult to find one better adapted. Between Mitre-street and Duke-street, Aldgate, there is an exceedingly dull, badly-lighted square, having however, three ways out of it. There is an open way into Mitre-street, a long narrow passage leading into Duke-street, and a third leading out into St. James's-street. By either of these therefore the assassin could have made his exit had he been again disturbed. The spot, though close to Aldgate main thoroughfare and lying between two streets busy enough at times, would any morning between one and two of course be quiet enough. Duke-street has long been known as the Jews' fruit market, but the property all round has long been undergoing change, and warehouses have taken the place of residences or small shops. This particular square is as dull and lonely a spot as can be found anywhere in London, and it was up in a dark corner of this gloomy retreat that at about a quarter to two a constable of the City Police who should have patrolled the spot, and, as he affirms, did so not more than twenty minutes previously, found the murdered woman. The face was gashed, her hair matted in the blood that flooded the pavement, her clothes were thrown up over the body, and the body itself mutilated as we have described. This was the dreadful sight that the constable flashed his lantern upon, and once more it is distressing to have to write that the flood of light revealed pretty nearly everything that is positively known upon the subject. Whether the monster this time finished the business he set about, or whether again he was disturbed and fled before he had completed his butchery, can only be conjectured. He has left no trace, nobody appears to have caught even momentary sight of him, and whether he has this time committed the same mutilation of the unhappy woman can be known only when the results of the post-mortem examination have been made public. So far, however, as the rough examination of the police have enabled them to judge, this was not attempted. It is a simple case of butchery, inhuman beyond the power of words to express, and absolutely purposeless. Several surgeons were yesterday engaged in the post-mortem examination, but of course nothing has been allowed to transpire as to the conclusion arrived at. It will be observed that this time the City Police have had devolved upon them the principal share in the responsibility for the discovery of the criminal, the crime having been committed within their precincts.
As to the reception of this twofold outrage in the East-end, it cannot but strike anyone moving about as remarkable. Successive editions of the Sunday papers were getting a marvelous sale yesterday, and the contents were being devoured with the utmost eagerness; but that was almost the only evidence of excitement. It really seems as though these horrors have lost their power to startle the public mind, and as though something like the apathy of despair has begun to settle down upon the population. The police yesterday afternoon took possession of Mitre-square and kept out the people, small crowds of whom gathered at the entrances. There was also a crowd of perhaps a couple of hundred persons outside the gateway in Berner-street during the day, and at ten o'clock last night there were perhaps 150 assembled in the roadway, looking on at the site of this tragedy, but betraying little or no excitement. As to the streets throughout the East-end, it is not surprising that so far from presenting anything approaching a panic they were in a singularly quiet, deserted condition, and until this frightful mystery shall have been cleared up by the capture of the mysterious assassin they will certainly continue so after dark.
Shortly before two o'clock yesterday morning it was discovered that a woman had been horribly murdered and mutilated, this being in Mitre-square, Aldgate, within the City boundaries, but on the confines of the now notorious district. It appears that Police-constable Watkins (No. 881), of the City Police, was going round his beat when, turning his lantern upon the darkest corner of Mitre-square, he saw the body of a woman, apparently lifeless, in a pool of blood. He at once blew his whistle, and several persons being attracted to the spot, he dispatched messengers for medical and police aid. Inspector Collard, who was in command at the time at Bishopsgate Police-station, but a short distance off, quickly arrived, followed a few moments after by Mr. G.W. Sequeira, surgeon, of 34, Jewry-street, and Dr. Gordon Brown, the divisional police doctor of Finsbury-circus. The scene then disclosed was a most horrible one. The woman, who was apparently about 40 years of age, was lying on her back, quite dead, although the body was still warm. Her head was inclined to the left side, her left leg being extended, whilst the right was bent. Both arms were extended. The throat was cut half-way round, revealing a dreadful wound, from which blood had flowed in great quantity, staining the pavement for some distance round. Across the right cheek to the nose was another gash, and a part of the right ear had been cut off. Following the plan in the Whitechapel murders, the miscreant was not content with merely killing his victim. The poor woman had been completely disemboweled, and part of the intestines had been laid on her neck. After careful notice had been taken of the position of the body when found, it was conveyed to the City Mortuary in Golden-lane. Here a more extended examination was made. The murdered woman was apparently about 40 years of age, about 5ft. in height, and evidently belonged to that unfortunate class of which the women done to death in Whitechapel were members. Indeed one of the policemen who saw the body expressed his confident opinion that he had seen the woman several times walking in the neighbourhood of Aldgate High-street. She was of dark complexion, with auburn hair and hazel eyes, and was dressed in shabby dark clothes. She work [sic] a black cloth jacket with imitation fur collar and three large metal buttons. Her dress was made of green chintz, the pattern consisting of Michaelmas daisies. In addition, she had on a thin white vest, light drab lindsey skirt, a very old dark green alpaca petticoat, brown ribbed stockings (mended at the feet with white material), black straw bonnet trimmed with black beads and grey and black velvet, and a large white handkerchief round the neck. In the pockets of the dress a peculiar collection of articles was found. Besides a small packet containing tea and other articles which people who frequent the common lodging-houses are accustomed to carry, the police found upon the body a white pocket-handkerchief, a blunt bone-handled table knife, a short clay pipe, and a red cigarette-case with white metal fittings. The knife bore no trace of blood, so could have no connection with the crime.
