22 September, 1888
(SUBJECT OF ILLUSTRATION.)
(SUBJECT OF ILLUSTRATION.)
The detective officers continued their investigations on Sunday, but up to a late hour that night no arrest had been made, neither is there any immediate prospect of an arrest being effected. The public of the neighbourhood continue to make statements, which are committed to writing at Commercial-street station, and in several instances the police have been made cognisant of what the informants consider to be suspicious movements of individuals whose appearance is supposed to tally with that of the man wanted. Every "clue" given by the public in their zeal to assist the police has been followed up, but without success, and the lapse of time, it is feared, will lessen the chances of discovering the perpetrator of the crimes.
The man who was arrested on Friday night in the neighbourhood of Flower and Dean-street is named Edward M Kenna, and he gave an address of 15, Brick-lane, Whitechapel. Being slightly built, about five feet eight inches in height, having a head of hair somewhat inclined to be "sandy", with beard and moustache of the same colour, and wearing a skull-cap, it was concluded that he might be the man seen by Mrs. Lloyd and her daughter in Heath-street, Commercial-road. M Kenna also resembled the man seen by the potman at the Ten Bells public house to put his head inside the door and angrily call a woman out of the bar on the evening of the murder. He was also like the man followed by Taylor into Bishopsgate-street from the Prince Albert after the murder. Mrs. Lloyd and her daughter, therefore, were summoned to the Commercial-street Police-station on Saturday morning, where she made a complete statement of what she had seen, and indignantly denied much that had been imputed to her. She said she was standing near her front door, and her daughter was sitting on the steps, when some boys chased a man up the street. The man crossed the road, went up to her daughter, looked her in the face, and then continued his course without saying a word. She could not say that he had a knife, but he kept one hand behind his back, and appeared to be holding something in it. Mrs. Lloyd was then fronted with M Kenna, but failed to recognise him as the man she had seen. In the afternoon a detective made inquiries at 15, Brick-lane, a common lodging house, and it was found beyond doubt that M Kenna slept there on Friday night; accordingly he was liberated. Inquiries were also prosecuted regarding the man who was arrested in Holloway, with the result that he too, was discharged, it being maintained that he was a harmless lunatic. Attention was also directed to another incident that had been reported. About ten o'clock on Friday night a man passed through the Tower Subway to the Middlesex side, and said to the caretaker, "Have you caught any of the Whitechapel murderers yet?" He then produced a knife about a foot in length with a curved blade, and remarked "This will do for them." He was followed, but ran away, and was lost sight of. The police have obtained a description of the man, but attach no importance to the statement. The explanations of his proceedings furnished by Edward Stanley, the pensioner, have thrown no light upon the crime. They are regarded, however, as affording no ground for connecting him with it in any way.
The report that in their anxiety to bring the criminal to justice the members of H Division of police had subscribed £50 to supplement the reward of £100 offered by Mr. Samuel Montague, M.P., is unfounded. The police of this division entertain hopes that the private offer of a reward of £100 may lead many of those who are frequenters of the common lodging-houses in the neighbourhood, and have hitherto been reluctant to give information, to come forward and give evidence which may materially facilitate the work of the officers engaged in unravelling the mystery. A large number of extra police and detectives have been engaged in patrolling the neighbourhood the last two or three nights.
On Saturday night a meeting of the Vigilance Committee took place at the Crown Tavern, 74, Mile End-road, for the purpose of considering what steps should be taken to aid the police in the search for the murderer. In the absence of Mr. Lusk, the chairman, Mr. Aarons, the proprietor of the tavern, was voted to the chair, and in opening the proceedings, said that he had great pleasure in announcing that Mr. Spencer Charrington, of the brewery adjacent, had, with his usual liberality, responded to the appeal made to him on behalf of his fellow creatures. He had sent a cheque for £5, and he would not have done that unless he had been convinced the amount was for a much-needed object. In announcing other subscriptions, including £5 from Mr. Lusk, and a similar amount from himself, the speaker said he had been forcible reminded, during his efforts to obtain subscriptions towards a reward for the apprehension of the murderer, of the great dissatisfaction which existed owing to the withdrawal of Government rewards for the discovery of murder; for, with one exception, every donor had expressed an opinion that it was the duty of the Government to offer a substantial reward in such cases, and many persons who were ready to lay down £100 towards any charitable object were flatly refused to subscribe to this fund on the ground that it was the imperative duty of the Scotland-yard authorities and of the Home Office to offer a pecuniary inducement to persons (not the actual murderer) to come forward and give information. He regretted to say that the police authorities had decided to offer no reward, but at the same time it was only fair to reflect that the police probably knew more about the matter than they chose to make public, and that, therefore, they considered a reward unnecessary. Time, of course, might show how the matter stood, and he trusted that the police were right in what they were doing. Mr. Rogers and other gentlemen having addressed the meeting, the proceedings were adjourned.
