THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 20, 1888
In the Whitechapel Working Lads' Institute, yesterday afternoon, Mr. Wynne E. Baxter, Coroner for East Middlesex, resumed his inquiry respecting the death of Mrs. Annie Chapman, who was found dead in the yard of the house 29, Hanbury-street, Whitechapel, her body dreadfully cut and mutilated, early on the morning of Saturday, the 8th inst. The following evidence was called:
Eliza Cooper: I am a hawker, and lodge in Dorset-street, Spitalfields. Have done so for the last five months. I knew the deceased, and had a quarrel with her on the Tuesday before she was murdered. The quarrel arose in this way: On the previous Saturday she brought Mr. Stanley into the house where I lodged in Dorset-street, and coming into the kitchen asked the people to give her some soap. They told her to ask "Liza" - meaning me. She came to me, and I opened the locker and gave her some. She gave it to Stanley, who went outside and washed himself in the lavatory. When she came back I asked for the soap, but she did not return it. She said, "I will see you by and bye." Mr. Stanley gave her two shillings, and paid for her bed for two nights. I saw no more of her that night. On the following Tuesday I saw her in the kitchen of the lodging-house. I said, "Perhaps you will return my soap." She threw a halfpenny on the table, and said, "Go and get a halfpennyworth of soap." We got quarrelling over this piece of soap, and we went out to the Ringers Public-house and continued the quarrel. She slapped my face, and said, "Think yourself lucky I don't do more." I struck her in the left eye, I believe, and then in the chest. I afterwards saw that the blow I gave her had marked her face.
When was the last time you saw her alive? - On the Thursday night, in the Ringers.
Was she wearing rings? - Yes, she was wearing three rings on the middle finger of the left hand. They were all brass.
Had she ever a gold wedding ring to your knowledge? - No, not since I have known her. I have known her about fifteen months. I know she associated with Stanley, "Harry the Hawker," and several others.
The Foreman: Are there any of those with whom she associated missing? - I could not tell.
A Juryman: Was she on the same relations with them as she was with Stanley? - No, sir. She used to bring them casually into the lodging-house.
Dr. Phillips, divisional surgeon of the metropolitan police, was then recalled.
The Coroner, before asking him to give evidence, said: Whatever may be your opinion and objections, it appears to me necessary that all the evidence that you ascertained from the post-mortem examination should be on the records of the Court for various reasons, which I need not enumerate. However painful it may be, it is necessary in the interests of justice.
Dr. Phillips: I have not had any notice of that. I should have been glad if notice had been given me, because I should have been better prepared to give the evidence; however, I will do my best.
The Coroner: Would you like to postpone it?
Dr. Phillips: Oh, no. I will do my best. I still think that it is a very great pity to make this evidence public. Of course, I bow to your decision; but there are matters which have come to light now which show the wisdom of the course pursued on the last occasion, and I cannot help reiterating my regret that you have come to a different conclusion. On the last occasion, just before I left the court, I mentioned to you that there were reasons why I thought the perpetrator of the act upon the woman's throat had caught hold of her chin. These reasons were that just below the lobe of the left ear were three scratches, and there was also a bruise on the right cheek. When I come to speak of the wounds on the lower part of the body I must again repeat my opinion that it is highly injudicious to make the results of my examination public. These details are fit only for yourself, sir, and the jury, but to make them public would simply be disgusting.
The Coroner: We are here in the interests of justice, and must have all the evidence before us. I see, however, that there are several ladies and boys in the room, and I think they might retire. (Two ladies and a number of newspaper messenger boys accordingly left the court.)
Dr. Phillips again raised an objection to the evidence, remarking: In giving these details to the public I believe you are thwarting the ends of justice.
The Coroner: We are bound to take all the evidence in the case, and whether it be made public or not is a matter for the responsibility of the press.
The Foreman: We are of opinion that the evidence the doctor on the last occasion wished to keep back should be heard. (Several Jurymen: Hear, hear.)
The Coroner: I have carefully considered the matter and have never before heard of any evidence requested being kept back.
Dr. Phillips: I have not kept it back; I have only suggested whether it should be given or not.
The Coroner: We have delayed taking this evidence as long as possible, because you said the interests of justice might be served by keeping it back; but it is now a fortnight since this occurred, and I do not see why it should be kept back from the jury any longer.
Dr. Phillips: I am of opinion that what I am about to describe took place after death, so that it could not affect the cause of death, which you are inquiring into.
The Coroner: That is only your opinion, and might be repudiated by other medical opinion.
Dr. Phillips: Very well. I will give you the results of my post-mortem examination. Witness then detailed the terrible wounds which had been inflicted upon the woman, and described the parts of the body which the perpetrator of the murder had carried away with him. He added: I am of opinion that the length of the weapon with which the incisions were inflicted was at least five to six inches in length - probably more - and must have been very sharp. The manner in which they had been done indicated a certain amount of anatomical knowledge.
The Coroner: Can you give any idea how long it would take to perform the incisions found on the body?