When the news of this additional murder became known the excitement in the crowded district of Aldgate was intense. Usually a busy place on a Sunday morning, Houndsditch and connecting streets presented a particularly animated appearance, men with barrows vending fruit and vegetables doing a brisk trade. Crowds flocked to the entrances to the square where the body had been discovered, but the police refused admittance to all but a privileged few. Sir Charles Warren visited the spot at a particularly early hour, and made himself thoroughly conversant with the neighbourhood and the details of the affair. Major Smith (Acting Superintendent of the City Police), Superintendent Foster, Detective-inspector McWilliam (Chief of the City Detective Department), Detective-sergeants Downes and Outram also attended during the morning. A little while after the finding of the body, all traces of blood had been washed away, by direction of the authorities, and there was little to indicate the terrible crime which had taken place. Before proceeding further it may be convenient to describe the scene of the murder. Mitre-square is an enclosed place in the rear of St. Katherine Cree Church, Leadenhall-street. It has three entrances, the principal one-and the only one having a carriage way-is at the southern end, leading into Mitre-street, a turning out of Aldgate High-street. There is a narrow court in the north-east corner leading into Duke-street, and another one at the north-west, by which foot passengers can reach St. James's-square, otherwise known as the Orange Market. Mitre-square contains but two dwelling-houses, in one of which, singularly enough, a City policeman lives, whilst the other is uninhabited. The other buildings, of which there are only three, are large warehouses. In the south-east corner, and near to the entrance from Mitre-street, is the back yard of some premises in Aldgate, but the railings are closely boarded. It was just under these that the woman was found, quite hidden from sight by the shadow east by the corner of the adjoining house. The officer who found the body is positive that it could not have been there more than a quarter of an hour before he discovered it. He is timed to "work his beat," as it is called, in from ten to fifteen minutes, and is spoken of by his superior officers as a most trustworthy man.
The police theory is that the man and woman, who had met in Aldgate, watched the policeman pass round the square, and they then entered it for an immoral purpose. Whilst the woman lay on the ground her throat was cut above as described causing instant death. The murderer then hurriedly proceeded to mutilate the body, for the wounds, though so ghastly, do not appear to have been caused so skillfully and deliberately as in the case of the murder of Annie Chapman in Hanbury-street. Five minutes, some of the doctors think, would have sufficed for the completion of the murderer's work, and he was thus enabled to leave the ground before the return of the policeman on duty. None of the police on duty early yesterday morning appear to have had particular attention drawn to the man and woman together, and this appears strange at first when it is remarked that within the last few weeks the police have been keeping a particularly keen watch upon suspicious couples. The murderer probably avoided much blood staining on account of the woman being on her back at the time of the outrage; and leaving the square by either of the courts he would be able to pass quickly away through the many narrow thoroughfares without exciting observation. But one of the most extraordinary incidents in connection with the crime is that not the slightest scream or noise was heard. A watchman is employed at one of the warehouses in the square, and in a direct line, but a few yards away, on the other side of the square, a City policeman was sleeping. Many people would be about in the immediate neighbourhood even at this early hour, making preparations for the market which takes place every Sunday in Middlesex-street (formerly Petticoat-lane) and the adjacent thoroughfares. Taking everything into account, therefore, the murder must be pronounced one of extraordinary daring and brutality. The effect it has had upon the residents in the east of London is extraordinary. All day crowds thronged the streets leading to Mitre-square, discussing the crime, and the police in the neighbourhood of the square, under Inspector Izzard and Sergeants Dudman and Phelps, and other officers, were fully occupied in keeping back the excited and curious people. The woman up to the time of writing had not been identified, and the police admit that they have no information which can possibly be termed a clue.
The post-mortem examination of the body, which took place at the Mortuary, Golden-lane, and was conducted by Dr. Phillips, Dr. Gordon Brown, and Mr. G.W. Sequeira, occupied nearly four hours, but as to the results the doctors declined to speak.
