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LONDON. SATURDAY, 8 SEPTEMBER, 1888.
WHITECHAPEL IS PANIC-STRICKEN AT ANOTHER FIENDISH CRIME.
A FOURTH VICTIM OF THE MANIAC.
London lies to-day under the spell of a great terror. A nameless reprobate - half beast, half man - is at large, who is daily gratifying his murderous instincts on the most miserable and defenceless classes of the community. There can be no shadow of a doubt now that our original theory was correct, and that the Whitechapel murderer, who has now four, if not five, victims to his knife, is one man, and that man a murderous maniac. There is another Williams in our midst. Hideous malice, deadly cunning, insatiable thirst for blood - all these are the marks of the mad homicide. The ghoul-like creature who stalks through the streets of London, stalking down his victim like a Pawnee Indian, is simply drunk with blood, and he will have more. The question is, what are the people of London to do? Whitechapel is garrisoned with police and stocked with plain-clothes men. Nothing comes of it. The police have not even a clue. They are in despair at their utter failure to get so much as a scent of the criminal.
Now we have a moral to draw and a proposal to make. We have carefully investigated the causes of the miserable and calamitous breakdown of the police system. They are chiefly two: (1) the inefficiency and timidity of the detective service, owing to the manner in which Sir Charles has placed it in leading strings and forbidden it to move except under instructions; (2) the inadequate local knowledge of the police. Our reporters have discovered that the Whitechapel force knows little of the criminal haunts of the neighborhood. Now, this is a state of things which obtains in no other great city in the world but London, and is entirely due to our centralised system. In New York the local police know almost every brick in every den in the district, and every felon or would-be felon who skulks behind it. In Whitechapel many of the men are new to their work, and others who have two or three years' local experience have not been trained to the special work of vigilant and ceaseless inspection of criminal quarters.
Now there is only one thing to be done at this moment, and we can talk of larger reforms when we do away with the centralised non-efficient military system which Sir Charles Warren has brought to perfection. The people of the East-end must become their own police. They must form themselves at once into Vigilance Committees. There should be a central committee, which should map out the neighborhood into districts, and appoint the smaller committees. These again should at once devote themselves to volunteer patrol work at night, as well as to general detective service. The unfortunates who are the objects of the man-monster's malignity should be shadowed by one or two of the amateur patrols. They should be cautioned to walk in couples. Whistles and a signalling system should be provided, and means of summoning a rescue force should be at hand. We are not sure that every London district should not make some effort of the kind, for the murderer may choose a fresh quarter now that Whitechapel is being made too hot to hold him.
We do not think that the police will put any obstacle in the way of this volunteer assistance. They will probably be only too glad to have their efforts supplemented by the spontaneous action of the inhabitants. But in any case, London must rouse itself. No woman is safe while this ghoul is abroad. Up, citizens, then, and do your own police work!
"Horror on horrors head accumulates" in Whitechapel. This morning the district was thrown into a panic by a fourth murder committed in an exactly similar manner to the three mysterious and unpunished crimes which have preceded it. The scene of this latest horror is Hanbury-street, hardly a stone's throw from Osborne-street and Buck's-row, where the two other victims were butchered. Indeed, through Hanbury-street on Thursday Mary Ann Nicholls' terribly-mutilated body was carried on the way to its place of burial. The fourth victim to what must be a madman's insatiable thirst for blood, is, like the other three, a poor defenceless walker of the streets. A companion identified her soon after she had been taken to the mortuary as "Dark Annie," and as she came from the mortuary gate bitterly crying said between her tears, "I knowed her; I kissed her poor cold face."
The scene of the murder is the house 29, Hanbury-street - a packing-case maker's. The body was actually found in the back yard, just behind the back door, mutilated in an even more ghastly manner than the woman Nicholls. As in her case, the throat was cut, and the body ripped open, but the horror was intensified by the fact that
It seems that the crime was committed soon after five. At that hour the woman and the man, who in all probability was her murderer, were seen drinking together in the Bells, Brick-lane. But though the murder was committed at this late hour, the murderer - acting, as in the other cases, silently and stealthily - managed to make his escape.
The horror and alarm this fourth crime - following so quickly on the others - has excited in the neighborhood is inexpressible. Women and men, too, with frightened whitened faces, are congregated at all corners of the streets, so panic-stricken that they hardly dare to speak above a whisper.
