5 November 1888
A MANIA FOR HOAXING
ANOTHER FALS ALARM
The following letter was picked up in Spitalfields on Saturday: "Des Boss, - In spite of all your police precautions, and in spite of all the efforts of the Vigilance Committee, I committed another murder last night, and have hid the body away in Osborne-street, headless, legless, armless, and naked. - Yours truly, JACK THE RIPPER." Though the matter was naturally regarded as a hoax, the police took official cognisance of it, and made the necessary inquiries.
A sensation was for a time created at noon to-day in the vicinity of Commercial-street Police-station, Whitechapel, when a rumour gained currency that the real murderer had alt last been apprehended. A crowd followed the suspected culprit to the station, into which he was taken by a constable who had him in charge. The accused's face was blackened, and this fact, coupled with his rather forbidding appearance, lent colour to the story of this connection with the crime. The outside mob quickly dispersed when it was announced that the man had only been associated with some "Guying" festivities.
"I want to know about these mutilated remains found in Osborne-street," exclaimed an excited man as he last night rushed into the police-station in Commercial-street, Whitechapel. The officers were at once on the alert. "What mutilated remains?" was asked the man. His tale was then briefly explained. The poor fellow, producing a Sunday paper, asserted that "Jack the Ripper" hat actually committed the crime mentioned in the announcement, which, it may be said, was a hoax. Through dwelling on the painful incident of the district for the past few weeks, the applicant's mind had become affected: and, after denouncing a thoroughly respectable man (since proved innocent), the strange visitor, who gave an address in Brick-lane, was allowed to depart, after he had declined to make any formal statement. The police gave visited Osborne-street. No trace has been discovered of any fresh crime.
PETITION for BARTLETT'S REPRIEVE
Mr. Waters, the solicitor for the prisoner, Levi Richard Bartlett, who now lies under sentence of death for murder of his wife, Elizabeth, at Poplar,, has prepared a petition to the Home Secretary for the remission of the capital sentence. The petition has been influentially signed by the inhabitants if Millwall, and the officials and other authorities at the Royal Albert Dock.