Introduction
Victims
Suspects
Witnesses
Ripper Letters
Police Officials
Official Documents
Press Reports
Victorian London
Message Boards
Ripper Media
Authors
Dissertations
Timelines
Games & Diversions
Photo Archive
Ripper Wiki
Casebook Examiner
Ripper Podcast
About the Casebook

 Search:


Most Recent Posts:
Hutchinson, George: Possible reason for Hutch coming forward - by Sam Flynn 33 minutes ago.
Hutchinson, George: Possible reason for Hutch coming forward - by Robert St Devil 44 minutes ago.
Hutchinson, George: Possible reason for Hutch coming forward - by Sam Flynn 2 hours ago.
Hutchinson, George: Possible reason for Hutch coming forward - by Abby Normal 2 hours ago.
Hutchinson, George: Possible reason for Hutch coming forward - by Abby Normal 3 hours ago.
Hutchinson, George: Possible reason for Hutch coming forward - by Sam Flynn 3 hours ago.

Most Popular Threads:
Hutchinson, George: Possible reason for Hutch coming forward - (39 posts)
Kosminski, Aaron: My theory on Kosminski - (4 posts)

Wiki Updates:
Robert Sagar
Edit: Chris
May 9, 2015, 12:32 am
Online newspaper archives
Edit: Chris
Nov 26, 2014, 10:25 am
Joseph Lawende
Edit: Chris
Mar 9, 2014, 10:12 am
Miscellaneous research resources
Edit: Chris
Feb 13, 2014, 9:28 am
Charles Cross
Edit: John Bennett
Sep 4, 2013, 8:20 pm

Most Recent Blogs:
Mike Covell: A DECADE IN THE MAKING.
February 19, 2016, 11:12 am.
Chris George: RipperCon in Baltimore, April 8-10, 2016
February 10, 2016, 2:55 pm.
Mike Covell: Hull Prison Visit
October 10, 2015, 8:04 am.
Mike Covell: NEW ADVENTURES IN RESEARCH
August 9, 2015, 3:10 am.
Mike Covell: UPDDATES FOR THE PAST 11 MONTHS
November 14, 2014, 10:02 am.
Mike Covell: Mike’s Book Releases
March 17, 2014, 3:18 am.
   More Ripper Blogs »

Unmasking Jack the Ripper
"Perhaps the best Jack the Ripper documentary produced in recent years." North American and European DVD formats both available.
Buy now!

On the Trail of a Dead Man: The Identity of Jack the Ripper
Chris Miles
ISBN: 0-9546485-0-1
Milestone Press, 2004
Softcover, illus., 246pp.

Casebook Review:

Self-published, and written in a casual, conversation-style English, On the Trail of a Dead Man: The Identity of Jack the Ripper has a different, more-personal flavor than most other suspect-based Ripper books. Miles writes in the first person, and he spends a great deal of time detailing his personal experiences during his seven-month investigation into the Ripper crimes. You'll read about his film projects, his then wife Karen, a mysterious phone message left on his answering machine by an unknown East End resident, even Mr. Miles' own experiences of crime and murder... you'll even read about his late-night research-sessions, often characterized by too many cigarettes and too little sleep.

Its a long, personal journey which eventually comes to its conclusion - that George Hutchinson, a witness in the Mary Kelly murder, was, in fact, the famous murderer himself.

Now, Hutchinson isn't a new suspect. Three previous authors (Bob Hinton, Stephen Wright and Garry Wroe) have published books making the case against this eagle-eyed witness, and several other authors and researchers have publicly-noted that they favor him as their top suspect. In fact, Hutchinson might be considered one of the more "popular" suspects of the past decade.

Miles believes Hutchinson's physical description meets with many of the surviving witness accounts, and that his place of residence - the Victoria Home, Commercial street - was in a prime location, close to several of the murder sites and especially close to the location of the Goulston Street graffito. Hutchinson's detailed statement to Abberline, describing a well-to-do man with Kelly on the night of her murder also seems highly suspicious to Miles. He believes this to have been one of a series of deliberate attempts by Hutchinson to send disinformation to the police. According to Miles, the Goulston Street graffito was Hutchinson's ploy to throw suspicion on the Jews, while the strange spelling and grammar of the From Hell letter was his attempt to throw suspicion on an Irish/Cockney... specifically on Joseph Barnett. Miles deftly links his suspect to Joseph via his brother, Daniel Barnett, who lodged at the Victoria Home along with Hutchinson.

Several other linkages are proposed, and many other observations are furnished - some sensible, others a bit far-fetched. And although perhaps many of these arguments against Hutchinson are already familiar to those who have read Hinton, Wright and Wroe, Miles does offer some interesting new observations. In discussing the From Hell letter, for example, Miles suggests that the author was, in a way, predicting the end of his murder spree after Mary Kelly when he told Lusk he would "send you the bloody knif ... if you only wate a whil longer". According to Miles this offering of the Ripper's "tool of the trade" might be a symbolic, perhaps even unconscious way for the author to say he's close to finishing his intended work. An interesting and novel psychological interpretation.

Altogether, On the Trail of a Dead Man is a fine overview of the case against George Hutchinson. Although the well-read Ripperologist will likely find very few new, earth-shattering revelations here, the familiar, conversational tone of the book makes for very amusing reading, and Miles' talent as a professional screen-writer shines through every page. Well-researched and recommended.

Buy this book!
Search for new copies of this book at Amazon.com or Amazon.co.UK:
USA:
UK:

Search for used copies of this book at Abebooks:


Related pages:
  George Hutchinson (Br.)
       Dissertations: Suspect and Witness - The Police Viewpoint 
       Dissertations: The Man Who Shielded Jack the Ripper: George Hutchinson &... 
       Message Boards: George Hutchinson (British) 
       Press Reports: Atchison Daily Globe - 14 November 1888 
       Press Reports: Daily News - 14 November 1888 
       Press Reports: Decatur Daily Republican - 15 November 1888 
       Press Reports: East London Advertiser - 17 November 1888 
       Press Reports: Evening News - 14 November 1888 
       Press Reports: Evening Star - 14 November 1888 
       Press Reports: Graphic - 17 November 1888 
       Press Reports: Manchester Guardian - 14 November 1888 
       Press Reports: Montreal Daily Star - 14 November 1888 
       Press Reports: Morning Advertiser - 13 November 1888 
       Press Reports: Morning Advertiser - 14 November 1888 
       Press Reports: Newark Daily Advocate - 14 November 1888 
       Press Reports: Ottawa Citizen - 16 November 1888 
       Press Reports: Pall Mall Gazette - 14 November 1888 
       Press Reports: St. James Gazette - 14 November 1888 
       Press Reports: Star - 14 November 1888 
       Press Reports: Star - 15 November 1888 
       Press Reports: Times [London] - 14 November 1888 
       Press Reports: Times [London] - 2 September 1887 
       Ripper Media: From Hell... The Jack the Ripper Mystery 
       Ripper Media: Jack the Ripper... Person or Persons Unknown? 
       Ripper Media: Jack the Ripper: A Suspect Guide - George Hutchinson (Bri... 
       Ripper Media: Jack the Ripper: An American View 
       Ripper Media: Jack the Ripper: Person or Persons Unknown (E-Book) 
       Suspects: George Hutchinson (Br.) 
       Victims: Testimonies of George Hutchinson and Sara Lewis