The first discovery of the body was made by John Davis, living on the top floor of 29, Hambro-street, in the yard of which the body was found. Mr. Davis was crossing the yard at a quarter to six when he saw a horrible-looking mass lying in the corner, partly concealed by the steps. He instantly made for the station and notified the police without touching the body. Meantime Mrs. Richardson, an old lady sleeping on the first floor front, was aroused by her grandson Charles Cooksley, who looked out of one of the back windows and screamed that there was a dead body in the corner.
makes this murder even more horrible than any of its predecessors. She was lying on her back with her legs outstretched. Her throat was cut from ear to ear. Her clothes were pushed up above her waist and her legs bare. The abdomen was exposed, the woman having been ripped up from groin to breast-bone as before. Not only this, but the viscera had been pulled out and scattered in all directions, the heart and liver being placed behind her head, and the remainder along her side. No more horrible sight ever met a human eye, for she was covered with blood, and lying in a pool of it, which hours afterwards had not soaked into the ground.
The yard is a small one, square in shape, with a 4ft. fence on either side. The fence is old and rotten. There is a woodshed at the back. The yard is roughly and irregularly paved with stones of all sizes and shapes rammed into the ground. The back door of the house which leads into the yard is a plain board frame, with no lock on it. Two stone steps are just outside, and in the narrow space between these steps and the fence the body lay. It was evident at a glance that the murder had been
The enormous quantity of blood and the splash on the fence, coupled with the total absence of stains elsewhere, made this clear. It was also clear that the man had decoyed the poor woman into the yard, and murdered her as she lay where she was found. The passage through the house by which the yard was reached is 25ft. long and 3ft. wide. Its floor is bare, and nobody can pass along it without making some noise. The murderer and his victim failed to awaken anybody, however, though people were sleeping only a few feet away. Both front and back door are open all night, and there was no difficulty in reaching the yard. There was a story that a bloody knife had been found in the yard, but this was not true. The only unusual thing about the yard excepting the dead woman was the fact that
of the shed had been broken.
Not a sound seems to have been made by the woman when attacked. Mrs. Bell, an old lady who lives next door, sleeps by an open window, not 20ft. from the spot, and is certain that no noise was made as she sleeps very lightly. The probability is that the woman by five o'clock was stupidly drunk, as she was well on when Donovan, the deputy, last saw her. In this state she could have been easily kept silent until she was unable from loss of blood to speak.
The people, and even the police, were so excited that all sorts of rumours were flying about. The woman living next door declared that this morning there was written on the door of No. 29, "This is the fourth, I will murder sixteen more and then give myself up." There was no basis for this story, however, there being no chalk mark on the door except "29."
As soon as the murder was known there came a rush of people from the market and the houses, and in charge of an inspector the body was removed to the mortuary.
The murder is certainly the fourth of a series by the same fiendish hand. The blood-crazy man or beast that haunts Whitechapel has done his latest work on the same line as its predecessors. Mystery of the deepest kind envelopes it. At a quarter to five the body was not in the yard, Mrs. Richardson's son John, a man of 33, having passed through the yard at that time to see if the cellar door was safe.
the woman was murdered in open daylight. She was murdered where she was found, because she could not have been carried into the yard except by the passage-way from the street which is open all night, but the street at that time was filled with market people. There is no blood except in the yard corner, and a huge splash on the fence, like the spurt from an artery.
Chief Inspector West and Inspector Chandler courteously gave a Star reporter the meagre particulars of which the police are in possession. The woman's name, as far as they can gather, is Annie Siffey, and her age is about 45. She is five feet high, has fair brown wavy hair, blue eyes, and strangely enough, like Mary Ann Nicholls, has two teeth missing. One peculiarity of her features by which the police hope to get a more positive and complete identity, is a large flat kind of nose. Her clothing, like that of most of her class who ply their trade in this quarter of London, was old and dirty, and nothing was found in her pockets except part of an envelope bearing
For the last nine months she has been sleeping at night, or early in the morning rather, at a common lodging-house at 35, Dorset-street, Spitalfields, and she was there as recently as two o'clock this morning eating some potatoes. She had not, however, the money to pay for her bed, and at two o'clock she left with the remark to the keeper of the place, "I'll soon be back again; I'll soon get the money for my doss," almost the very words Mary Ann Nicholls used to the companion she met in Whitechapel-road, at half-past two last Friday morning.