From another source we hear the scene of the Mitre-square murder is within the area over which the City police exercise authority. Between Aldgate Pump and Houndsditch two narrow streets run out of the main thoroughfare, in a northerly direction. One of these is Mitre-street and the other Duke-street. About a hundred yards up the former thoroughfare the line of houses is broken, and turning to the right one almost enters an open space. This is Mitre-square. Crossing one finds at the right-hand corner a narrow passage leading into Duke-street, while at the left-hand corner is the entrance to a passage leading into St. James's-place, familiarly known as the Orange Market. The square has thus three approaches. One of the surrounding buildings facing on to the square is said to be occupied by a police-constable, but the remainder of the buildings are large warehouses. Mitre-court, as a whole, is well lighted at night, receiving the rays from as many as five street lamps; but there is one corner-that immediately on the right of a person walking from Mitre-street-which is but poorly illuminated. It was this corner that the murderer selected for his purpose. A police-constable, passing through the square on his beat, came into collision with the body of a woman that lay upon the pavement. The poor creature had been subjected to the same usage as the women Nicholls and Chapman, though in her case some additional mutilations had been effected. The face was slashed with a knife, the left ear and the nose being almost cut off. The news of the policeman's discovery brought a number of persons quickly upon the scene, and the body was removed to the City mortuary. Early in the day, the police took possession of the square for the purpose of searching for possible clues and making a plan of the surrounding locality for the use of the coroner. Later, however, the cordon of constables withdrew, and the hundreds of persons collected in the neighbourhood were enabled to get a nearer view of the spot where the tragedy was enacted. Inquiries in the neighbourhood have elicited the fact that, although several persons were awake in the houses about the square, no one heard any indication of what was going on. A man residing in Duke-street states that between twelve and two he was seated at an open window waiting for a friend's arrival, but that he heard no cries and saw no suspicious characters about. A night watchman employed in one of the warehouses in the square also states that he heard no noise. As the mutilations on the woman's face are said to indicate that a struggle took place between her and her assassin, the absence of noise is the more remarkable. When Police-constable Watkins found the body he at once sent for Mr. Sequira [sic], surgeon, of 34, Jury-street, who made an examination of the mutilations. A post-mortem examination was held on the body during the afternoon, and the greatest curiosity existed in the public mind as to whether any portion of the anatomy was found to be missing. The doctors and the police were exceedingly reticent on the point, though it was generally believed that this fear had been realised, and that the deceased had been treated in the same manner as the woman Chapman. During the afternoon and evening several hundreds of people visited Mitre-court and Berner-street, eager to glean additional information. The news quickly spread that a woman had visited the Whitechapel mortuary, and identified the body found in Berner-street as that of an unfortunate of her acquaintance named "Wally" Warden, who had lived in Brick-lane. It also transpired that shortly before the man with the pony trap raised the alarm that a woman had been murdered. A young girl had been standing in a bisecting thoroughfare not fifty yards from the spot where the body was found. She had, she said, been standing there for about twenty minutes, talking with her sweetheart, but neither of them heard any unusual noises. Some excitement was caused by the rumour that the police purposed to employ a bloodhound to assist in tracking the murderer, but it did not appear that the rumour was well-founded. It is stated by the police that a constable passes through Mitre-court about once in every quarter of an hour, and that Berner-street is patrolled by the force almost as frequently. In both cases, however, residents in the neighbourhood express grave doubts on the point.
At one o'clock yesterday morning the neighbourhood of Whitechapel-road was startled by the news that the body of a woman, with the throat cut, had been found in a yard in the adjoining thoroughfare of Berner-street. Before the first intensity of the excitement had abated, there arrived the intelligence of a second and more horribly tragedy, enacted close at hand. People learnt that in Mitre-square, Aldgate, nearly an hour later, a policeman had found the body of a woman, ripped and gashed in a ghastly fashion. The obvious inference that the same hand had perpetrated both butcheries was universally accepted. It was concluded that in both cases the assassin had been bent upon the mutilation of his victim, but that, in the yard in Berner-street, an interruption prevented the realization of his purpose. Circumstances that subsequently transpired gave weight to this assumption. The yard in Berner-street is situated on the right-hand side going west from Commercial-road. It is connected with a building, now used as a social club, which faces the roadway. The yard contains two small private houses, tenanted by Jews, some stables and some workshops, at present occupied by a sack-maker. Folding doors occur at the entrance to the yard, but for the convenience of those residing in the houses these are usually left wide open night and day. Jews and Socialists frequent the club, and until an early hour in the morning dancing and singing often take place within its walls. The house is in charge of a man and his wife, who sleep on the premises. The man possesses a pony-cart, with which he is usually out during the greater part of the day, selling, it is said, cocoanuts and sweets. It was this man who, on returning in the cart at one o'clock yesterday morning, discovered the body. As he drove into the yard the pony shied. The man looked down to see what had discomposed the animal, and saw lying in the roadway, close to one of the open doors, a black heap. Pulling the pony sharply round, he just succeeded in keeping his wheel off the object, which, on dismounting, he saw to be the recumbent form of a woman. He concluded that she was merely intoxicated, and going to the door he called to his wife, who was in the parlour on the ground floor, making tea, to bring a light. She did so, and they immediately found that the woman's throat was deeply cut and that her shoulders and hair were saturated with blood. Rushing into the club, the man raised the alarm, and the next minute a number of persons who had been engaged in festivities in a room at the back of the building poured into the streets. Some ran for a doctor, others for the police, and very soon people with frightened faces began to gather on the spot. A very brief interval elapsed before a constable arrived. He took up a position beside the body and said:-"Nobody is to touch it before a doctor comes." In spite of this order, however, a man placed his hand upon the face of the corpse and, in response to anxious inquiries, declared that it was still warm. A distressing incident now occurred. On the opposite side of the way, on the pavement in front of the Board School, a knot of young women gathered, and raised the cry-"Is it Molly? Can it be Molly?" Those who witnessed this scene say that the woman appeared to belong to the unfortunate class, and add that in a few minutes they had disappeared, apparently having satisfied themselves that the victim was not their companion. It was not long before the narrow roadway of Berner-street was densely crowded, many constables and plain-clothes men being in the throng. The body was removed to the mortuary, and the authorities took possession of the yards closing the doors. A woman who lives two doors from the club has made an important statement. It appears that shortly before a quarter to one o'clock she heard the measured, heavy tramp of a policeman passing the house on his beat. Immediately afterwards she went to the street-door, with the intention of shooting the bolts, though she remained standing there for ten minutes before she did so. During the ten minutes she saw no one enter or leave the neighbouring yard, and she feels sure that had any one done so she could not have overlooked the fact. The quiet and deserted character of the street appears even to have struck her at the time. Locking the door, she prepared to retire to bed, in the front room on the ground floor, and it so happened that in about four minutes' time she heard the pony cart pass the house, and remarked upon the circumstance to her husband. Thus, presuming that the body did not lay in the yard when the policeman passed-and it could hardly, it is thought, have escaped his notice-and presuming also that the assassin and his victim did not enter the yard while the woman stood at the door, it follows that they must have entered it within a minute or two before the arrival of the pony trap. If this be a correct surmise, it is easy to understand that the criminal may have been interrupted at his work. The man who drove the cart says he thinks it quite possible that after he had entered the yard the assassin may have fled out of it, having lurked in the gloom until a favourable moment arrived.
