Mr. MATTHEWS informed Mr. Bradlaugh that Friedrich Schumacher was arrested on Sept. 13, at Leman-street Police-station, as a suspected person. He gave an explanation and voluntarily signed a paper, after which he was released. An inquiry had been held at Scotland-yard into the circumstances of the arrest, with the result that an inspector had been reprimanded and a sergeant reduced in rank.
Mr. PICKERSGILL asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department who was at present the Head of the Central Investigation Department; whether the Home Office communicated with him directly or through the Chief Commissioner of Metropolitan Police; and whether arrangements had been made at the Home Office for the investigation of crime apart from Scotland-yard.
Mr. MATTHEWS: Mr. Anderson is at present the head of the Criminal Investigation Department. The practice at the Home Office has been to communicate directly with him on matters relating specially to his department. Where more than departmental interests are involved the communications are made through the Commissioner. The answer to the last clause of the question is in the negative.
Mr. PICKERSGILL: Will the right hon. gentleman give us some definite information as to the position of Mr. Monro?
Mr. GENT-DAVIS (whose rising on the front bench below the gangway on the Government side was met with Opposition cheers) said: I should like to ask the Home Secretary a question of which I gave him private notice on Friday, viz., whether the reason given by Mr. James Munro for his resignation of his office of Assistant-Commissioner of Police was, that under the system pursued by the Chief Commissioner, he could no longer be responsible for the administration of the Criminal Investigation Department, and whether the papers on the subject are to be laid on the table of the House? (Opposition cheers.)
Mr. MATTHEWS: I have already given an answer to this question. As to Mr. Monro's position I have informed the hon. member for Bethnal-green that I was deriving the benefit of his advice in matters relating to crime. Amongst other subjects, I have had a consultation with Mr. Monro on the reorganisation of the Criminal Investigation Department, he being more familiar with the work than anybody else in the country. (Hear, hear.) His advice is most valuable. Mr. Monro resigned, as I have previously informed the House, owing to differences of opinion between himself and the Chief Commissioner on questions of police administration.
Mr. GENT-DAVIS: I should like to ask, if that is the case, whether the Home Secretary will lay on the table the important documents showing the position in which matters stand, and the absolute reasons which caused Mr. Monro to resign.
Mr. MATTHEWS: It is not customary to lay papers of that character on the table.
Mr. GENT-DAVIS: Then I am afraid we must get them to-night. (Opposition cheers and laughter.)
Mr. CONYBEARE asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he could state the exact reason why the late head of the Detective Department in the Metropolitan Police resigned his position; whether it was the fact that Sir C. Warren had now practically the direct control of the Detective Department; and whether, in view of the constant recurrence of atrocious murders, and the failure of the new organisation and methods to detect the murderer, he would consider the propriety of making some change in the arrangements of Scotland-yard. At the same time he asked whether it was true, as reported that afternoon, that Sir Charles Warren had tendered his resignation, and that it had been accepted.
Mr. MATTHEWS: I have already more than once stated the reasons of Mr. Monro's resignation. Mr. Anderson is now in direct control of the Investigation Department, but under the superintendence and control of the Chief Commissioner as provided by statute. The failure of the police so far to detect the person guilty of the Whitechapel murders is due, not to any new reorganisation in the department, but to the extraordinary cunning and secrecy which characterise the commission of the crimes. I have already for some time had under consideration the whole system of the Criminal Investigation Department, with the view to introducing any improvement that may be suggested. As to the final question of the hon. member, the Chief Commissioner did, on the 8th inst., tender his resignation to her Majesty's Government, and that resignation has been accepted. (Loud cheers.)
Mr. CUNINGHAME GRAHAM: I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he contemplates offering any additional reward for the capture of the Whitechapel murderer. In doing so I should like to say that I do not put the question with any desire to embarrass the Government, but simply because considerable excitement prevails on the question. (Opposition cheers.)
Dr. HUNTER: Before the right hon. gentleman answers that question I wish to ask whether he has taken into consideration the propriety of extending the offer of a free pardon, which, as I understand, applies to the last murder to the previous murders, specially having regard to the fact that in the first murder, according to the dying testimony of the woman, several persons were concerned in it.
Mr. MATTHEWS: Sir, owing to the public interest taken in this question, I hope the House will allow me to state at greater length than usual the reasons why I have hitherto refrained from offering a reward. (Hear, hear.) Before 1884, it was the frequent practice of the Home Office to offer rewards, sometimes of a very large amount, in serious cases. In 1883, particularly, several rewards were offered ranging from £200 to £2,000, in such cases as the murder of Police-constable Bowles, and the dynamite explosion in Charles-street, and at various railway stations. These rewards, like that of £10,000 for the Phoenix Park murder, proved ineffectual and produced no evidence of any value. In 1884 there was a change of policy. Early in that year a remarkable case occurred of a conspiracy to cause an explosion at the German Embassy and to plant papers on an innocent person and accuse him of the crime in order to obtain the reward. The revelations of this conspiracy led the then Home Secretary, the right hon. gentleman the member for Derby - (hear, hear) - to reconsider the whole question of rewards. He consulted the police authorities in England and in Ireland, and the conclusions he arrived at were that the practice of offering large or small rewards in cases of serious crime was not only ineffectual but mischievous - (hear, hear) - that rewards produced, generally speaking, no practical result, beyond satisfying the public demand for action; that they operated prejudicially by relaxing the exertions of the police, and tended to produce false rather than reliable information. He decided, therefore, in all cases to abandon the practice of offering rewards, as they had been found by experience to be a hindrance rather than an aid. These conclusions were publicly acted upon in 1884 in the important cases of the shocking murder and violation of a little girl in Middlesborough, and the dynamite outrage at London Bridge, in which latter case the City authorities offered a reward of £5,000. The principle thus established has since been adhered to. The whole subject was reconsidered in 1885 by Sir Richard Cross, in regard to a remarkable case of infanticide at Plymouth, and again in 1886, by the right hon. gentleman the member for Edinburgh, in the notorious case, "The Queen v. Louisa Hart." On both occasions, after careful consideration, and with the concurrence of the best authorities, the principle of offering no rewards was maintained, and rewards were refused. Since I have been at the Home Office I have followed the rule laid down by my predecessors. (Cheers.) I do not mean that the rule may not be subject to exception - such, for instance, when it is known who the criminal is, and information is wanted as to his hiding-place. In the Whitechapel murders, not only is this condition wanting, but at present the danger of a false charge is intensified by the excited state of public feeling. (Cheers.) I know how desirable it is to allay that feeling. I should have been glad if circumstances justified me in giving visible proof that the authorities are not heedless or indifferent. (Hear, hear.) I beg to assure the House that neither the Home Office nor Scotland-yard will leave a stone unturned to bring to justice the perpetrator of the abominable crimes which have outraged the feelings of the entire community. (Cheers.) With regard to the question of the hon. member below the gangway (Dr. Hunter), I will carefully consider the point.
