FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 16, 1888
MARLBOROUGH-STREET. - WHITECHAPEL SCARE. Jane Hickie, general dealer, was brought up for being drunk and disorderly in Tottenham-court-road last night. - The evidence was that about ten o'clock a large crowd collected owing to the woman accusing a gentleman of being "Jack the Ripper." She insisted on his being taken to the station, and behaved so badly that she was obliged to be removed by force. - The prisoner, in her defence, said that a gentleman with a coat on his arm and a black bag in his hand accosted her, and asked her to accompany him into a passage. When she saw the man's face she felt so frightened that she rushed into Tottenham-court-road, where she believed she saw the man again, and asked a policeman to take him into custody for being "Jack the Ripper," but the officer would not do so. She, in consequence, became very excited, and having had a little drink, scarcely knew what she was about. - Mr. Newton ordered her to pay 10s, or go to prison for seven days, remarking that a stop must be put to scares of that kind raised without foundation.
LAMBETH. - EXTRAORDINARY CONDUCT. - John Benjamin Perryman, 40, hairdresser, living in Pennethorne-road, Peckham, was charged before Mr. Partridge with being drunk and disorderly in Old Kent-road. - On Wednesday night Detectives Leek and Reed were in the Old Kent-road, and, hearing a disturbance, went to the spot. They found the prisoner surrounded by a crowd, and it was feared he would be roughly handled, as he had declared himself to be "Jack the Ripper." The officers ascertained that when making the statement he acted in a most violent manner. He flourished his arms about and exhibited a black leather bag, about which he made some remarks. He caught hold of several females, and caused considerable alarm. The officers, after much difficulty, got the prisoner to the station, being followed by an excited mob. At the station the bag carried by the accused was searched, and in it were found two pairs of scissors, a dagger and sheath, and a life preserver. - Mr. Partridge asked if the prisoner could account for carrying these things about, and he said he was going to have them ground. - It was further stated that he was known as the "mad barber of Peckham." - His sister said he had been intoxicated for a long time. She knew he had a dagger, but for what purpose he kept it she was not aware. - Mr. Partridge remanded the defendant, observing that if he was not right in his mind it would, perhaps, be necessary to send him to an asylum. - The prisoner, who seemed to treat the matter as a joke, then asked to be allowed out on bail, but Mr. Partridge declined to accede to his request.
At Southwark Police-court, yesterday, Collingwood Hilton Fenwick, twenty-six, described as of no occupation, but said to be of independent means, was charged before Mr. Wyndham Slade with stabbing Ellen Worsfold, an unfortunate.
The prosecutrix, a good-looking girl of nineteen, stated that about one o'clock yesterday morning she met the prisoner in Westminster Bridge-road, and he accompanied her to her lodgings at 18 Ann's-place, Waterloo-road. On arriving there he gave her half a crown. He came close to her and stabbed her in the abdomen. Crying out for help, she pushed him away, and made for the door, but he intercepted her, put his back against it, and prevented her from going out, at the same time pointing a small penknife at her in a threatening manner. She then found herself bleeding very much, and also saw blood on her assailant's hands. A young man, named Jim Peters, lived in the next room, and she called to him. The prisoner then said "Let me go." Witness replied that she would not do so until the arrival of a policeman, whereupon the accused immediately opened the door and ran downstairs, she following. Peters came out, and they both pursued Fenwick, Peters catching up to him in Tower-street, Waterloo-road, where the defendant gave up to him a knife (a small pearl-handled one-bladed penknife). He was detained until the arrival of plain-clothes constable Bettle, 95 L, who took the prisoner into custody.
Peters deposed that hearing the girl's cries he came out of his room without stockings or boots, and ran after the accused. When he got up to him he was afraid to go too near him, because from what the girl told him he was afraid he was encountering "Jack the Ripper." Fenwick gave him up the knife produced, and said if he would let him go he would give him a sovereign; but he held him until the constable took charge of him.
Dr. Fredk. W. Farr, acting divisional surgeon of the L Division, stated that he examined the prosecutrix at the Kennington-road Police-station, and found her suffering from a punctured wound half an inch long, which entered the flesh in the lower part of the abdomen. There had been great loss of blood. Although the wound was not serious, it would be a long time before it healed.
Constable Bettle deposed that when the prisoner was given into his charge he said, "I have made a great fool of myself. I have made a mistake which will be a warning to me for a long time to come." The accused had been drinking.
