Friday, 19 October 1888
ALLEGED LETTER FROM THE MURDERER
(PRESS ASSOCIATION TELEGRAM)
From inquiries made in Mile End to-night we are enabled to give particulars of communications made to members of the Whitechapel Vigilance Committee. Mr Lusk, builder, of Alderney road, has received several letters purporting to be from the perpetrator of the Whitechapel murders, but believing them to be the product of some practical joker he has regarded them as of no consequence. On Tuesday evening, however, he received the following letter in a cardboard box, containing some fleshy substance :-
"From Hell. Mr Lusk, - Sir, I send you half the kidney I took from one woman, praesarved it for you; 'tother piece I fried and ate. It was very nice. I may send you the bloody knife that took it out if you will only wait a while longer. Signed, CATCH ME WHEN YOU CAN, MR LUSK."
The receiver was at first disposed to think that another hoax had been perpetrated, but eventually decided to take the opinion of the Vigilance Committee. This morning that body decided to ttake the contents of the cardboard box to a medical man whose surgery was near. Mr F.S. Reed, assistant to Dr. Miles, examined the contents of the box and declared the substance to be half a human kidney divided longitudinally, but in order to remove any reason for doubt, he conveyed it to Dr. Openshaw, who is pathological curator to the London Hospital Museum, who examined it, and also pronounced it to be a portion of a human kidney, a ginny kidney - that is to say, it had belonged to a person who had drunk heavily. He was further of opinon that it was the organ of a woman about 45 years of age, and that it had been taken from the body within the last three weeks. It will be within the recollection of the public that the left kidney was missing from the body of the woman Eddowes, who was murdered and mutilated in Mitre square. Mr Lusk and another member of the Vigilance Committee took the parcel to-day to Scotland Yard, but the police authorities there referred them to Leman street. At the latter place the officer who is directing the inquiries took down Mr Lusk's statement, which he considered to be of great importance, and the box and contents were left in care of the police pending further investigation. Mr Lusk states that a day or two before receiving the box he had sent to him a postcard which he now considers of sufficient importance to make public. It is in the following words:-
"Say, boss, you seem rare frightened. Guess I'd like to give you fits, but can't stop. Time enough to let you box of toys play copper games with me; but hope to see when I don't hurry too much. Good bye, boys."
The Vigilance Committee held another meeting to-night, when this new feature in the case was considered.
Contrary to expectation, the search at the new Police Office Buildings, in Whitehall was resumed late last night by means of candles. A bloodhound, one of those which had been used in the Hyde Park experiment, was brought from King street Police Station, and a staff of constables, with Inspector Peters and Marshall, were engaged for an hour and a half turning over the earth, but on the work being suspended at 10 p.m. no new discoveries had been made.
Dr. Bond has examined portion of the leg found yesterday, and believes it belongs to the trunk already in the mortuary. He also expresses his opinion that both portions of the body have been in the place six weeks.
A Woolwich correspondent says - The bloodhounds hired by Sir Charles Warren were out for practice at Tooting to-day and were lost. Telegrams this afternoon have been sent to all metropolitan police stations that if they are seen anywhere information is to be immediately sent to Scotland Yard.