Mr. CUNINGHAME GRAHAM: I beg to thank the right hon. gentleman for his explanation, and to assure him I entirely agree with what he has said. (Laughter.)
Mr. MONTAGU rose to explain the circumstances under which he had offered a reward when -
The SPEAKER informed the hon. member that such an explanation would not be in order at that moment.
Mr. MONTAGU bowed to the ruling of the chair.
Comparatively little that was new was elicited by the coroner's inquiry into the death of Marie Jeanette Kelly. Going beyond the statements that have already appeared in these columns, the principal evidence was that of Mary Ann Cox, residing in Miller's-court, who described a man she had seen entering the court with the deceased. It is stated that the police attach weight to her description, and will circulate it in the usual manner. The account of the man and his attire agrees with some of those statements previously given, and disagrees with others. The Berner-street suspect was described as a very dark man. The Hanbury-street victim was seen in company with a dark foreign-looking man, and a similar description was given of a suspected individual at the time of the Buck's-row murder. It is noteworthy, however, that there were two descriptions given of the suspected Mitre-square and Hanbury-street murderers, which agree in some respects with that furnished by the witness Cox of the man seen in Kelly's company on Thursday night. About ten minutes before the body of Catherine Eddowes was found in Mitre-square, a man about thirty years of age, of fair complexion, and with a fair moustache, was said to have been seen talking to her in the covered passage leading to the square. On the morning of the Hanbury-street murder, a suspicious looking man entered a public-house in the neighbourhood. He was of shabby-genteel appearance and had a sandy moustache. The first of these descriptions was given by two persons who were in the Orange Market and closely observed the man. The City police have been making inquiries for this man for weeks past, but without success, and they do not believe that he is the individual described by Cox. On the other hand the Metropolitan authorities are inclined to attach significance to it. Cox stated that the man who accompanied Kelly to her home carried a can or pot of beer. No trace of this beer has been found in the room, nor of the pewter in the ashes of the grate. Inquiry has equally failed to obtain evidence of Kelly or any person similar to the man described having bought beer at any of the neighbouring public-houses. Considering the amount of drinking on and off the premises of these establishments near midnight the mere absence of evidence on this point would not be surprising in any case.
By design, the medical testimony adduced at the inquest was limited to that which was absolutely required to enable the jury to find respecting the cause of death. We are enabled to state, on good authority, that notwithstanding all that has been said to the contrary, a portion of the bodily organs was missing. The police, and with them the divisional surgeon, have arrived at the conclusion that it is in the interest of justice not to disclose the details of the professional inquiry. On all hands the evidence of the witness who declares that she saw Kelly between eight and nine o'clock on Friday morning, is put down to error, the common impression being that the witness is thinking of what happened on probably the previous day. Those who have charge of the case are most of all surprised that the huge blaze in the unfortunate's woman's room - which the murderer kept up by burning his victim's clothes, in order, as it is supposed, to give him light to execute his appalling work - did not attract the attention of residents of the adjoining tenements.
An inquiry has been made to elicit the facts with reference to the non-employment of blood-hounds immediately the tragedy of Dorset-street was discovered. It appears that, at Sir Charles Warren's request, Mr. Brough, the well-known bloodhound breeder, of Scarborough, was communicated with shortly after the Mitre-square and Berner-street outrages, and asked to bring a couple of trained hounds up to London for the purpose of testing their capabilities in the way of following the scent of a man. The hounds were named Burgho and Barnaby, and in one of the trials Sir Charles Warren himself acted as the quarry, and expressed satisfaction at the result. Arrangements were made for the immediate conveyance of the animals to the spot in the event of another murder occurring, and in order to facilitate matters Mr. Brough, who was compelled to return to Scarborough, left the hounds in the care of a friend of his, Mr. Taunton, of Doughty-street, who was entrusted with their custody pending the conclusion of the negotiations which had been opened for the ultimate purchase of the dogs. Sir Charles Warren, however, would not give any definite assurance on this point, and Mr. Brough insisted on resuming possession of the animals. One of them, Burgho, was sent to a show at Brighton, the other remaining in Mr. Taunton's custody. About a fortnight ago this gentleman received a telegram from Leman-street Police-station, asking him to bring the dog to assist in discovering the perpetrators of a burglary in Commercial-street. The police then admitted that subsequently to the burglary they had been all over the premises, and Mr. Taunton pointed out to them that it was absurd to expect that the bloodhounds could accomplish anything under such conditions. The owner of the dogs, on learning these facts, telegraphed peremptorily insisting that Barnaby should be returned to him at once, having in view the danger of the hound being poisoned if it was known that the police were employing it to track burglars - and Mr. Brough had no guarantee of compensation in case of the animal suffering maltreatment. From these circumstances it will be seen that there has been no trained bloodhound in the metropolis at any time during the past fortnight. The Whitechapel police officials themselves were not aware of this fact, for their first thought on receiving the intelligence of the murder on Friday was to leave the room absolutely undisturbed until the hounds should be brought on the scene, and it was only when they learnt that there were no bloodhounds to be had that an entrance was effected into the chamber. There is, it seems, no truth in the rumoured failure of the hounds on Tooting-common; as a matter of fact, they were not tried. They were applied for in reference to the malicious killing of sheep on the common, but Mr. Taunton being out of town, they were not employed. This gentleman adds: "Under the circumstances in which the body of Marie Jeanette Kelly was found, I do not think bloodhounds would have been of any use. It was then broad daylight, and the streets crowded with people. The only chance for the hounds would be in the event of a murdered body being discovered, as the others were, in the small hours of the morning, and the dogs being put on the trail before many people were about."
Yesterday Mrs. McCarthy, the wife of the landlord of the house where the murder was enacted, received a post-card bearing the Folkestone post-mark, and signed "Jack Sheridan, the Ripper." In bad spelling and writing were the words, "Don't be alarmed. I am going to do another; but this time it will be a mother and daughter." The missive, which, unlike many of the previous communications to a similar effect, was written in black ink, was handed over to the detectives. The handwriting was carefully compared with similar letters, and found to be of a different character.
It was stated late last night that the persons taken in custody on the previous day had been liberated, and it is doubtful if the constabulary have obtained new clues to assist their search. A circumstantial statement was made last night by a labouring man who knew the deceased, which was very minute in its particulars regarding a man seen in company with the woman Kelly early on the morning of the 9th inst. According to this description the individual in question was of respectable appearance, about 5ft 6in in height, and 34 or 35 years of age, with dark complexion and dark moustache curled up at the ends. He wore a long dark coat trimmed with astrachan, a white collar with black necktie, in which was affixed a horse-shoe pin, and he had on a pair of dark gaiters with light buttons over button boots, and displayed from his waistcoat a massive gold chain. It has not been ascertained why the witness did not make this statement - so much fuller and so different from the others that have been given - immediately after the murder was discovered.