Inspector Jackson, who had charge of the case, stated that Fenwick was a man of means, living on his income, and had hitherto borne a good character.
The prisoner, who seemed to feel his position acutely, and when the doctor gave his evidence looked perfectly staggered and nearly fainted, was remanded for a week in custody.
Mr. Richard Mansfield has determined to remain in England when he is compelled to give up the Lyceum to Mr. Henry Irving for the promised grand revival of "Macbeth." The spirited young actor has taken the Globe Theatre for a year, and he opens there on Dec. 22 with "Prince Karl," which has proved so successful at the Lyceum. This will be quickly followed by a new comedy, a short serious drama, and the dramatic version of Mrs. Hodgson Burnett's delightful and pathetic story, "Editha's Burglar." Previously to opening at the Globe Mr. Mansfield will play in Liverpool for a week, and will give two performances at Derby for the purpose of raising a fund for the creation of a new racquet court at Derby School, where the so-called "American actor" was educated.
At Christmas, Mr. Mansfield intends to revive, at a series of matinées for the children, Mr. Savile Clarke's pretty version of Lewis Carroll's "Alice in Wonderland," which was so popular at the Prince of Wales' Theatre last year.
HOUSE OF COMMONS.
The SPEAKER took the chair at three o'clock.
The Report of Supply was brought up.
On the vote for the Metropolitan Police,
Mr. PICKERSGILL moved that the House do disagree with the resolution of the Committee so far as related to the sum of £3,300 in respect of the salaries of the chief constables and assistant chief constables. He complained that the chief constables were military officers. They were unnecessary, and were in the position of a fifth wheel in the coach. It was time that the military regime in the metropolitan police should cease.
Mr. J. ROWLANDS seconded the amendment.
Commander BETHELL confidently asserted that Sir Charles Warren had never, either in writing or verbally, questioned the superiority of the Home Secretary to the Commissioner of Police. In the very magazine article to which exception had been taken, Sir Charles Warren stated in so many words that the Commissioner was undoubtedly subject to the Home Secretary. The memorandum read by the Home Secretary the other night was, he believed, accompanied by a covering letter, the contents of which would no doubt throw some light on what was the correct interpretation of the memorandum itself. To the fact that that letter had probably been overlooked by the Home Secretary, he attributed the severe letter which had drawn a sharp reply. The view of the Commissioner as to his own duties was that no Secretary of State had power to issue an order to the police, although by statute a Secretary of State was authorised to issue orders to the Commissioner himself. From private and official knowledge of Sir Charles Warren he believed him to be a man who, when he once grasped the nature and scope of his duties, would not for any consideration - either for his own convenience or to please his superiors - either neglect or overstep those duties. It might be said that Sir Charles Warren's letter was too assertive and disagreeable in its tone, but in explanation it was necessary to recollect that a couple of years ago he was telegraphed for by the right hon. member for Edinburgh to come over from Suakin and reorganise the police of the metropolis.
Mr. CHILDERS: No, that is not so. Sir Charles Warren was offered the appointment by telegraph, and he accepted it by telegraph.
Commander BETHELL: Was not the word "reorganise" used?
Mr. CHILDERS: I think not. My impression is that upon his acceptance of the office he was requested to come home and take up his duties.
Commander BETHELL, proceeding, said he should like to hear from the Home Secretary whether Sir Charles Warren had not complained that some Home Office officials had taken upon themselves to correspond with him and to perform a considerable part of the duties of the right hon. gentleman in relation to the Commissioner, generally under the Home Secretary's signature, but not always. If so, such conduct was absolutely destructive of all true discipline.
Mr. CHILDERS said he had no idea in appointing Sir Charles Warren that he was imparting a military character to the force. There was no such idea, and he fully agreed with the views expressed the previous day by Sir William Harcourt. He had found it very difficult to select a successor to Sir Edmund Henderson. A very large number of applications was sent in, and of the six to whom they were reduced three were civilians and three were military or naval officers, and of these six Sir Charles Warren was considered to be the best selection. The right hon. gentleman having detailed the recommendations of the committee which considered the constitution of the police force after the riots in 1886, said he believed the recommendations of the report then made should be carried out, and therefore he could not support the proposal of his hon. friend (Mr. Pickersgill), who would go back to a system which had broken down. Whilst appreciating Sir Charles Warren's many high qualities, he thought that the doctrine he had laid down in replying to the Home Secretary would be destructive of the authority of that official. (Hear, hear)
Mr. MATTHEWS regretted the speech of Commander Bethell, and observed that since it had been made he would have to say a few things which might not be so agreeable to Sir Charles Warren as those he had said the previous day. He took it that the hon. and gallant member had spoken in the name of Sir Charles Warren, and the hon. member had expressed the view that in issuing the minute of 1879 the Home Secretary committed an illegal act.