The scene of the first outrage is a narrow court in Berners-street [sic], a quiet thoroughfare running from Commercial-road down to the London, Tilbury, and Southend Railway. At the entrance to the court are a pair of large wooden gates, in one of which is a small wicket for use when the gates are closed. At the hour when the murderer accomplished his purpose these gates were open; indeed, according to the testimony of those living near, the entrance to the court is seldom closed. For a distance of 18 or 20 feet from the street there is a dead wall on each side of the court, the effect of which is to enshroud the intervening space in absolute darkness after sunset. Further back some light is thrown into the court from the windows of a workmen's club, which occupies the whole length of the court on the right, and from a number of cottages, occupied mainly by tailors and cigarette makers, on the left. At the time when the murder was committed, however, the lights in all of the dwelling-houses in question had been extinguished, whilst each illumination as came from the club, being from the upper storey, would fall on the cottages opposite, and would only serve to intensify the gloom of the rest of the court. From the position in which the body was found, it is believed that the moment the murderer had got his victim in the dark shadow near the entrance to the court he threw her to the ground, and with one gash severed her throat from ear to ear. The hypothesis that the wound was inflicted after and not before the woman fell is supported by the fact that there are severe bruises on her left temple and left cheek, this showing that force must have been used to prostrate her, which would not have been necessary had her throat been already cut. When discovered the body was found as if the woman had fallen forward, her feet being about a couple of yards from the street, and her head in a gutter which runs down the right hand side of the court close to the wall. The woman lay on her left side face downwards, her position being such that although the court at that part is only nine feet wide, a person walking up the middle might have passed the recumbent body without notice. The condition of the corpse, however, and several other circumstances which have come to light prove pretty conclusively that no considerable period elapsed between the committal of the murder and the discovery of the body. In fact, it is pretty generally conjected that the assassin was disturbed while at his ghastly work, and made off before he had completed his designs. All the features of the case go to connect the tragedy with that which took place three-quarters of an hour later a few streets distant. The obvious poverty of the woman, her total lack of jewellery or ornaments, and the soiled condition of her clothing are entirely opposed to the theory that robbery could have been the motive; and the secrecy and dispatch with which the crime was effected are equally good evidence that the murder was not the result of an ordinary street brawl. At the club referred to above-the International Workmen's Educational Club-which is an off-shoot of the Socialist League and a rendezvous of a number of foreign residents, chiefly Russians, Poles, and Continental Jews of various nationalities, it is customary on Saturday nights to have friendly discussions on topics of mutual interest, and to wind up the evening's entertainment with songs, &c. The proceedings commenced on Saturday about 8.30 with a discussion on the necessity for Socialism amongst the Jews. This was kept up until about 11 o'clock, when a considerable portion of the company left for their respective homes. Between 20 and 30 remained behind, and the usual concert which followed was not concluded when the intelligence was brought in by the steward of the club that a woman had been done to death with a few yards of them, and within earshot of their jovial songs. The people residing in the cottages on the other side of the court were all indoors, and most of them in bed by midnight. Several of these persons remember laying awake and listening to the singing, and they also remember it coming to an abrupt termination, but during the whole of the time from retiring to rest until the body was discovered no one heard anything in the nature of a scream or woman's cry of distress. It was Lewis Diemschitz, the steward, who found the body. Constables were quickly on the spot, and the gates at the entrance to the court having been closed, and a guard set on all the exits of the club and the cottages, the Superintendent of the District and Divisional Surgeon were sent for. In a few minutes Dr. Phillips was at the scene of the murder, and a brief examination sufficed to show that life had been extinct some minutes. Careful note having been taken of the position of the body, it was removed to the parish mortuary of St. George's-in-the-East, Cable-street, to await identification. The woman appears to be about 30 years of age. Her hair is very dark, with a tendency to curl, and her complexion is also dark. Her features are sharp, and somewhat pinched, as though she had endured considerable privations recently, an impression confirmed by the entire absence of the kind of ornaments commonly affected by women of her station. She wore a rusty black dress of a cheap kind of sateen with a velveteen bodice, over which was a black diagonal worsted jacket with fur trimming. Her bonnet, which had fallen from her head when she was found in the yard, was of black crape, and inside, apparently with the object of making the article fit closer to the head, was folded a copy of the Star newspaper. In her right hand were tightly clasped some grapes, and in her left she held a number of sweetmeats. Both the jacket and the bodice were open towards the top, but in other respects the clothes were not disarranged. The linen was clean and in tolerably good repair. The cut in the woman's throat, which was the cause of death, was evidently effected with a very sharp instrument, and was made with one rapid incision. The weapon was apparently drawn across the throat rather obliquely from left to right, and in its passage it severed both the wind pipe and the jugular vein. As the body lies in the mortuary the head seems to be almost severed, the gash being about three inches long and