Yesterday, at the Shoreditch Town Hall, Dr. Macdonald, M.P., the coroner for the North-Eastern District of Middlesex, opened his inquiry relative to the death of Marie Jeanette Kelly, the woman whose body was discovered on Friday morning, terribly mutilated, in a room on the ground floor of 26, Dorset-street, entrance to which was by a side door in Miller's-court.
Superintendent T. Arnold, H Division; Inspector Abberline, of the Criminal Investigation Department; and Inspector Nairn represented the police. The deputy-coroner, Mr. Hodgkinson, was present during the proceedings.
The jury having answered to their names, one of them said: I do not see why we should have the inquest thrown upon our shoulders, when the murder did not happen in our district, but in Whitechapel.
The Coroner's Officer (Mr. Hammond): It did not happen in Whitechapel.
The Coroner ( to the juror, severely): Do you think that we do not know what we are doing here, and that we do not know our own district ? The jury are summoned in the ordinary way, and they have no business to object. If they persist in their objection I shall know how to deal with them. Does any juror persist in objecting ?
The Juror: We are summoned for the Shoreditch district. This affair happened in Spitalfields.
The Coroner: It happened within my district.
Another Juryman: This is not my district. I come from Whitechapel, and Mr. Baxter is my coroner.
The Coroner: I am not going to discuss the subject with jurymen at all. If any juryman says he distinctly objects, let him say so. (After a pause): I may tell the jurymen that jurisdiction lies where the body lies, not where it was found, if there was doubt as to the district where the body was found.
The jury having made no further objection, they were duly sworn, and were conducted by Inspector Abberline to view the body, which, decently coffined, was at the mortuary adjoining Shoreditch Church, and subsequently the jury inspected the room, in Miller's-court, Dorset-street, where the murder was committed. This apartment, a plan of which was given in yesterday's Daily Telegraph, is poorly furnished, and uncarpeted. The position of the two tables was not altered. One of them was placed near the bed, behind the door, and the other next to the largest of the two windows which look upon the yard in which the dustbin and water-tap are situated.
The Coroner (addressing the reporters) said a great fuss had been made in some papers about the jurisdiction of the coroner, and who should hold the inquest. He had not had any communication with Dr. Baxter upon the subject. The body was in his jurisdiction; it had been taken to his mortuary; and there was an end of it. There was no foundation for the reports that had appeared. In a previous case of murder which occurred in his district the body was carried to the nearest mortuary, which was in another district. The inquest was held by Mr. Baxter, and he made no objection. The jurisdiction was where the body lay.
Joseph Barnett deposed : I was a fish-porter, and I work as a labourer and fruit-porter. Until Saturday last I lived at 24, New-street, Bishopsgate, and have since stayed at my sister's, 21, Portpool-lane, Gray's Inn-road. I have lived with the deceased one year and eight months. Her name was Marie Jeanette Kelly, with the French spelling as described to me. Kelly was her maiden name. I have seen the body, and I identify it by the ear and eyes, which are all that I can recognise; but I am positive it is the same woman I knew. I lived with her in No. 13 room, at Miller's-court, for eight months. I separated from her on Oct. 30.
Why did you leave her ? - Because she had a woman of bad character there, whom she took in out of compassion, and I objected to it. That was the only reason. I left her on the Tuesday between five and six p.m. I last saw her alive between half-past seven and a quarter to eight on Thursday night last, when I called upon her. I stayed there for a quarter of an hour.
Were you on good terms ? - Yes, on friendly terms; but when we parted I told her I had no work, and had nothing to give her, for which I was very sorry.
Did you drink together ? - No, sir. She was quite sober.
Was she, generally speaking, of sober habits ? - When she was with me I found her of sober habits, but she has been drunk several times in my presence.
Was there any one else there on the Thursday evening ? - Yes, a woman who lives in the court. She left first, and I followed shortly afterwards.
Have you had conversation with deceased about her parents ? - Yes, frequently. She said she was born in Limerick, and went when very young to Wales. She did not say how long she lived there, but that she came to London about four years ago. Her father's name was John Kelly, a "gaffer" or foreman in an iron works in Carnarvonshire, or Carmarthen. She said she had one sister, who was respectable, who travelled from market place to market place. This sister was very fond of her. There were six brothers living in London, and one was in the army. One of them was named Henry. I never saw the brothers to my knowledge. She said she was married when very young in Wales to a collier. I think the name was Davis or Davies. She said she had lived with him until he was killed in an explosion, but I cannot say how many years since that was. Her age was, I believe, 16 when she married. After her husband's death deceased went to Cardiff to a cousin.
Did she live there long ? - Yes, she was in an infirmary there for eight or nine months. She was following a bad life with her cousin, who, as I reckon, and as I often told her, was the cause of her downfall.
After she left Cardiff did she come direct to London ? - Yes. She was in a gay house in the West-end, but in what part she did not say. A gentleman came there to her and asked her if she would like to go to France.
Did she go to France ? - Yes; but she did not remain long. She said she did not like the part, but whether it was the part or purpose I cannot say. She was not there more than a fortnight, and she returned to England, and went to Ratcliffe-highway. She must have lived there for some time. Afterwards she lived with a man opposite the Commercial Gas Works, Stepney. The man's name was Morganstone.
Have you seen that man ? - Never. I don't know how long she lived with him.
Was Morganstone the last man she lived with ? - I cannot answer that question, but she described a man named Joseph Fleming, who came to Pennington-street, a bad house, where she stayed. I don't know when this was. She was very fond of him. He was a mason's plasterer, and lodged in the Bethnal-green-road.
Was that all you knew of her history when you lived with her ? - Yes. After she lived with Morganstone or Fleming - I don't know which one was the last - she lived with me.
Where did you pick up with her first ? - In Commercial-street. We then had a drink together, and I made arrangements to see her on the following day - a Saturday. On that day we both of us agreed that we should remain together. I took lodgings in George-street, Commercial-street, where I was known. I lived with her, until I left her, on very friendly terms.
Have you heard her speak of being afraid of any one ? - Yes; several times. I bought newspapers, and I read to her everything about the murders, which she asked me about.
Did she express fear of any particular individual ? - No, sir. Our own quarrels were very soon over.
The Coroner: You have given your evidence very well indeed. (To the Jury): The doctor has sent a note asking whether we shall want his attendance here to-day. I take it that it would be convenient that he should tell us roughly what the cause of death was, so as to enable the body to be buried. It will not be necessary to go into the details of the doctor's evidence; but he suggested that he might come to state roughly the cause of death.
The jury acquiesced in the proposed course.
Thomas Bowyer stated: I live at 37, Dorset-street, and am employed by Mr. McCarthy. I serve in his chandler's shop, 27, Dorset-street. At a quarter to eleven a.m., on Friday morning, I was ordered by McCarthy to go to Mary Jane's room, No. 13. I did not know the deceased by the name of Kelly. I went for rent, which was in arrears. Knocking at the door, I got no answer, and I knocked again and again. Receiving no reply, I passed round the corner by the gutter spout, where there is a broken window - it is the smallest window.
Charles Ledger, an inspector of police, G Division, produced a plan of the premises.