Our representative went to the Bell, in Brick-lane, where, as gossip goes, "Dark Annie" was seen with the man supposed to be her murderer. The barmaid said she opened the place at five o'clock, as is customary on a Saturday morning, as Spitalfields Market is in the near vicinity. She was too busy almost to notice whom she served. She might have served the woman; indeed she had been told by those who knew her that she had, but she had no recollection of it, and certainly could not say whether the unfortunate creature was accompanied by a man.
Another report says: - The victim in this case was discovered about a quarter to four o'clock this morning lying in a backyard at the foot of a passage leading into the lodging-house, 29, Hanbury-street, formerly Old Brown's-lane, Spitalfields. The house is occupied by a Mrs. Emilia Richardson, who lets it out to various lodgers, and it seems that the door which admits into this passage, at the foot of which lies the yard where the body was found, is always open for the convenience of the lodgers. A Mr. and Mrs. Davis occupy the upper story (the house consisting of three stories) and as Mr. Davis was going down to work at the time mentioned he found a woman lying on her back close up to the flight of steps leading into the yard. Her throat was cut open in a fearful manner, so deep, in fact, that the murderer, evidently
from the body, tied a handkerchief round it so as to keep it on. It was also found that her stomach had been completely ripped open, and her bowels, heart, and other entrails were lying at her side. The fiendish work was completed by the murderer tying part of the entrails round the poor victim's neck and head. The place on which she was lying was found covered with clots of thick blood. Davis, the lodger, who found the body, immediately communicated with the police at Commercial-street Station, and Inspector Chandler and several constables arrived on the scene in a short time, when they found the woman in the condition described.
The above sketch shows the localities of the four murders. No. 1 shown in the bottom left hand corner indicates the spot where a woman unidentified was found murdered by having a stick or iron instrument thrust into her body. The crime passed off very quietly. It was put down as a drunken freath of some of the nameless ruffians who swarm about Whitechapel.
No. 2 was the crime of Osborne-street. The scene was laid near the first murder, and a woman was found stabbed in 36 places, lying outside George's-buildings. The impression made by this affair soon died away. The crime was a horrible one, but not a witness was called at the inquest who could throw any light on the matter. The excitement died from sheer lack of fact to support any theory.
No. 3, the Buck's-row Murder, the scene of which is indicated by a cross in the top right-hand corner, is still too fresh in its horrid details in the public mind to need recapitulation. It has been closely followed by
No. 4, shown by the cross at the top left-hand corner is the crime which has shocked all London to-day.
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FACTS ABOUT THE VICTIM.
The woman's name is Annie Chapman, alias Sieve. She comes from Windsor, and has friends residing at Vauxhall. Her home was a lodging-house at 35, Dorset-street, in Whitechapel. Her husband was a pensioner, who allowed her 10s. per week, but he died a twelvemonth ago, and, the pension ceasing, she has since earned her living in the streets. She lived for a time with a man named Sieve. She was identified at the mortuary at half-past seven this morning by Frederick Simmons, a young man living in the same house with her. She lay on an operating table exactly as she had been brought in, the hands of one of the constables being dyed with blood. Simmons identified her without difficulty, first by her handkerchief and then by her face, and said that
Frederick Stevens, another young man living at 35, Dorset-street, states that deceased did not leave the house until one o'clock. He had drunk a pint of beer with her at half-past twelve. She was not very well, having been in the casual ward of the Whitechapel Infirmary from Wednesday night till Friday morning. Her injuries were due to a quarrel last Monday with another woman, who kicked her in the breast, making a painful wound. As she lay in the dead-house, where Simmons identified her, she was a stout woman of fair complexion. Her age is forty-eight. She wore a white handkerchief bordered with red, a black jacket, an old black hat, and old laced-up boots.
The only clue of any value thus far is furnished by Mrs. Fiddymont, wife of the proprietor of the Prince Albert publichouse, better known as the "Clean House," at the corner of Brushfield and Stewart streets, half a mile from the scene of the murder. Mrs. Fiddymont states that at seven o'clock this morning she was standing in the bar talking with another woman, a friend, in the first compartment. Suddenly there came into the middle compartment a man whose rough appearance frightened her. He had on a brown stiff hat, a dark coat and no waistcoat. He came in with his hat down over his eyes, and with his face partly concealed, asked for half a pint of four ale. She drew the ale, and meanwhile looked at him through the mirror at the back of the bar. As soon as he saw the woman in the other compartment watching him he turned his back, and got the partition between himself and her. The thing that struck Mrs. Fiddymont particularly was the fact that there were
This, taken in conjunction with his appearance, caused her uneasiness. She also noticed that his shirt was torn. As soon as he had drunk the ale, which he swallowed at a gulp, he went out. Her friend went out also to watch him.