Commander BETHELL: I won't tie Sir Charles Warren to that. It is my opinion most distinctly.
Mr. MATTHEWS said it was urged that the minute was illegal, and that it was in some way qualified by a covering letter which transmitted it. To assert that the minute was ultra vires and illegal on the part of the Home Secretary was to assert a principle which the Government could not admit, and which would be destructive of the whole constitutional position of the police force. They could not assent to members of the force being allowed to use the machinery of the Press for criticism of affairs of the force. (Hear, hear.) His hon. friend asked why he had drawn this rusty weapon from the shelf, but he must frankly own that he was unaware that Sir Charles Warren had written previous letters in newspapers and magazines on police administration. His attention was called to this article by questions in that House, and he was asked whether it was in accordance with the rules of the Civil Service. On finding that the article touched the highest questions of police administration, he could not do otherwise than call attention to the rule. The committee must not suppose that his letter of Nov. 8 was the only communication made by him to Sir C. Warren. Those other communications were private and less formal, but without Sir C. Warren's permission he could not further allude to them. He would point out that Sir C. Warren in no way disputed the authority of the Secretary of State in the matter, but his letter showed that he set it at naught.
Mr. W. JOHNSTON: I rise to order. I wish to ask if the right hon. gentleman is not out of order in turning his back on the chair. (Laughter.)
Mr. MATTHEWS apologised, but wished the hon. member to hear every word he said. ("Hear, hear," and laughter.) It was true Sir C. Warren raised extraordinary complaints because communications came to him signed by the Under Secretary of State, and said that he considered such documents not binding on him. Such a proceeding, if generally followed, however, would make it impossible to conduct the business of a Government department. (Hear, hear.) It was true that Sir C. Warren regarded it as an indignity that his proposals should be considered by the receiver of the Metropolitan Police, who had to do with financial matters. Sir C. Warren's relations with the Home Office were something like the position of a separated Ireland from the rest of the Empire. (Laughter.) He could assure his hon. friend that the Criminal Investigation Department had not suffered from the action of Sir C. Warren, or of anybody else, and he believed it was as good as ever it was. No change had been made in the Home Office practice, and Sir C. Warren had been treated with exceptional consideration during his tenure of the office of Commissioner. (Hear, hear.)
Mr. J. STUART thought the debate had completely refuted the claims made by Sir C. Warren on behalf of the Chief Commissioner of Police.
Mr. J. ROWLANDS trusted that the House would soon arrive at the decision that London should control its own police.
Mr. CUNINGHAME GRAHAM remarked that if the people of London looked for protection from the chiefs of the Liberal party in this police question they relied on a broken reed. (Ministerial cheers.) Their sympathies could only be looked for where political capital was to be made. (Laughter.)
The House divided -
For the amendment ... ... 30
Against ... ... 143
Majority against ... ... 113
Mr LAWSON asked for some explanation of the fact that during the past ten years the cost of the police had increased in more than twice the ratio of the increase of population.
Mr. STUART-WORTLEY said he had not had time to go into the figures, but he questioned the accuracy of the hon. gentleman's calculation.
Mr. J. STUART moved the adjournment of the debate.
Mr. CONYBEARE seconded the motion.
The House divided -
For the adjournment ... ... 25
Against ... ... 116
Majority against ... ... 91
Mr. W. H. SMITH having appealed to the House, the vote was agreed to.
The House adjourned at two o'clock.
It has been settled that the funeral of the murdered woman Kelly shall take place on Monday. The hearse will leave the Shoreditch Mortuary at eleven o'clock, and the remains will be interred in Chingford Cemetery.
Though investigation is being made, the police have not yet discovered the men who, it is alleged, had the interview with the fruiterer Packer, and to one of whom the startling statement published yesterday is attributed.