nearly the same depth. In the pocket of the woman's dress were discovered two pockethandkerchiefs-a gentleman's and a lady's-a brass thimble, and a skein of black darning worsted. In addition to Dr. Phillips, the body was examined both before and after removal to the mortuary by Dr. Kaye and Dr. Blackwell, both of whom reside in the vicinity of Berner-street. On the arrival of the superintendent from Leman-street Police-station, which took place almost simultaneously as that of the divisional surgeon, steps were immediately taken to ascertain whether the members of the club were in any way connected with the murder. The names and addresses of all the men present were taken, and a vigorous search of person and premises was instituted, much to the annoyance of the members. The students in the court had to submit to a similar scrutiny. In neither case, however, was any incriminating evidence discovered. It was five o'clock before the police had finished their investigations at the club, for in addition to the search referred to above, inquiries were made which resulted in a number of written statements which had to be signed by members. The fact that another murder had been committed soon became known in the neighbourhood, and long before daybreak the usually quiet thoroughfare was the scene of great excitement. Extra police had to be posted right along the street, and even with this precaution locomotion from an early hour was a matter of extreme difficulty. A large crowd followed the body to the mortuary, and here again it was found necessary to take unusual precautions to keep back the crowd. As the news circulated further afield immense numbers of people flocked to Whitechapel, and before noon the neighbourhood of Aldgate and Commercial-road was literally invaded by persons curious to see the spots selected for this and the other murders of the series.
It is believed in police circles that the murderer was disturbed in his work by the arrival of Diemschitz, and that he made off as soon as he heard the cart at the top of the street.
Mr. Wynne Baxter, the coroner of the district, was communicated with as soon as the details were ascertained, and he has fixed the inquest for to-day, at 11 o'clock, at the Vestry Hall, Cable-street.
The following are the most important statements which have yet been made by persons who were amongst the earliest to arrive at the scene of the crime:-
Lewis Diemschitz, a Russian Jew, and the steward of the International Working Men's Club, in the yard of which the murder was committed, says: I am a traveler in the common jewellery trade, working for myself alone. I have been steward of this club for six or seven years, and I live on the premises. It has been my habit for some time past to go on Saturdays to Westow Hill, Crystal Palace, where there is a market at which I sell my wares. This (Sunday) morning I got back from Westow market as usual about one o'clock. I drove up to the gate of the clubhouse in my little cart, drawn by a pony, after being all day at the market. My pony is inclined to shy a little, and it struck me when I was passing through the double gates into the yard that he wanted to keep too much to the left side against the wall. I couldn't make out what was the matter, so bent my head to see if there was anything to frighten him. Then I noticed that there was something unusual about the ground, but I could not tell what it was except that it was not level. I mean that there was something there like a little heap. But I thought it was only mud or something of that kind, and did not take much notice of it. However, I touched it with my whip-handle, and then I was able to tell that it was not mud. I wanted to see what it was, so jumped out of the trap and struck a match. Then I saw that there was a woman lying there. At that time I took no further notice, and didn't know whether she was drunk or dead. All I did was to run indoors and ask where my missis was because she is of weak constitution, and I did not want to frighten her. I found that my wife was sitting downstairs, and I then told some of the members of the club that something had happened in the yard, but I did not say whether the woman was murdered or only drunk. One of the members who is known as Isaacs went out with me. We struck a match and saw blood running from the gate all the way down to the side door of the club. We had the police sent for at once, but I believe it was several minutes before a constable could be found. There was another member of the club named Eagle, who also ran out to get a policeman. He went in a different direction to the others, and managed to find two officers somewhere in Commercial-road. One of them was 262 H. An officer blew his whistle, and several more policemen came up. One of them was sent for a doctor. Dr. Phillips, the police surgeon, of Spital-square, and Dr. Kaye, of Blackwall, both came. The police afterwards took the names of all the members of the club, and they say that all of us have to give evidence about it. It was about five o'clock before the officers left us. Being asked to describe the body as well as he could, Diemschitz said: I should think the woman was about 27 or 28 years old. I fancy she was of light complexion. (This turns out to be an incorrect description, but the man appears to have been too frightened to make a careful examination.) It seemed to me that her clothes were in perfect order. I could see that her throat was fearfully cut. She had dark clothes on, and wore a black crape bonnet. Her hands were clenched, and when the doctor opened them I saw that she had been holding grapes in one hand and sweetmeats in the other. I could not say whether or not she was an unfortunate, but if she was I should judge her to be of a rather better class than the women we usually see about this neighbourhood. I don't think anybody in this district, and certainly none of our members, had ever seen her before. The police removed the body to Cable-street Mortuary. When I first saw the woman she was lying on her left side. Her left hand was on the ground, and the right was crossed over the breast. Her head was down the yard, and her feet towards the entrance, not more than about a yard or so inside the gates. I keep my pony and trap in Cable-street, but I went down to the club first to deposit my goods there.