On Monday, Mr. Wynne E. Baxter, coroner for South-East Middlesex, resumed his inquiry at the Working Lad's Institute, Whitechapel-road, into the circumstances attending the death of Mary Ann Nicholls [Nichols], aged forty-two, wife of a machinist, who was brutally murdered in Buck's-row, Whitechapel, on August 31st. Inspector Helson attended with several officials from Scotland-yard, on behalf of the Chief Commissioner of Police - The first witness was the doctor (re-called) who said that he had examined the body since the last hearing, and had found an old soar on the forehead.
Emma Green, of New Cottage, Buck's-row, a widow, said that her house was situated next to the one where the deceased was found. Previous to the day of the murder she went to bed about eleven o'clock at night, her three children going before. At about four o'clock in the morning she heard a knock at the front door, and upon opening the window she saw three or four constables, and noticing the body of a person lying on the ground. During the night neither witness nor any of her family heard any noise. - By a Juror: She was a very light sleeper, and such a noise as a scream would be sure to wake her.
Thomas Eade, signalman, in the employ of the East London Railway, said that on Saturday, September 8th, he was proceeding along Cambridge-road towards Whitechapel when he saw a man walking along who had such an extraordinary look about him that the witness could not help looking at him. He seemed to have a wooden arm. When opposite the Forester's Arms the witness saw a knife down the man's trousers. The blade was sticking out about four inches. The man appeared to be about thirty-five years of age, five foot eight inches in height, and dark. He wore a short, dark brown jacket, a pair of white overalls over a pair of dark trousers, and had on a double-peaked cap. The witness, seeing some people also watching the man, asked them to follow with him, but they refused, and the man was lost sight of. The man had the appearance of a workman. - By the Jury: He did not appear to be a very strong fellow. The witness did not see what kind of a knife it was.
Walter Perkins, of Essex Wharf, Buck's-row, said the premises were nearly opposite the gate where the deceased was found. On the night of the murder he went to bed about half-past eleven o'clock. He was awoke at various times during the night. He was called up by the police about four o'clock in the morning. The witness's wife was awake during the whole night. The night was unusually quiet, hardly a sound being heard. If the woman had called out, or had been quarreling with anybody, the witness would have been sure to have heard the noise. Several men were standing with the police when he was called up.
Alfred Mulshaw, night watchman for the Board of Works, Whitechapel district, said that he was on duty in Winthorpe-street, Buck's-row, all the night of the murder. He was watching the sewage works. Between three and four o'clock on the morning of the murder he was awake, but did not see anyone about at that time, nor did he hear any cries for assistance, or any other noise. He was stationed not very far from the place where the murdered woman was found. About twenty minutes to five o'clock a man came and said, "Old man, I think a woman has been murdered," and he immediately went round to Buck's-row, where he saw the deceased lying on the ground.
Police-constable John Thain, 96 J Division, said that his beat passed the end of Buck's-row, and he passed that end about thirty minutes before he was called, but he saw nothing. At a quarter to four a.m., about half-way down Buck's Row, he saw a lamp signal, and upon going down he saw Police-constable Neal standing beside the body of the deceased. He said, "For God's sake, Jack, go and fetch the doctor." In the gutter there was a large quantity of blood which had run off the pavement. The deceased's clothing was saturated with blood, which appeared to have run from her back. After the body had been removed to the mortuary the witness searched the neighbouring alleys and the Underground Railway, but found nothing suspicious. By a Juror: When he was called by the signal the woman was dead. The witness was not allowed to leave his beat unless called. He went to fetch his cape because he did not know where he would be sent by his inspector.