Dr. Phillips: I think I can guide you by saying that I myself could not have performed all the injuries I saw on that woman, and effect them, even without a struggle, under a quarter of an hour. If I had done it in a deliberate way, such as would fall to the duties of a surgeon, it would probably have taken me the best part of an hour. The whole inference seems to me that the operation was performed to enable the perpetrator to obtain possession of these parts of the body.
The Coroner: Have you anything further to add with reference to the stains on the wall?
Dr. Phillips: I have not been able to obtain any further traces of blood on the wall.
The Foreman: Is there anything to indicate that the crime in the case of the woman Nicholls was perpetrated with the same object as this?
The Coroner: There is a difference in this respect, at all events, that the medical expert is of opinion that, in the case of Nicholls, the mutilations were made first.
The Foreman: Was any photograph of the eyes of the deceased taken, in case they should retain any impression of the murderer.
Dr. Phillips: I have no particular opinion upon that point myself. I was asked about it very early in the inquiry, and I gave my opinion that the operation would be useless, especially in this case. The use of a blood-hound was also suggested. It may be my ignorance, but the blood around was that of the murdered woman, and it would be more likely to be traced than the murderer. These questions were submitted to me by the police very early. I think within twenty-four hours of the murder of the woman.
The Coroner: Were the injuries to the face and neck such as might have produced insensibility?
The witness: Yes; they were consistent with partial suffocation.
Mrs. Elizabeth Long said: I live in Church-row, Whitechapel, and my husband, James Long, is a cart minder. On Saturday, Sept. 8, about half past five o'clock in the morning, I was passing down Hanbury-street, from home, on my way to Spitalfields Market. I knew the time, because I heard the brewer's clock strike half-past five just before I got to the street. I passed 29, Hanbury-street. On the right-hand side, the same side as the house, I saw a man and a woman standing on the pavement talking. The man's back was turned towards Brick-lane, and the woman's was towards the market. They were standing only a few yards nearer Brick-lane from 29, Hanbury-street. I saw the woman's face. Have seen the deceased in the mortuary, and I am sure the woman that I saw in Hanbury-street was the deceased. I did not see the man's face, but I noticed that he was dark. He was wearing a brown low-crowned felt hat. I think he had on a dark coat, though I am not certain. By the look of him he seemed to me a man over forty years of age. He appeared to me to be a little taller than the deceased.
Did he look like a working man, or what? - He looked like a foreigner.
Did he look like a dock labourer, or a workman, or what? - I should say he looked like what I should call shabby-genteel.
Were they talking loudly? - They were talking pretty loudly. I overheard him say to her "Will you?" and she replied, "Yes." That is all I heard, and I heard this as I passed. I left them standing there, and I did not look back, so I cannot say where they went to.
Did they appear to be sober? - I saw nothing to indicate that either of them was the worse for drink.
Was it not an unusual thing to see a man and a woman standing there talking? - Oh no. I see lots of them standing there in the morning.
At that hour of the day? - Yes; that is why I did not take much notice of them.
You are certain about the time? - Quite.
What time did you leave home? - I got out about five o'clock, and I reached the Spitalfields Market a few minutes after half-past five.
The Foreman of the jury: What brewer's clock did you hear strike half-past five? - The brewer's in Brick-lane.
Edward Stanley, Osborn-place, Osborn-street, Spitalfields, deposed: I am a bricklayer's labourer.
The Coroner: Are you known by the name of the Pensioner? - Yes.
Did you know the deceased? - I did.
And you sometimes visited her? - Yes.
At 35, Dorset-street? - About once there, or twice, something like that. Other times I have met her elsewhere.
When did you last see her alive? - On Sunday, Sept. 2, between one and three o'clock in the afternoon.
Was she wearing rings when you saw her? - Yes, I believe two. I could not say on which finger, but they were on one of her fingers.
What sort of rings were they - what was the metal? - Brass, I should think by the look of them.
Do you know any one she was on bad terms with? - No one, so far as I know. The last time I saw her she had some bruises on her face - a slight black eye, which some other woman had given her. I did not take much notice of it. She told me something about having had a quarrel. It is possible that I may have seen deceased after Sept. 2, as I was doing nothing all that week. If I did see her I only casually met her, and we might have had a glass of beer together. My memory is rather confused about it.
The Coroner: The deputy of the lodging-house said he was told not to let the bed to the deceased with any other man but you? - It was not from me he received those orders. I have seen it described that the man used to come on the Saturday night, and remain until the Monday morning. I have never done so.
The Foreman: You were supposed to be the pensioner.
The Coroner: It must be some other man?
Witness: I cannot say; I am only speaking for myself.
Are you a pensioner? - Can I object to answer that question, sir? It does not touch on anything here.
Coroner: It was said the man was with her on one occasion when going to receive his pension?
Witness: Then it could not have been me. It has been stated all over Europe that it was me, but it was not.
The Coroner: It will affect your financial position all over Europe when it is known that you are not a pensioner? - It will affect my financial position in this way, sir, in that I am a loser by having to come here for nothing, and may get discharged for not being at my work.