A man named Morris Eagle, also a Russian Jew, says: I frequent this club, and I was passing into it so late as twenty minutes to one this morning, which was just twenty minutes before the body was discovered. I had been there earlier in the evening, but left about twelve o'clock, in order to take home my young lady. When I returned, I came along by the small streets in this district, but noticed nothing unusual. There were a number of men and women about, as there always are about that time; but the streets were not more lively than usual, and I saw nothing suspicious. When I got back to the club in Berner-street the front door was closed, and so I passed through the gate on the left-hand side of the house to get in by the side door. I went over the same ground as Diemschitz did later on, but I saw nothing on the ground. The gates were thrown wide back. In fact it is very seldom that they are closed. It is customary for members of the club to go in by the side door to prevent knocking at the front. There is no light in the yard, but of course there are lamps in the street. After I got into the club there was some singing, and after I had been in 20 minutes a man came in and said something about a woman being in the yard. I went into the yard and struck a match, and then I could see that there was blood on the ground. I heard Diemschitz calling for the police, and I ran into the Commercial-road. I found two officers at the corner of Christian-street, and told them what was the matter. When one of the policemen saw the blood he sent his companion for a doctor. In the meantime I went straight to Leman-street and called out an inspector. I did not notice the appearance of the woman, because the sight of the blood upset me and I could not look at it.
A young Russian Pole named Isaac M. Kozebrodski, born in Warsaw, who speaks the English language imperfectly, gave the following information:-I was in this club last night. I came in about half-past six in the evening. About twenty minutes to one this morning Mr. Diemschitz called me out to the yard. He told me there was something in the yard, and told me to come and see what it was. When we had got outside he struck a match, and when we looked down on the ground we could see a long stream of blood. It was running down the gutter from the direction of the gate, and reached to the back door of the club. I should think there was blood in the gutter for a distance of five or six yards. I went to look for a policeman at the request of Diemschitz or some other member of the club, but I took the direction towards Grove-street and could not find one. I afterwards went into the Commercial-road along with Eagle, and found two officers. The officers did not touch the body, but sent for a doctor. A doctor came, and an inspector arrived just afterwards. While the doctor was examining the body, I noticed that she had some grapes in her right hand and some sweets in her left. I saw a little bunch of flowers stuck above her right bosom.
Joseph Love, a man just arrived in England from the United States, and who is living temporarily at the club until he can find lodgings, says:-I was in the club yard this (Sunday) morning about twenty minutes to one. I came out first at half-past twelve to get a breath of fresh air. I passed out into the street, but did not see anything unusual. The district appeared to me to be quiet. I remained out until twenty minutes to one, and during that time no one came into the yard. I should have seen anybody moving about there.
Several members of the club, including the steward, stated that the yard adjoining the building has never been used for immoral purposes.
Dr. Blackwell says-At about ten minutes past one in the morning I was called to 40, Berner-street by a policeman, where I found a woman who had been murdered. Her head had been almost severed from her body. She could not have been dead more than twenty minutes, the body being perfectly warm. The woman did not appear to be a Jewess, but more like an Irish woman. I roughly examined her, and found no other injuries; but this I cannot definitely state until I have made a further investigation of the body. She had on a black-velvet jacket, and black dress of different material. In her hand she held a box of cachous; whilst pinned to her dress was a flower. Altogether, judging from her appearance, I should say she belong to the immoral class; at least, her general get-up would lead me to suppose that. I have no doubt that the same man committed both these murders, and should say he is a maniac, but one at least who is accustomed to use a heavy knife. I should say that as the woman had held sweets in her left hand that her head was dragged back by means of a silk handkerchief she wore round her neck, and her throat was then cut. One of her hands, too, was smeared with blood, so she may have used this in her rapid struggle. I have no doubt that, the woman's windpipe being completely cut through, she was unable to make any sound. I might say it does not follow that the murderer would be bespattered with blood, for as he is sufficiently cunning in other things he could contrive to avoid coming in contact with the blood by reaching well forward.