Bowyer pointed out the window, which was the one nearest the entrance. He continued: There was a curtain. I put my hand through the broken pane and lifted the curtain. I saw two pieces of flesh lying on the table.
Where was this table ? - In front of the bed, close to it. The second time I looked I saw a body on this bed, and blood on the floor. I at once went very quietly to Mr. McCarthy. We then stood in the shop, and I told him what I had seen. We both went to the police-station, but first of all we went to the window, and McCarthy looked in to satisfy himself. We told the inspector at the police-station of what we had seen. Nobody else knew of the matter. The inspector returned with us.
Did you see the deceased constantly ? - I have often seen her. I knew the last witness, Barnett. I have seen the deceased drunk once.
By the Jury: When did you see her last alive ? - On Wednesday afternoon, in the court, when I spoke to her. McCarthy's shop is at the corner of Miller's-court.
John McCarthy, grocer and lodging-house keeper, testified: I live at 27, Dorset-street. On Friday morning, about a quarter to eleven, I sent my man Bowyer to Room 13 to call for rent. He came back in five minutes, saying, "Guv'nor, I knocked at the door, and could not make any one answer; I looked through the window and saw a lot of blood." I accompanied him, and looked through the window myself, saw the blood and the woman. For a moment I could not say anything, and I then said: "You had better fetch the police." I knew the deceased as Mary Jane Kelly, and had no doubt at all about her identity. I followed Bowyer to Commercial-street Police-station, where I saw Inspector Beck. I inquired at first for Inspector Reid. Inspector Beck returned with me at once.
How long had the deceased lived in the room ? - Ten months. She lived with Barnett. I did not know whether they were married or not; they lived comfortably together, but they had a row when the window was broken. The bedstead, bed-clothes, table, and every article of furniture belonged to me.
What rent was paid for this room ? - It was supposed to be 4s 6d a week. Deceased was in arrears 29s. I was to be paid the rent weekly. Arrears are got as best you can. I frequently saw the deceased the worse for drink. When sober she was an exceptionally quiet woman, but when in drink she had more to say. She was able to walk about, and was not helpless.
Mary Ann Cox stated: I live at No. 5 Room, Miller's-court. It is the last house on the left-hand side of the court. I am a widow, and get my living on the streets. I have known the deceased for eight or nine months as the occupant of No. 13 Room. She was called Mary Jane. I last saw her alive on Thursday night, at a quarter to twelve, very much intoxicated.
Where was this ? - In Dorset-street. She went up the court, a few steps in front of me.
Was anybody with her ? - A short, stout man, shabbily dressed. He had on a longish coat, very shabby, and carried a pot of ale in his hand.
What was the colour of the coat ? - A dark coat.
What hat had he ? - A round hard billycock.
Long or short hair ? - I did not notice. He had a blotchy face, and full carrotty moustache.
The chin was shaven ? - Yes. A lamp faced the door.
Did you see them go into her room ? - Yes; I said "Good night, Mary," and she turned round and banged the door.
Had he anything in his hands but the can ? - No.
Did she say anything ? - She said "Good night, I am going to have a song." As I went in she sang "A violet I plucked from my mother's grave when a boy." I remained a quarter of an hour in my room and went out. Deceased was still singing at one o'clock when I returned. I remained in the room for a minute to warm my hands as it was raining, and went out again. She was singing still, and I returned to my room at three o'clock. The light was then out and there was no noise.
Did you go to sleep ? - No; I was upset. I did not undress at all. I did not sleep at all. I must have heard what went on in the court. I heard no noise or cry of "Murder," but men went out to work in the market.
How many men live in the court who work in Spitalfields Market ? - One. At a quarter-past six I heard a man go down the court. That was too late for the market.
From what house did he go ? - I don't know.
Did you hear the door bang after him ? - No.
Then he must have walked up the court and back again? - Yes.
It might have been a policeman ? - It might have been.
What would you take the stout man's age to be ? - Six-and-thirty.
Did you notice the colour of his trousers ? - All his clothes were dark.
Did his boots sound as if the heels were heavy ? - There was no sound as he went up the court.
Then you think that his boots were down at heels ? - He made no noise.
What clothes had Mary Jane on ? - She had no hat; a red pelerine and a shabby skirt.
You say she was drunk ? - I did not notice she was drunk until she said good night. The man closed the door.
By the Jury: There was a light in the window, but I saw nothing, as the blinds were down. I should know the man again, if I saw him.
By the Coroner: I feel certain if there had been the cry of "Murder" in the place I should have heard it; there was not the least noise. I have often seen the woman the worse for drink.
Elizabeth Prater, a married woman, said: My husband, William Prater, was a boot machinist, and he has deserted me. I live at 20 Room, in Miller's-court, above the shed. Deceased occupied a room below. I left the room on the Thursday at five p.m., and returned to it at about one a.m. on Friday morning. I stood at the corner until about twenty minutes past one. No one spoke to me. McCarthy's shop was open, and I called in, and then went to my room. I should have seen a glimmer of light in going up the stairs if there had been a light in deceased's room, but I noticed none. The partition was so thin I could have heard Kelly walk about in the room. I went to bed at half-past one and barricaded the door with two tables. I fell asleep directly and slept soundly. A kitten disturbed me about half-past three o'clock or a quarter to four. As I was turning round I heard a suppressed cry of "Oh - murder!" in a faint voice. It seemed to proceed from the court.
Do you often hear cries of "Murder ?" - It is nothing unusual in the street. I did not take particular notice.
Did you hear it a second time ? - No.
Did you hear beds or tables being pulled about ? - None whatever. I went asleep, and was awake again at five a.m. I passed down the stairs, and saw some men harnessing horses. At a quarter to six I was in the Ten Bells.
Could the witness, Mary Ann Cox, have come down the entry between one and half-past one o'clock without your knowledge ? - Yes, she could have done so.
Did you see any strangers at the Ten Bells ? - No. I went back to bed and slept until eleven.
You heard no singing downstairs ? - None whatever. I should have heard the singing distinctly. It was quite quiet at half-past one o'clock.
Caroline Maxwell, 14, Dorset-street, said: My husband is a lodging-house deputy. I knew the deceased for about four months. I believe she was an unfortunate. On two occasions I spoke to her.
The Coroner: You must be very careful about your evidence, because it is different to other people's. You say you saw her standing at the corner of the entry to the court ? - Yes, on Friday morning, from eight to half-past eight. I fix the time by my husband's finishing work. When I came out of the lodging-house she was opposite.
Did you speak to her ? - Yes; it was an unusual thing to see her up. She was a young woman who never associated with any one. I spoke across the street, "What, Mary, brings you up so early ?" She said, "Oh, Carrie, I do feel so bad."
And yet you say you had only spoken to her twice previously; you knew her name and she knew yours ? - Oh, yes; by being about in the lodging-house.