John Paul, of 30, Foster-street, Whitechapel, said he was a carman. On Friday, August 31st, he left home at about a quarter to four o'clock to go to his work in Spitalfields. He was passing up Buck's-row and saw a man standing in the road. As he got nearer the man stepped on to the pavement, and as witness was passing he touched him on the shoulder and said, "Come and look at this woman." He then saw the body of a woman lying across the gateway, dead. The night being very dark he did not notice any blood. - By the Coroner: The morning was cold. Witness and the man who had stopped him walked down Buck's-row to find a policeman, which they did in a few minutes.
Robert Mann and other witness, inmates of the Whitechapel Workhouse and keepers of the mortuary, deposed that they received the body of the deceased, which they undressed. They did not have any instructions to do that, and did not know that a doctor had to see the body. He was told by Inspector Helston [sic] to cut the clothes.
The Coroner: When the doctor was examining the body in Buck's-row a man is said to have passed. Has he been found? Inspector Helston: We have been unable to find him - Detective-sergeant Spratling deposed that he had made many inquiries in Buck's-row, but most of the people heard nothing unusual on the night in question. - The Coroner: Then, that is the whole of the evidence. Is there any possibility of obtaining any more? Inspector Helston: That I cannot say. - A Juryman: Would there have been any chance of the murderer escaping by the railway? Sergeant Spratling: I should not think so. The foreman of the jury said it was his own opinion and that of his fellow-jurymen that the Government should offer a substantial reward. If it had been a rich person that was murdered there would have been a reward of £1,000 offered; but as it was a poor unfortunate hardly any notice was taken.
The Coroner: I think you are wrong altogether, and have no right to make such statements. For some time past the offering of rewards has been discontinued, no distinction being made between rich and poor.
Inspector Helston: That is quite right, sir.
The Foreman: Nevertheless, I maintain that if a large reward had been offered in the George-yard murder the last two horrible murders would not have been committed. I am glad to see that the inhabitants are themselves going to offer a reward, and I will myself give £25.
The coroner asked the jury if they would close the inquest or have it adjourned.
The jury were of opinion that they would rather have the inquest adjourned, so as to give the police a chance to make more inquiries.
Ultimately the inquest was adjourned for a few days.
The theory that the succession of murders which have lately been committed in Whitechapel are the work of a lunatic appears to us to be by no means at present well established. We can quite understand the necessity for any murderer endeavouring to obliterate by the death of his victim his future identification as a burglar. Moreover, as far as we are aware, homicidal mania is generally characterised by the one single and fatal act, although we grant this may have been led up to by a deep-rooted series of delusions. It is most unusual for a lunatic to plan any complicated crime of this kind. Neither, as a rule, does a lunatic take precautions to escape from the consequences of his act; which data are most conspicuous in these now too celebrated cases. The truth is, that under the circumstances nobody can do more than hazard a guess as to the possible condition of mind of the perpetrator of these terrible tragedies. Until more evidence is forthcoming, it appears to us to be useless to speculate upon what can only at present be regarded as problematical.
(SUBJECT OF ILLUSTRATION.)
At five minutes after eleven o'clock on Saturday forenoon a man suddenly attacked a woman in Spitalfields-market while she was passing through. After felling her to the ground with a blow, he began kicking her and pulled out a knife. Some women who had collected, having the terrible tragedy that brought them there still fresh in their minds, on seeing the knife, raised such piercing shrieks of "Murder" that they reached the enormous crowds in Hanbury-street. Seeing the immense crowd swarming around him, the man who was the cause of the alarm made more furious efforts to reach the woman, from whom he had been separated by some persons who interfered on her behalf. He, however, threw these on one side, fell upon the woman, knife in hand, and inflicted various stabs on her head, cutting her forehead, neck and fingers before he was again pulled off. When he was again pulled off the woman lay motionless - the immense crowd took up the cry of "Murder", and the people who were on the streets raised cries of "Lynch him." At this juncture the police arrived, arrested the man, and after a while had the woman conveyed on a stretcher to the police-station in Commercial-street, where she was examined by the divisional surgeon.