Abraham Heshburg, a young fellow, living at 28, Berner-street, said: Yes; I was one of those who first saw the murdered woman. It was about a quarter to one o'clock, I should think, when I heard a policeman's whistle blown, and came down to see what was the matter. In the gateway two or three people had collected, and when I got there I saw a short dark young woman lying on the ground with a gash between four and five inches long in her throat. I should say she was from 25 to 28 years of age. Her head was towards the north wall, against which she was lying. She had a black dress on, with a bunch of flowers pinned on the breast. In her hand there was a little piece of paper containing five or six cachous. The body was found by a man whose name I do not know-a man who goes out with a pony and barrow, and lives up the archway, where he was going, I believe, to put up his barrow on coming home from market. He thought it was his wife at first, but when he found her safe at home he got a candle and found this woman. He never touched it till the doctors had been sent for. The little gate is always open, or at all events always unfastened. There are some stables up there-Messrs. Duncan, Woollatt, and Co.'s, I believe-and there is a place to which a lot of girls take home sacks which they have been engaged in making. None of them would be there, though, after about one on Saturday afternoon. None of us recognised the woman and I do not think she belongs to this neighbourhood. She was dressed very respectably. There seemed to be no wounds on the body.
The house which adjoins the yard on the south side, No. 38, is tenanted by Barnett Kentorrich, who, interrogated as to whether he heard any disturbance during the night, said: I went to bed early, and slept till about three o'clock, during which time I heard no unusual sound of any description. At three o'clock some people were talking loudly outside my door, so I went out to see what was the matter, and learned that a woman had been murdered. I did not stay out long, though, and know nothing more about it. I do not think the yard bears a very good character at night, but I do not interfere with any of the people about here. I know that the gate is not kept fastened.
Mrs. Mortimer, living at 36, Berner-street, four doors from the scene of the tragedy, says: I was standing at the door of my house nearly the whole time between half-past twelve and one o'clock this (Sunday) morning, and did not notice anything unusual. I had just gone indoors, and was preparing to go to bed, when I heard a commotion outside, and immediately ran out, thinking that there was another row at the Socialists' Club close by. I went to see what was the matter, and was informed that another dreadful murder had been committed in the yard adjoining the clubhouse, and on going inside I saw the body of a woman lying huddled up just inside the gates with her throat cut from ear to ear. A man touched her face, and said it was quite warm, so that the deed must have been done while I was standing at the door of my house. There was certainly no noise made, and I did not observe anyone enter the gates. It was just after one o'clock when I went out, and the only man whom I had seen pass through the street previously was a young man carrying a black shiny bag, who walked very fast down the street from the Commercial-road. He looked up at the club, and then went round the corner by the Board School. I was told that the manager or steward of the club had discovered the woman on his return home in his pony cart. He drove through the gates, and my opinion is that he interrupted the murderer, who must have made his escape immediately under cover of the cart. If a man had come out of the yard before one o'clock I must have seen him. It was almost incredible to me that the thing could have been done without the steward's wife hearing a noise, for she was sitting in the kitchen from which a window opens four yards from the spot where the woman was found. The body was lying slightly on one side, with the legs a little drawn up as if in pain, the clothes being slightly disarranged, so that the legs were partly visible. The woman appeared to me to be respectable, judging by her clothes, and in her hand were found a bunch of grapes and some sweets. A young man and his sweetheart were standing at the corner of the street, about 20 yards away, before and after the time the woman must have been murdered, but they told me they did not hear a sound.
Charles Letchford, living at 30, Berners-street says: "I passed through the street at half-past 12, and everything seemed to me to be going on as usual, and my sister was standing at the door at 10 minutes to one, but did not see anyone pass by. I heard the commotion when the body was found, and heard the policemen's whistles, but did not take any notice of the matter, as disturbances are very frequent at the club, and I thought it was only another row."
The following statements have been made in connection with the Mitre-square murder:
A man named Albert Baskert says:-I was in the Three Nuns Hotel, Aldgate, on Saturday night, when a man got into conversation with me. He asked me questions which now appear to me to have some bearing upon the recent murders. He wanted to know whether I knew what sort of loose women used the public bar at that house, when they usually left the street outside, and where they were in the habit of going. He asked further questions, and from his manner seemed up to no good purpose. He appeared to be a "shabby genteel" sort of man, and was dressed in black clothes. He wore a black felt hat, and carried a black bag. We came out together at closing time (twelve o'clock) and I left him outside Aldgate railway station.
Morris, the night watchman in Mitre-square, has made a statement in which he says about a quarter to two o'clock the policeman upon the beat knocked at the door of the warehouse. When he replied, the constable said, "For God's sake, man, come out and assist me; another woman has been ripped open." He said "All right, keep yourself cool while I light a lamp." Having done so he accompanied the constable to the south corner of the square, where he saw a woman lying stretched upon the pavement with her throat cut and horribly mutilated. He then left the constable and proceeded into Aldgate, where he blew his whistle, and other police officers soon made their appearance. The whole shape of the woman was marked out in blood upon the pavement. In addition to her throat being cut there were two slashes across the face, one of the cuts almost completely severing the nose. The woman's face was so mutilated that he could not describe what she was like. She wore a dark skirt and a black bonnet, and her appearance was exceedingly shabby. The strangest part of the whole thing was that he did not hear the slightest sound. As a rule he could hear the footsteps of the policeman as he passed on his beat every quarter of an hour, so that it appeared impossible that the woman could have uttered any sound without his detecting it. It was only on the night that he remarked to some policeman that he wished the "butcher" would come round in the square, and he would give him a doing; yet the "butcher" had come and he was perfectly ignorant of it.