What did she say ? - She said, "I've had a glass of beer, and I've brought it up again"; and it was in the road. I imagined she had been in the Britannia beer-shop at the corner of the street. I left her, saying that I could pity her feelings. I went to Bishopsgate-street to get my husband's breakfast. Returning I saw her outside the Britannia public-house, talking to a man.
This would be about what time ? - Between eight and nine o'clock. I was absent about half-an-hour. It was about a quarter to nine.
What description can you give of this man ? - I could not give you any, as they were at some distance.
Inspector Abberline: The distance is about sixteen yards.
Witness: I am sure it was the deceased. I am willing to swear it.
The Coroner: You are sworn now. Was he a tall man ? - No; he was a little taller than me and stout.
Inspector Abberline: On consideration I should say the distance was twenty-five yards.
The Coroner; What clothes had the man ? - Witness: Dark clothes; he seemed to have a plaid coat on. I could not say what sort of hat he had.
What sort of dress had the deceased ? - A dark skirt, a velvet body, a maroon shawl, and no hat.
Have you ever seen her the worse for drink ? - I have seen her in drink, but she was not a notorious character.
By the Jury: I should have noticed if the man had had a tall silk hat, but we are accustomed to see men of all sorts with women. I should not like to pledge myself to the kind of hat.
Sarah Lewis deposed: I live at 24, Great Pearl-street, and am a laundress. I know Mrs. Keyler, in Miller's-court, and went to her house at 2, Miller's-court, at 2.30a.m. on Friday. It is the first house. I noticed the time by Spitalfields' Church clock. When I went into the court, opposite the lodging-house I saw a man with a wideawake. There was no one talking to him. He was a stout-looking man, and not very tall. The hat was black. I did not take any notice of his clothes. The man was looking up the court; he seemed to be waiting or looking for some one. Further on there was a man and woman - the later being in drink. There was nobody in the court. I dozed in a chair at Mrs. Keyler's, and woke at about half-past three. I heard the clock strike.
What woke you up ? - I could not sleep. I sat awake until nearly four, when I heard a female's voice shouting "Murder" loudly. It seemed like the voice of a young woman. It sounded at our door. There was only one scream.
Were you afraid ? Did you wake anybody up ? - No, I took no notice, as I only heard the one scream.
You stayed at Keyler's house until what time ? - Half-past five p.m. on Friday. The police would not let us out of the court.
Have you seen any suspicious persons in the district ? - On Wednesday night I was going along the Bethnal-green-road, with a woman, about eight o'clock, when a gentleman passed us. He followed us and spoke to us, and wanted us to follow him into an entry. He had a shiny leather bag with him.
Did he want both of you ? - No; only one. I refused. He went away and came back again, saying he would treat us. He put down his bag and picked it up again, saying, "What are you frightened about ? Do you think I've got anything in the bag ?" We then ran away, as we were frightened.
Was he a tall man ? - He was short, pale-faced, with a black moustache, rather small. His age was about forty.
Was it a large bag ? - No, about 6in to 9in long. His hat was a high round hat. He had a brownish overcoat, with a black short coat underneath. His trousers were a dark pepper-and-salt.
After he left you what did you do ? - We ran away.
Have you seen him since ? - On Friday morning, about half-past two a.m., when I was going to Miller's-court, I met the same man with a woman in Commercial-street, near Mr. Ringer's public-house (the Britannia). He had no overcoat on.
Had he the black bag ? - Yes.
Were the man and woman quarrelling ? - No; they were talking. As I passed he looked at me. I don't know whether he recognised me. There was no policeman about.
Mr. George Bagster Phillips, divisional surgeon of police, said: I was called by the police on Friday morning at eleven o'clock, and on proceeding to Miller's-court, which I entered at 11.15, I found a room, the door of which led out of the passage at the side of 26, Dorset-street, photographs of which I produce. It had two windows in the court. Two panes in the lesser window were broken, and as the door was locked I looked through the lower of the broken panes and satisfied myself that the mutilated corpse lying on the bed was not in need of any immediate attention from me, and I also came to the conclusion that there was nobody else upon the bed, or within view, to whom I could render any professional assistance. Having ascertained that probably it was advisable that no entrance should be made into the room at that time, I remained until about 1.30p.m., when the door was broken open by McCarthy, under the direction of Superintendent Arnold. On the door being opened it knocked against a table which was close to the left-hand side of the bedstead, and the bedstead was close against the wooden partition. The mutilated remains of a woman were lying two-thirds over, towards the edge of the bedstead, nearest the door. Deceased had only an under-linen garment upon her, and by subsequent examination I am sure the body had been removed, after the injury which caused death, from that side of the bedstead which was nearest to the wooden partition previously mentioned. The large quantity of blood under the bedstead, the saturated condition of the palliasse, pillow, and sheet at the top corner of the bedstead nearest to the partition leads me to the conclusion that the severance of the right carotid artery, which was the immediate cause of death, was inflicted while the deceased was lying at the right side of the bedstead and her head and neck in the top right-hand corner.
The jury had no questions to ask at this stage, and it was understood that more detailed evidence of the medical examination would be given at a future hearing.
An adjournment for a few minutes then took place, and on the return of the jury the coroner said: It has come to my ears that somebody has been making a statement to some of the jury as to their right and duty of being here. Has any one during the interval spoken to the jury, saying that they should not be here to-day ?
Some jurymen replied in the negative.
The Coroner: Then I must have been misinformed. I should have taken good care that he would have had a quiet life for the rest of the week if anybody had interfered with my jury.
Julia Vanturney, 1, Miller's-court, a charwoman, living with Harry Owen, said: I knew the deceased for some time as Kelly, and I knew Joe Barnett, who lived with her. He would not allow her to go on the streets. Deceased often got drunk. She said she was fond of another man, also named Joe. I never saw this man. I believe he was a costermonger.
When did you last see the deceased alive ? - On Thursday morning, at about ten o'clock. I slept in the court on Thursday night, and went to bed about eight. I could not rest at all during the night.
Did you hear any noises in the court ? - I did not. I heard no screams of "Murder," nor any one singing.
You must have heard deceased singing ? - Yes; I knew her songs. They were generally Irish.
Maria Harvey, 3, New-court, Dorset-street, stated: I knew the deceased as Mary Jane Kelly. I slept at her house on Monday night and on Tuesday night. All the afternoon of Thursday we were together.
Were you in the house when Joe Barnett called ? - Yes. I said, "Well, Mary Jane, I shall not see you this evening again," and I left with her two men's dirty shirts, a little boy's shirt, a black overcoat, a black crÍpe bonnet with black satin strings, a pawn-ticket for a grey shawl, upon which 2s had been lent, and a little girl's white petticoat.
Have you seen any of these articles since ? - Yes; I saw the black overcoat in a room in the court on Friday afternoon.
Did the deceased ever speak to you about being afraid of any man ? - She did not.
Inspector Beck, H Division, deposed that, having sent for the doctor, he gave orders to prevent any person leaving the court, and he directed officers to make a search. He had not been aware that the deceased was known to the police.