SIR - Can nothing be done to prevent a set of hoarse ruffians coming nightly about our suburban squares and streets, yelling at the tops of their hideous voices, "Special Edition" - "Whitechapel" - "Murder" - "Another of 'em!" - "Mutilation!" - "Special Edition!" - "Beautiful - Awful - Murder!" and so on, and nearly frightening the lives out of all the sensitive women and children in the neighbourhood? Last evening (Wednesday), for instance, their cry was, "Special - Murder - Paper - Jack - The Ripper - Caught - Paper - Whitechapel - Paper - Got 'im at Last - Paper - Murder - Ripper - Paper - Murder - Got the Ripper - Paper - At Last."
These awful words were bawled out about nine o'clock in a quiet part of Kensington; and a lady who was supping with us was so greatly distressed by these hideous bellowings that she was absolutely too unnerved to return home save in a cab, because she would have to walk about a hundred or two yards down a quiet street at the other end of her journey by omnibus.
Now, I venture to ask, Sir, is it not monstrous that the police do not protect us from such a flagrant and ghastly nuisance?
I enclose my card, and beg to subscribe myself,
Kensington, Nov. 15.
A deputation, representing the Metropolitan police force, waited on Sir Charles Warren at his private residence, St. George's-road, yesterday, for the purpose of expressing their regret at his resignation. The deputation was composed of the superintendents of the various divisions, the only absentees being Superintendents Shore and Steel, who are on sick leave, and Superintendent Butt, who is out of London at present.
Superintendent DRAPER, of the D Division, was deputed to act as spokesman. He paid a high tribute to Sir Charles Warren's thoughtfulness and care for those under his command, and whilst admitting the perfection to which discipline had now been brought, repudiated the idea that such discipline was in any degree distasteful to the force so long as the regulations were administered with the fairness and equity which had characterised Sir Charles Warren's tenure of office. Speaking more especially for the superintendents, he might say that since Sir Charles had been Commissioner they had been able to do their work not only much more efficiently but with much more comfort to themselves. They felt that he was always prepared to take the responsibility for and to uphold them in what they did, and they consequently never lost that confidence without which their arduous duties could not be satisfactorily discharged. As for the men, there were only two matters which had given rise to any feeling at all since Sir Charles took office. One of these was the new set of regulations in regard to drunkenness, and the other was the question of pensions for injury received whilst on duty. The superintendents knew perfectly well that the Commissioner was not responsible for these decisions, but the constables were not so well informed. In conclusion, Mr. Draper expressed, in well-chosen terms, the deep regret which he and his coadjutors felt at the severance of their connection with Sir Charles Warren, and said he was sure the force generally would cordially concur in their good wishes for his future welfare and happiness.
Superintendent FISHER, of the A Division, said that although he was not deputed to speak he could not resist congratulating Sir Charles on the extraordinary change he had effected in the status of the superintendents. Before his appointment superintendents had no position whatever, and were constantly in receipt of contradictory orders. Now they were entirely under the control of one person, the Commissioner, and could perform their duties in a manner never before possible.
Sir CHARLES WARREN thanked the deputation warmly for their assurances of esteem and consideration. He said it had always been his endeavour to combine discipline with justice to every member of the force; and it was gratifying to know that his efforts had not been altogether without success. With regard to the first point touched upon by Mr. Draper (the new regulations respecting drunkenness in the force), he explained that although he had very strong views on the subject of intemperance, he was not responsible for the order which had been recently promulgated. The order emanated from the Home Secretary, who on several occasions called attention to the fact that the punishments for drunkenness were merely nominal, and ultimately instructed him (Sir Charles) to issue most stringent orders in reference to the offence. On the second point he was equally free from reproach. He had recommended several men on the Chief Surgeon's certificate for pensions, on the ground of injury while on duty, but the Home Secretary had taken a different view of the matter. In conclusion, Sir Charles said he had been greatly disappointed at having found no opportunity to visit the various divisions during his tenure of office. The work of consolidating the orders, on which he had been steadily engaged, had occupied so much of his time that he had seldom been able to leave Whitehall-place. During the past few weeks, however, he had at last succeeded in clearing the decks, and he had hoped now to see the men in their respective divisions. He again thanked them for their kindness, and assured them that their willing and cordial co-operation in such reforms as he had ventured to propose would be one of the pleasantest recollections of his Commissionership.