The woman murdered in Berner-street has been identified as Elizabeth Stride, who, it seems, had been leading a loose life. At eleven o'clock last night a representative of the Central News visited Elizabeth Stride's late residence, No. 32, Flower and Dean-street, Spitalfields-a common lodging-house, inhabited by men and women of the poorest kind. The female occupants were afraid to venture into the streets after sunset, but they were listening with eagerness to the information afforded them from time to time by male occupants arriving from the streets. Inquiries made among these wretched people elicited the fact that the deceased, who was commonly known as "Long Liz," left Flower and Dean-street between 6 and 7 o'clock on Saturday night. She then said that she was not going to meet any one in particular. Stride is believed to be a Swedish woman from Stockholm. According to her associates, she was of calm temperament, rarely quarrelling with any one; in fact, she was so good-natured that she would "do a good turn for any one." Her occupation was that of a charwoman. She had the misfortune to lose her husband in the Princess Alice disaster on the Thames some years ago. She had lost her teeth, and suffered from a throat affection. She was identified at the mortuary by John Arundell and Charles Preston, who reside at 32, Flower and Dean-street.
The following is a description of a man stated to have been seen in company with the woman murdered in Berner-street, and for whom the police are looking:-Age 28; height 5ft. 8in.; complexion dark; no whiskers; black diagonal coat, hard felt hat, collar and tie; carried a newspaper parcel; was of respectable appearance.
News of the further Whitechapel outrage spread so quickly in London that at the morning service some pulpit references were made at the Metropolitan Tabernacle, where there was a crowded congregation. Mr. Spurgeon prayed thus:-"We hear startling news of abounding sin in this great city. Oh God, put an end to this, and grant that we may hear no more of such deeds. Let Thy gospel permeate the city, and let not monsters in human shape escape Thee."
The Central News says:-On Thursday last the following letter, bearing the E.C. post-mark and directed in red ink, was delivered to this agency:-"25th Sept. Dear Boss,-I keep on hearing the police have caught me, but they won't fix me just yet. I have laughed when they look so clever and talk about being on the right track. That joke about Leather Apron gave me real fits. I am down on ---, and I shan't quit ripping them till I do get buckled. Grand work, the last job was. I gave the lady no time to squeal. How can they catch me now? I love my work, and want to start again. You will soon hear of me with my funny little games. I saved some of the proper red stuff in a ginger-beer bottle over the last job, to write with, but it went thick like glue, and I can't use it. Red ink is fit enough, I hope. Ha! ha! The next job I do I shall clip the lady's ears off, and send to the police-officers, just for jolly, wouldn't you? Keep this letter back till I do a bit more work, then give it out straight. My knife's so nice, and sharp, I want to get to work right away if I get a chance. Good luck.-Yours truly, JACK THE RIPPER.-Don't mind me giving the trade name.-Wasn't good enough to post this before I got all the red ink off my hands; curse it. No luck yet. They say I'm a doctor now. Ha! ha!"-The whole of this extraordinary epistle is written in red ink, in a free, bold, clerkly hand. It was of course treated as the work of a practical joker, but it is singular to note that the latest murders have been committed within a few days of the receipt of the letter; that apparently in the case of the last victim the murderer made an attempt to cut off the ears, and that he actually did mutilate the face in a manner which he has never before attempted. The letter is now in the hands of the Scotland-yard authorities.
Shortly before midnight a man whose name has not yet transpired was arrested in the Borough on suspicion of being the perpetrator of the murders in the East-end. Yesterday morning a tall dark man wearing an American hat entered a lodging-house in Union-street, known as Albert-chambers. He stayed throughout the day, and his peculiar manner rivetted [sic] the attention of his fellow-lodgers. He displayed great willingness to converse with them, and certain observations he made regarding the topic of the day aroused their suspicions. Last night this mysterious individual attracted the notice of the deputy keeper of the lodging-house, whose suspicions became so strong that he sent for a policeman. On the arrival of the officer the stranger was questioned as to his recent wanderings, but he could give no intelligible account of them, though he said he had spent the previous night on Blackfriars Bridge. He was conveyed to Stone's End Police-station, Blackman-street, Borough.
SIR,-As Chairman of the Whitechapel Vigilance Committee, who communicated without result with the Home Secretary with the view of obtaining, on behalf of the public at large, the offer of a Government reward for the apprehension and conviction of the assassin or assassins in the recent East-end atrocities, we shall be glad if you will allow us to state that the committee do not for one moment doubt the sincerity of the Home Secretary in refusing the said offer, as he apparently believes that it would not meet with a successful result. If he would, however, consider that in the case of the Phœnix Park murders the man Carey, who was surrounded by, we may say, a whole society steeped in crime, the money tempted him to betray his associates. In our opinion, if Mr. Matthews could see his way clear to coincide with our views, the Government offer would be successful. The reward should be ample for securing the informer from revenge, which would be a very great inducement in the matter, in addition to which such offer would convince the poor and humble residents of our East-end that the Government authorities are as much anxious to avenge the blood of these unfortunate victims as they were the assassination of Lord F. Cavendish and Mr. Burke.-Apologising for troubling you, believe us to be, faithfully yours.
1, 2, and 3, Alderney-road, Mile-end, E., Sept. 29.