Inspector Frederick G. Abberline, inspector of police, Criminal Investigation Department, Scotland-yard, stated: I am in charge of this case. I arrived at Miller's-court about 11.30 on Friday morning.
Was it by your orders that the door was forced ? - No; I had an intimation from Inspector Beck that the bloodhounds had been sent for, and the reply had been received that they were on the way. Dr. Phillips was unwilling to force the door, as it would be very much better to test the dogs, if they were coming. We remained until about 1.30 p.m., when Superintendent Arnold arrived, and he informed me that the order in regard to the dogs had been countermanded, and he gave orders for the door to be forced. I agree with the medical evidence as to the condition of the room. I subsequently took an inventory of the contents of the room. There were traces of a large fire having been kept up in the grate, so much so that it had melted the spout of a kettle off. We have since gone through the ashes in the fireplace; there were remnants of clothing, a portion of a brim of a hat, and a skirt, and it appeared as if a large quantity of women's clothing had been burnt.
Can you give any reason why they were burnt ? - I can only imagine that it was to make a light for the man to see what he was doing. There was only one small candle in the room, on the top of a broken wine-glass. An impression has gone abroad that the murderer took away the key of the room. Barnett informs me that it has been missing some time, and since it has been lost they have put their hand through the broken window, and moved back the catch. It is quite easy. There was a man's clay pipe in the room, and Barnett informed me that he smoked it.
Is there anything further the jury ought to know ? - No; if there should be I can communicate with you, sir.
The Coroner (to the jury): The question is whether you will adjourn for further evidence. My own opinion is that it is very unnecessary for two courts to deal with these cases, and go through the same evidence time after time, which only causes expense and trouble. If the coroner's jury can come to a decision as to the cause of death, then that is all that they have to do. They have nothing to do with prosecuting a man and saying what amount of penalty he is to get. It is quite sufficient if they find out what the cause of death was. It is for the police authorities to deal with the case and satisfy themselves as to any person who may be suspected later on. I do not want to take it out of your hands. It is for you to say whether at an adjournment you will hear minutiae of the evidence, or whether you will think it is a matter to be dealt with in the police-courts later on, and that, this woman having met with her death by the carotid artery having been cut, you will be satisfied to return a verdict to that effect. From what I learn the police are content to take the future conduct of the case. It is for you to say whether you will close the inquiry to-day; if not, we shall adjourn for a week or fortnight, to hear the evidence that you may desire.
The Foreman, having consulted with his colleagues, considered that the jury had had quite sufficient evidence before them upon which to give a verdict.
The Coroner: What is the verdict:
The Foreman: Wilful murder against some person or persons unknown.
Last night a meeting of the delegates from the various Liberal and Radical clubs and associations in the metropolis took place at the Memorial Hall, Farringdon-street, with the object of considering what steps should be taken to secure a decision in the High Courts with reference to the action of Sir Charles Warren in connection with the Trafalgar-square meetings. Dr. Pankhurst took the chair, and there were present Mr. Cunninghame Graham, M.P., Mr. Conybeare, M.P., Dr. Reed, and Mr. Edward Dillon Lewis. - Mr. Cunninghame Graham proposed a resolution to the effect that this meeting rejoiced to hear of the resignation of Sir Charles Warren, and was of opinion that no military man should be appointed to fill his place. The meeting further hoped that in future the duties of the office would not be discharged without regard to public liberty and the right of public meeting. - Mr. Conybeare seconded the resolution, and both gentlemen dwelt on the importance of the affairs of the metropolis being left to the government of the people, and pointed out that in provincial towns this method worked satisfactorily. They particularly alluded to Mr. Gladstone's meeting in a public place in Birmingham, a right which was denied in London. Reference was next made to the legal question, in connection with which an appeal is pending against a decision arrived at by Mr. Vaughan convicting a man named Borgia. - Mr. E. D. Lewis addressed the meeting at great length on the points of constitutional law that were to be raised in the case. - A letter was read from Sir Charles Russell, Q.C., expressing his doubts as to whether the question of the right of meeting would be settled by the case. Letters were also read from Professor Stuart and others expressing sympathy with the object of the meeting.
The Whitechapel murders are once more attracting attention here. Our papers contain full accounts of the latest tragedy, which again recalls some similar murders out West; but nothing in the history of American crime can, for special and particular horror, be said to outmatch the East-end butcheries. Those of our people who watch these gruesome records are disappointed that the police have not experimented with bloodhounds; not that American detectives believe in them for London, but on account of the excitement raised in England as to the use of dogs whenever another crime was committed in Whitechapel. I presume the London police have found out that they are no good. Mr. Robert Pinkerton, the most famous of our detectives, says bloodhounds are all very well in the open country, but that it is absurd to think they could possibly maintain a track in a crowded city like London. As to the latest murder, Mr. Pinkerton thinks the culprit is insane, and there have been several cases in America of persons having a mania for committing murder. Talking to a journalist upon the subject he expresses a high opinion of "the Scotland-yard detective bureau," and says it is a very easy matter in a great city for a man to commit murders of the Dorset-street type and elude arrest for a time. The only suggestion he makes is that the police should institute inquiries at the insane asylums and find out if any patient suffering from homicidal mania has been released as cured or has contrived to escape.
In the House of Commons, yesterday, the Home Secretary announced, in answering a question by Mr. Conybeare, that Sir Charles Warren, Chief Commissioner of Police, had tendered his resignation, which had been accepted. In reply to Mr. Graham, the right hon. gentleman stated that reasons why the present and preceding Governments had abandoned the practice of offering rewards in cases of murder. At the same time he promised to give careful consideration to the question whether the peculiar circumstances of the Whitechapel tragedies would not justify a departure from the existing rule. The House subsequently went into Committee of Supply, and several Civil Service votes were disposed of.
Last night at a meeting of members of various metropolitan Liberal and Radical organisations a resolution was passed expressing satisfaction at the resignation of Sir Charles Warren, and urging that the appointment should not in future be held by a military man.
Dr. Macdonald, coroner, held an inquest at Shoreditch Town Hall, yesterday, touching the death of Mary Janet Kelly, whose body was found, most horribly mutilated, in a room in Miller-court, Dorset-street, last Friday morning. Among the witnesses called was John M'Carthy, landlord and neighbour of the deceased. He said he last saw her late on the night before the murder; she was then accompanied by a man, of whom the witness gave a minute description, saying he should know him if he saw him again. Another neighbour, a woman, deposed to hearing a suppressed cry of "Oh, murder!" about half-past three or a quarter to four on Friday morning, but, this being no unusual exclamation in that region, she did not take particular notice. Caroline Maxwell, on the other hand, swore that she twice saw the deceased between eight and nine on Friday morning, on the last occasion talking with a man. Sarah Lewis said she was dozing in a friend's house in Miller-court, when, about four o'clock on Friday morning, she heard a female loudly calling "Murder!" but as there was only one scream she took no notice. After other evidence, including that of the divisional surgeon, the jury returned a verdict of wilful murder against some person or persons unknown.