Her friend is Mrs. Mary Chappell, who lives at 28, Stewart-street, near by.
and is more particular. When the man came in the expression of his eyes caught her attention, his look was so startling and terrifying. It frightened Mrs. Fiddymont so that she requested her to stay. He wore a light blue check shirt, which was torn badly, into rags in fact, on the right shoulder. There was a narrow streak of blood under his right ear, parallel with the edge of his shirt. There was also dried blood between the fingers of his hand. When he went out she slipped out the other door, and watched him as he went towards Bishopsgate-street. She called Joseph Taylor's attention to him, and Joseph Taylor followed him.
Joseph Taylor is a builder at 22, Stewart-street. He states that as soon as his attention was attracted to the man
He walked rapidly, and came alongside him, but did not speak to him. The man was rather thin, about 5ft. 8in. high, and apparently between 40 and 50 years of age. He had a shabby genteel look, pepper and salt trousers which fitted badly, and dark coat. When Taylor came alongside him the man glanced at him, and Taylor's description of the look was, "His eyes were as wild as a hawk's." Taylor is a perfectly reliable man, well-known throughout the neighbourhood.
The man walked, he says, holding his coat together at the top. He had a nervous and frightened way about him. He wore a ginger-colored moustache and had short sandy hair. Taylor ceased to follow him, but watched him as far as "Dirty Dick's," in Halfmoon-street, where he became lost to view. Taylor says he has seen this man coming out of a lodging-house in Thrall-street. He thinks that he is a foreigner.
The proprietor of the Ten Bells is Mr. E. Waldron. The house stands on the corner of Spitalfields Market, and opens early for the convenience of those who bring their goods from the country. One of the assistants gave some information to our reporter with reference to the rumor that the murdered woman was seen there this morning. He said: A woman did call in here about five o'clock. She was poorly dressed, having no bodice to her skirt. She was middle-aged. She just had something to drink, when a man called for her. He just popped his head in the door and retired immediately afterwards. He had on a little skull cap, and was, as far as I could see, without a coat. But he gave me no opportunity of seeing him. I think, however, I should know his face again, and I think I would also know the woman. The description of the woman corresponds to a certain extent, especially with regard to age, hair, and clothing, with that of the victim of to-day.
Timothy Donovan, deputy at the lodging-house, 35, Dorset-street, interviewed by a Star reporter, said the woman came to the place at between half-past one and a quarter to two this morning the worse for drink - in fact, she was "very drunk." She went downstairs to the common kitchen, and when the deputy went down and asked for the money for her bed, she said she had not sufficient. She came upstairs and said, "Jim, I've been in the infirmary. I'm going out. I sha'n't be long." John Edwards, the watchman, went out after her and saw her go in the direction of Brush-field.
Before she went to the lodging-house last night she had not been seen there since the Sunday before.
Last Saturday afternoon she came to the lodging-house with a man about 5ft. 6in., with a dark moustache and short beard, and dressed in the clothes of a laboring man. "He was not 'Leather Apron,' the deputy said. "Do you know him?" asked the Star man. "Yes, I ought to," was the answer; "I chucked him down the stairs; he tried to murder a woman here."
Coming back to the new horror, Donovan said the man who came to the place with the woman Sivvey on Saturday had come with her to the lodging-house every Saturday for the last six weeks. He used to stop with her at the lodging-house till Monday morning. The woman had spoken about him, and said he was a pensioner.
The other women in the lodging-house say that from what she had said at different times Dark Annie was well connected. She used to do crochet work, and, from her conversation it was evident she was a woman of some education. Her husband seems to have been a soldier; but is now dead, and until lately the woman was in receipt of 10s. a week, which the other women supposed was a pension. But lately this allowance has been stopped, and since then she has been more frequently in want of money.
The air of Whitechapel is thick with murders and rumors of murder. One rumor, which was very general, and which in the prevailing terror found ready acceptance, was that another woman had this morning been found murdered at the back of the London Hospital, but happily it proved to be unfounded.
