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 Jack the Ripper: A Suspect Guide 
This text is from the E-book Jack the Ripper: A Suspect Guide by Christopher J. Morley (2005). Click here to return to the table of contents. The text is unedited, and any errors or omissions rest with the author. Our thanks go out to Christopher J. Morley for his permission to publish his E-book.

Hyam Hyams

Suggested as a Ripper suspect by Mark King in an article for Ripperologist Magazine.

Hyam Hyams was born on 8 February 1855 too Solomon, and Fanny Hyams. Solomon was a cigar maker. In the 1881 census, Hyam Hyams is listed as living at 29 Mitre Street with his mother, brothers and sister, though there is no mention at this time of Solomon. Sometime shortly after 1881 Hyam married a woman named Rachel, and they lived at 36 New Street, Gravel Lane. The 1888 census has his mother Fanny, listed as residing at 29 Mitre Street, and in business as a fruiterer. According to the 1891 census, Fanny is listed as living at 24 Mitre Street, this was the former home of Amelia Lewis, wife of Ripper witness Joseph Hyam Levy.

On 29 December 1888 one month after the murder of Mary Kelly, Hyam Hyams was picked up by the Metropolitan police in Leman Street and taken to the Whitechapel workhouse infirmary, suffering from delirium tremens. He was released on 11 January 1889 only to be re-admitted on 15 April and sent to Colney Hatch lunatic asylum under restraint. He was discharged as 'recovered', on 30 August 1889, but on the 9 September he was delivered to the city of London lunatic asylum at Stone, Kent, as a insane person. He was sent back to Colney Hatch on 4 January 1890 where he remained until his death on 22 March 1913 from exhaustion and cardio-vascular degeneration.

Throughout his incarceration he was described as, 'Violent, threatening, noisy and destructive'. He continuously threatened other patients and members of staff, and on one occasion, when a medical officer was passing through the ward, crept up behind him and stabbed him in the neck with a makeshift knife.

His asylum records show that previously he had stabbed his wife, and on another occasion had seriously injured his mother, after striking her about the head with a hatchet. His records also note that he practiced self-abuse, and was previously addicted to drink. His wife stated that for the past 9 years he had suffered from periodical epileptic attacks, whereupon he became progressively more violent and delusional.

Hyam, who was described as 5ft 7"tall, medium build with brown hair and a large brown moustache, fits many of the eyewitness descriptions of the Ripper. And almost fit's the description of Swanson's suspect, being an insane Jew sent to Colney Hatch under restraint from the Whitechapel workhouse infirmary, who was identified by a fellow Jew, Joseph Hyam Levy.

Against Hyams being the Ripper is that Swanson unequivocally names the suspect as Kosminski, as does Anderson. Further more, Hyams did not die soon after being sent to Colney Hatch, but some 23 years later.

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