REPORT had already anticipated the Home Secretary's announcement yesterday afternoon of Sir CHARLES WARREN'S resignation; but the official confirmation of the rumour appeared nevertheless to take the House a little by surprise. Mr. MATTHEWS' answer to the question addressed to him on the subject was brevity itself. "The Chief Commissioner did," he said, "on the 8th instant tender his resignation to her Majesty's Government, and that resignation has been accepted." We have yet to learn what has passed between the Minister and the retiring officer previously to his taking this decisive step, but in the absence of specific information conjecture need not wander very far afield. It has been
pretty obvious for some while past that the relations between the Home Secretary and the late Chief Commissioner had become strained. It was understood that the reorganisation of an important department of police was contemplated, and Mr. MATTHEWS has now expressly admitted that he has for some time "had the whole system under consideration, with a view," he somewhat vaguely adds, "of introducing any improvement that may be suggested." Nothing, therefore, is more probable than that the Home Secretary and Sir CHARLES WARREN have found themselves irreconcilably at odds on some important point in the work of reconstruction, and that in these circumstances the latter has found it impossible to retain his post. We are not at all prepared to admit that his retirement will dispose of all existing complaints as to the recent management of this department of our administration; but, at the same time, we cannot affect to conceal our opinion that the step will be welcomed by the public. The universal respect in which Sir CHARLES WARREN is personally held as a zealous and conscientious servant of the State has delayed only, and not averted, the final and general recognition of the fact that he was signally unfitted for the office which he has just vacated. He quits it without having forfeited any of that esteem which is due to every man who has done his honest best in the discharge of unsuitable and uncongenial functions, and, indeed, he may even be said to carry with him the sympathy which may be fairly reserved for a worthy and well-meaning official, whose inevitable failure reflects far more discredit on those who selected him for his office than on himself. It was no fault of his that he was lacking in the traditions and training, the temperament and habits of mind which go indispensably to the making of a Chief of Police. The fault lies with the Minister who, in the teeth of the most conclusive official experience, based upon a record extending over a long series of years, and in defiance of advice whose soundness ought to have been patent to any man of ordinary judgement, persisted in selecting him for a post which a soldier, considered merely as a soldier, is and always must be incompetent to fill.
How clearly these considerations were brought before the late Government at the time of Sir CHARLES WARREN'S appointment, and how urgently they were pressed upon her Majesty's advisers, a mere reference to our own columns will suffice to show. Seventeen years earlier, indeed, at the period of Colonel HENDERSON'S selection for the succession to Sir RICHARD MAYNE, we had insisted on the essential unfitness of a military officer for the post in question, and had pointed out the qualifications, altogether lacking to Sir CHARLES WARREN'S estimable predecessor as to himself, which a Chief Commissioner of Police should possess "Only one sort of previous training," we then said, "could qualify a man for the work of controlling a protective and detective force, and it is that which has been acquired by a man before whom the daily life of the thief and murderer is passing constantly in review." This, we went on to observe, was an advantage which had never fallen to the lot of Colonel HENDERSON. Besides being a military man, whose natural bent would be towards military arrangements, his previous training had kept him out of the Metropolis; and, unless appearances were glaringly deceptive and he proved to be gifted with the singular power of reversing the habits of a lifetime, we prophesied that his appointment would prove "a conspicuous failure." The event showed that our forecast of the future had been correct, and when Colonel HENDERSON placed his resignation in the hands of the Government we took occasion to remind them of the complete fulfilment of our predictions, and earnestly cautioned them against a repetition of their predecessors' mistake. We invited them to revert to the original and eminently sound conception of a Chief Commissioner which was present to the mind of Sir ROBERT PEEL, in establishing the police force, and strenuously urged them to give its due importance to the civil element in the qualifications of the person whom they might select for the vacant office. "The man," we wrote, "who succeeds Sir EDMUND HENDERSON should, with some at least of the valuable qualities which that official possessed, unite the special training and experience which he lacked from the outset, and which he never adequately supplied." Such was the advice which two years ago we tendered for the second time to the advisers of the Crown, and for the second time it was disregarded. Their choice fell upon the gallant officer who, after a career of unexampled brevity at Scotland-yard, has just tendered his resignation; and we need not now ask how far that appointment resembled and how far it differed from the extremely infelicitous selection of the Government that held power in 1869. It is not too much to say that Sir CHARLES WARREN was a simple "replica" of Sir EDMUND HENDERSON. There were the same military antecedents in both cases, and in both the same total absence of all those civil qualifications, all that intimate acquaintance with the Metropolis and its inhabitants, all that familiarity with the haunts and habits, the works and ways of the criminal classes, which are an essential condition of the proper performance of a Chief Constable's work. And, the two appointments being substantially identical, so, naturally, were their results. Sir CHARLES WARREN'S appointment has repeated the "conspicuous failure" of Colonel HENDERSON'S; and the second fiasco has only differed from the first in being somewhat more patently disastrous, and, owing to accidental circumstances, a good deal more speedily demonstrated.
And now, we think, we have a right to inquire whether the Government intend for the third time to set at nought the teachings of experience, and to shut their eyes to the plain necessities of the case. We are entitled to ask whether they again propose to select a Chief Commissioner who not only possess none of the qualifications now so conclusively indicated by the lessons of the past for the vacant office, but is, on the other hand, wedded, by lifelong use and wont, to habits of mind and methods of procedure which are positively opposed to the efficient performance of his duties. To appoint a military man at all is, it is quite evident, to run serious risk in this latter respect; but it is not necessary, or, perhaps, advisable to lay down any absolute rule which would disqualify members of any particular profession, as such, for the office of Chief Commissioner. All that need be insisted on is that Sir CHARLES WARREN'S successor, be he who he may, whether civilian or soldier, shall fulfil those requirements which the last two occupants of the post have so signally failed to satisfy. One such requirement is, as we said two years ago, to be regarded before all others as imperative. The new Commissioner of Police should at least "know his London" well. He should know it as a man knows it who has lived the best part of his life in it; who has mixed freely in all classes of its society, and who is familiar with it in its every aspect. This qualification he ought to have and must have, whatever be the others; and, of course, there are many others of high value, if not quite so indispensable, that he may add to it. Natural acuteness of observation, keen appreciation of character, sound discernment in the choice of subordinate agents, faculties of command and organisation, are all of them among the gifts which go to the making of an accomplished Chief of Police; but many of them, we quite admit, are gifts which can often be only ascribed inferentially to a newly-appointed functionary, and the certain possession of which must be left to be demonstrated by his subsequent conduct in office. The qualifications, however, to which we have given the foremost place are capable of easy ascertainment in advance. Those with whom the appointment rests can at least see to it that their nominee, if he has some of the characteristics and training of the soldier, shall possess some of the lawyer's aptitudes also; and, beyond and above all, that he shall be a thorough man of the world and a Londoner to the backbone, with a proper pride in his citizenship of no mean city, and a genuine enthusiasm for his work. Unfortunately we have too little reason to be satisfied with the official conduct of the Minister on whom devolves, in the first degree, at any rate, the responsibility of selection. Sir CHARLES WARREN'S resignation has removed an unsuccessful Chief Commissioner, but he leaves behind him an incapable Home Secretary. We have yet to see whether Mr. MATTHEWS is a better hand at discerning capacity in others than in displaying it on his own account. The bad workman is proverbially said to complain of his tools; and there certainly seems to be some presumption against his displaying judgement in the choice of them. It remains to be seen whether this presumption is one which the Home Secretary will succeed in rebutting, if, indeed, he is to be allowed the chance.