It being almost positively certain that the murderer of Dark Annie is the murderer of Mary Ann Nicholls, a Star reporter went to the Bethnal-green police-station to inquire whether the new murder threw any light on the other. Inspector Helston was "very busy," but Sergeant Godley showed himself. All the information that could be got, however, was that the scene of the new crime "is just out of our district." Our representative suggested that, as a matter of course, the two cases would be investigated together, but the Inspector didn't seem at all sure about this.
Frederick Simpson, who lived at the lodging-house, 35, Dorset-street, says he has known the woman well for two years. She parted from her husband (who died a year since) about two years and a half ago, and since that time has got a living by walking the streets. In conversation with Simpson she had mentioned the fact that she had a son - a little boy - in a school at Windsor, and a daughter 14 years old travelling with some performing troupe in France. She has relatives at Vauxhall, where she went last night, "to get some money," as she told the other lodgers at "Dorset-chambers." "They gave me 5d.," she said.
The excitement in Spitalfields is now rendering the people almost frantic. Two men were arrested for trifling offences this morning, and on each occasion a maddened crowd ran after the police shouting, "The murderer's caught!" Another man, injured in a quarrel and carried to the police-station on a stretcher, received similar attention, the crowd fairly mobbing the station and declining to disperse.
A man for whom there has been a warrant out for some time was arrested. In an instant the news spread like wild-fire. From every street, from every court, from the market stands, from the public-houses, rushed forth men and women, all trying to get at the unfortunate captive, declaring he was "one of the gang," and they meant to lynch him. Thousands gathered, and the police and a private detective had all their work to prevent the man being torn to pieces. The police barrack doors were closed the moment their prisoner had been brought in, and a number of constables did duty outside to prevent the mad onrush of the furious crowd. The inspector in charge informed our reporter the man was arrested for an assault on the police. The crowd sighed at hearing the news, but were not persuaded that the person in question had not something to do with the murder.
At half-past twelve there was a rumor that an arrest had been made, and that the prisoner had been taken to the Bethnal-green police-station. A Star reporter drove at once to the police-office, and a large and excited crowd lent confirmation to the report. The inspector on duty, however, stated in answer to inquiries that two men had been brought there "merely for their own protection." A "hue and cry," he said, had been raised in Whitechapel-road, and the mob which quickly gathered threatened to lynch the men, who to escape violence got on a tram. For their protection, however, it had been necessary to bring them to the police-station.
"Is there any suspicion against the men?" our reporter asked.
The answer was a negative shake of the head.
"Can I see the men?" asked our representative.
"Oh, dear, no!" answered the inspector.
"But then," our reporter expostulated, "if the men are merely brought here for their own protection, they are not prisoners, and if they are not prisoners surely I can see them."
"You can't see them," was the inspector's emphatic answer.
"Well, are they prisoners?" persisted the Star man.
"I have told you, sir, all I can tell you," was the curt reply, which left our reporter to draw his own conclusion.
John Richardson, of 2, John-street, E.C., said to a Star reporter: - I am a porter in Spitalfields Market. I always go round to mother's (Mrs. Richardson, 29, Hanbury-street) on market mornings just to see that everything is right in the back-yard, where her underground packing-case workshops are. The place was burgled a short time back. This morning, as near as I know, it was ten minutes to five o'clock when I entered the backyard of 29. There was nobody there. Of that I am sure. I heard in the market at 6.20 a woman had been found murdered at mother's, and went round and saw the body. The police, by the doctor's order, took possession on my leather apron and knife that were on the premises, and also a box of nails, as well as three pills found near the body.
It is a singular fact that only a few steps from the house where the woman was found is - as in the Buck's-row case - one of Barber's slaughterhouses.
For several hours past the occupants of the adjoining house have been charging an admission fee of one penny to people anxious to view the spot where the body was found. Several hundreds of people have availed themselves of this opportunity, though all that can be seen are a couple of packing cases from beneath which is the stain of a blood track.
"A Whitechapel Workman" writes: - Why do the police not employ bloodhounds to trace the murderer? He could not commit such a crime without being covered with the blood of his victim, and this would help the dogs to trace him. Bloodhounds were used to trace out Fish, the murderer, some years ago with success; but that, of course, was before our police force was presided over by Sir Charles Warren.
MOTHERS-IN-LAW. - The editor of The Star is a bold man, but he shrinks from the task "Jack" would impose on him.