27 October 1892
A Gentleman's Gardener Murders and Mutilates an Unknown Woman
THE FIEND MAKES HIS ESCAPE
A Glasgow cable says: The most horrible murder in the criminal history of this city was committed last night at West Lodge, a villa on the Albert road in Pollokshields, on the outskirts of Glasgow. A woman, still unidentified, was mutilated after the method of Jack the Ripper, was dismembered, and the pieces of her body were buried in the villa garden. McEwan, a gardener, who doubtless is guilty of the crime, has disappeared. West Lodge is one of the finest suburbs of Glasgow, and is surrounded by a garden some 125 feet deep on every side. McEwan, with the assistant gardener, McDougall, lived in a separate house, and when not busy at the villa did odd jobs in the neighborhood. He was a native of County Down, Ireland, is about 30 years old, and, although occasionally a heavy drinker, he has borne a good reputation. He is a man of great physical strength. A 6 o'clock this morning McDougall knocked at McEwan's door to awaken him, as he has done for the last six years. McEwan responded with unusual promptitude, "All right, Tom. I won't get up yet. I am tired." McDougall went away and worked in the garden until 9 o'clock, when he returned to arouse McEwan. His knocks were not answered, and he forced the door. He found the walls, ceilings, furniture and floor spattered profusely with blood. The clothes from the two beds were scattered over the floor, and were sprinkled with blood. Red finger marks streaked the side of one of the beds and the door. There was not a piece of furniture or an article of clothing which was not blood stained. McDougall ran coatless and hatless, and crying in his terror, to the police station, and told his story. After fortifying him with brandy, the police took him to West Lodge with them. From the room they followed a bloody trail to four fresh mounds in the garden. In a flower bed, from which the plants had been removed, they found, about two feet underground, the mutilated and unjointed arm of a woman. In a similar bed they uncovered the trunk. It was absolutely devoid of all internal organs. Beside the trunk was the woman's left arm, also unjointed. In another flower bed they found the missing organs and the legs, unjointed as were the arms. The trail led from this last bed to a tool house. There, under a pile of rubbish and tools, was a biscuit box containing fragments of a large saw, the teeth still dotted with flesh and blood, and several smaller pieces of the woman's body. The police say that the box was used by McEwan in transporting the limbs and the organs from his room to the garden. A search of McEwan's room revealed several razors, apparently unused for some time, and an axe recently washed, but still showing slight blood stains. McDougall was unable to give any information as to McEwan's deed or the disposition of the body, for he was working at the time on the opposite side of the house, as was shown by the fresh turned earth. He believes that when he knocked at 6 o'clock McEwan was carving up the body, as McEwan's voice indicated that he was wide awake. So far as can be judged from the mutilated remains of the body, McEwan's victim was robust, of medium height, about 30 or 35 years old. Her clothing was well made and of good material. McEwan probably took her to the house after 6 o'clock, for at that time McDougall called upon him and found him alone. This was the last time McEwan was seen by anybody near West Lodge. How and when McEwan induced the woman to enter the house, and what was his motive in the murder, are mysteries. It was reported immediately after the news of the murder got out that McEwan was Jack the Ripper, and that the time of the Ripper murders he was absent from Glasgow, but these reports are discredited. McEwan was engaged to marry a respectable girl, who is maid in a Glasgow family. The girl's mother, when she heard of the murder, supposed that he daughter was the victim, and ran to West Lodge. She could not identify the clothes as her daughter's, however, and this morning the girl was found. The police say that McEwan had little money and will soon be captured. The woman's body has been put together as well as possible, and now lies at the morgue waiting identification. It has been ascertained by the authorities that McEwan had been in the habit of receiving the woman in the house during the absence of the family. That is the extent of the information thus far learned in regard to the victim.