There was a slightly increased attendance of members in the House of Commons yesterday, more than 300 being in their places. Mr. Goschen and Mr. Balfour, however, were absent from the Ministerial Bench, and the Opposition again lacked the presence of Mr. Gladstone and Sir William Harcourt. Great interest was manifested in the questions asked and answered as to the Metropolitan police arrangements, and it is understood that had not the Home Secretary announced the acceptance of Sir Charles Warren's resignation, a motion for adjournment, in order to call attention to the matter, would have been proposed from the Conservative side of the House by Mr. Gent-Davis, and supported by the Radical and Parnellite members. It is pointed out that, although the Chief Commissioner's resignation was tendered on Thursday last, no mention of the fact was made at the sitting of the House on Friday, and it is assumed that the delay in acceptance was due to the ultimate decision being reserved for Saturday's Cabinet Council.
The announcement of Sir Charles Warren's resignation came as a surprise to the members of the House of Commons, many of whom, in speaking of the incident, strangely confounded the name of Mr. Matthews at first with that of the Chief Commissioner, it being universally assumed that the Home Secretary would be the earlier to resign his post.
A question will, it is understood, be addressed to-day to the Home Secretary with a view to elicit the exact reason for Sir Charles Warren's resignation as Chief Commissioner of Police. Sir Charles will continue to fulfil the duties of his office until a successor is appointed.
MARLBOROUGH-STREET. - DISGRACEFUL TRICK. William Avenell, a chimney sweep, of Adam and Eve-court, and Frederick William Moore, a carver and gilder, of Carlisle-street, were charged with being disorderly and with assaulting Henry Edward Leeke, and oil and colour man, in Berners-street. - The prosecutor, a little man, deposed that about five o'clock on Saturday afternoon he went into a public-house in Berners-street, and there was accosted by several men. The two prisoners followed him out, accused him of being "Jack the Ripper," and told him they were detectives in private clothes and should arrest him. They dragged him through several streets into Newman-street, treating him in a most brutal manner, and when he appealed to the passers by to assist him the men told them he was "Jack the Ripper" and they were detectives taking him to the station. He told them that he had delivered some oil at 62, Berners-street, and they said they would see whether his statement was correct. When they got to the house he sprang away from them, rushed downstairs, and hid himself. The prisoners followed him, and Avenell, entering the kitchen, where about fourteen young ladies were at tea, told them that "Jack the Ripper" was in the house and that he was a detective and had come to arrest him. The young ladies screamed, and Avenell came and fetched him out, when the girls exclaimed, "Why, that's our little oilman." Madame Munz, who lived there, came down, and Avenell told her that they were detectives, but he had no authority with him, and that statement he also repeated to the policeman who locked the defendants up on a charge of assaulting him (Leake). He was quite ill from the treatment he had received. He denied that he at first said his name was Smith, and that he was drunk and in serious trouble. - Madame Munz, the occupier of the house, and one of her apprentices deposed to the prisoner and two other men coming in, and to Avenell stating that there was a strange man there and that he was a detective. They also saw him seize Leeke, whom Mrs. Munz had known for years as her oilman, by the throat and drag him out of the house. - The constable in the case stated that Avenell told him that Leeke was "Jack the Ripper," and as the police would not do their duty he was doing it for them. Moore came out of the house and tried to run away. Leeke was quite sober, but Avenell was not. - The defence was that when Leeke entered the public-house someone remarked "Here's a funny little man. Perhaps he's 'Jack the Ripper.' Avenell asked him what was the matter with him, and he said he was in trouble, that his name was Smith, that he was a tin-plate worker, and lived at 62, Berners-street. Avenell said he would see him home and left with Moore and a man named Bennett for that purpose. Avenell knew that Leeke had no right in No. 62, so when he ran in there he gave an alarm, but did not say that he was a detective or that Leeke was "Jack the Ripper." Moore stood on the stairs and said it was time to leave off the foolish joke and Bennett went away. - Mr. Hannay remanded the men for a week, to give the prosecutor an opportunity of commencing a civil action and to enable the police to charge Avenell with the offence of pretending to be a detective.
CLERKENWELL. - CHECKING FALSE CONFESSIONS. Charles Thomas, aged 51, a labourer, was brought up for being drunk and disorderly in Crowndale-road, St. Pancras. - Police-constable 550 Y said the prisoner, whom he saw drunk and surrounded by a crowd of persons early on Sunday morning, kept shouting out "I'm Jack the Ripper." - The accused, in defence, simply said he was sorry. - Mr. Bros sentenced Thomas to fourteen days' imprisonment, with hard labour, and intimated that he should send every man to prison, without the option of a fine, who was brought before him for shouting out in the street that he was the Whitechapel murderer.
WORSHIP-STREET. - STABBING IN BETHNAL-GREEN. - William Francis Schuler, 30, baker, living in Canrobert-street, Bethnal-green, was brought up for stabbing Susan Schuler, his wife, in the back with a knife. - The wife, who gave her evidence with great reluctance, crying the whole time, said that on Saturday night her husband returned home the worse for drink, and abused her at supper. They had words, and "perhaps" she angered him. He raised his hand to strike her, and she ran away. He stabbed her in the back. He had a knife in his hand cutting bread and cheese. She did not think he picked it up for the purpose. Medical evidence showed that the wound was not deep. - The magistrate (Mr. Montagu Williams, Q.C.) committed the prisoner for trial. -- George Birmingham, 21, costermonger, living in Mount-street, Bethnal-green, was charged on remand with being concerned with others in stabbing John Hall, a labourer, in the neck. The prisoner has been a fortnight under remand, the prosecutor being unable to attend. The latter's story was that when in the street at midnight, on Saturday, the 27th ult., he was struck, challenged to fight, knocked down and kicked, and became insensible. He only recognised the prisoner as being called to "Let it go, Bogey." - Other witnesses said that a cry was raised during the attack on the prosecutor, "Now 'chiv'" - meaning knife. After the prisoner ran away a knife was picked up and handed to the constable who was assisting the prosecutor into a cab, but no evidence was given as to its being the defendant's knife. It was said that the accused was a member of the "White's-row gang." - Medical evidence showed that, in consequence of the injury to prosecutor's neck, paralysis of the left arm had developed, and was likely to be permanent. - The prisoner, who said he was innocent, was committed for trial.