Were you ever in the Royal Sussex Regiment? - Never, sir. I am a law-abiding man, sir, and interfere with no person who does not interfere with me.
The Coroner: Call the deputy.
Timothy Donovan, deputy of the lodging-house, who gave evidence on a previous occasion, was then recalled.
The Coroner: Did ever you see that man (pointing to Stanley) before? - Yes.
Is he the man you call "the pensioner"? - Yes.
Was it he who used to come with the deceased on Saturday and stay till Monday? - Yes.
Was it he who told you not to let the bed to the deceased with any other man? - Yes; on the second Saturday he told me.
How many times have you seen him there? - I should think five or six Saturdays.
When was he last there? - On the Saturday before the woman's death. He stayed until Monday. He paid for one night, and the woman afterwards came down and paid for the other.
The Coroner: What have you got to say to that, Mr. Stanley?
Stanley: You can cross it all out, sir.
Cross your evidence out, you mean? - Oh, no; not mine, but his. It is all wrong. I went to Gosport on Aug. 6 and remained there until Sept. 1.
The Coroner: Probably the deputy has made a mistake.
A Juror (to Stanley): Had you known deceased at Windsor at all? - No; she told me she knew some one about Windsor, and that she once lived there.
You did not know her there? - No; I have only known her about two years. I have never been to Windsor.
Did you call at Dorset-street on Saturday, the 8th, after the murder? - Yes; I was told by a shoeblack it was she who was murdered, and I went to the lodging-house to ask if it was the fact. I was surprised, and went away.
Did you not give any information to the police that you knew her? You might have volunteered evidence, you know? - I did volunteer evidence. I went voluntarily to Commercial-street Police-station, and told them what I knew.
The Coroner: They did not tell you that the police wanted you? - Not on the 8th, but afterwards. They told me the police wanted to see me after I had been to the police.
Albert Cadosch deposed: I live at 27, Hanbury-street, and am a carpenter. 27 is next door to 29, Hanbury-street. On Saturday, Sept. 8, I got up about a quarter past five in the morning, and went into the yard. It was then about twenty minutes past five, I should think. As I returned towards the back door I heard a voice say "No" just as I was going through the door. It was not in our yard, but I should think it came from the yard of No. 29. I, however, cannot say on which side it came from. I went indoors, but returned to the yard about three or four minutes afterwards. While coming back I heard a sort of a fall against the fence which divides my yard from that of 29. It seemed as if something touched the fence suddenly.
The Coroner: Did you look to see what it was? - No.
Had you heard any noise while you were at the end of your yard? - No.
Any rustling of clothes? - No. I then went into the house, and from there into the street to go to my work. It was about two minutes after half-past five as I passed Spitalfields Church.
Do you ever hear people in these yards? - Now and then, but not often.
By a Juryman: I informed the police the same night after I returned from my work.
The Foreman: What height are the palings? - About 5 ft. 6 in. to 6 ft. high.
And you had not the curiosity to look over? - No, I had not.
It is not usual to hear thumps against the palings? - They are packing-case makers, and now and then there is a great case goes up against the palings. I was thinking about my work, and not that there was anything the matter, otherwise most likely I would have been curious enough to look over.
The Foreman of the Jury: It's a pity you did not.
By the Coroner. - I did not see any man and woman in the street when I went out.
William Stevens, 35, Dorset-street, stated: I am a painter. I knew the deceased. I last saw her alive at twenty minutes past twelve on the morning of Saturday, Sept. 8. She was in the kitchen. She was not the worse for drink.
Had she got any rings on her fingers? - Yes. Shown a piece of an envelope, witness said he believed it was the same as she picked up near the fireplace. Did not notice a crest, but it was about that size, and it had a red postmark on it. She left the kitchen, and witness thought she was going to bed. Never saw her again. Did not know any one that she was on bad terms with.
This was all the evidence obtainable.
A Juryman: Is there any chance of a reward being offered by the Home Secretary?
The Foreman: There is already a reward of £100 offered by Mr. Samuel Montagu, M.P. There is a committee getting up subscriptions, and they expect to get about £200. The coroner has already said that the Government are not prepared to offer a reward.
A Juror: There is more dignity about a Government reward, and I think one ought to be offered.
The Foreman of the Jury: There are several ideas of rewards, and it is supposed that about £300 will be got up. It will all be done by private individuals.
The Coroner: As far as we know, the case is complete.
The Foreman of the Jury: It seems to be a case of murder against some person or persons unknown.
It was then agreed to adjourn the inquiry until next Wednesday before deciding upon the terms of the verdict.
The police have made no further arrest. The indignation at the East-end owing to the attitude of the Home Office is increasing, and yesterday the Vigilance Committee, of which Mr. Lusk is president, met again at 74, Mile-end-road, for the purpose of receiving the reports of their honorary officers in the matter. From the statements of Mr. Aarons, Mr. B. Harris, Mr. Cohen, and the president himself, there appeared to be some thousands of the better classes at the East-end who believe that a substantial Government reward would bring about the apprehension of the murderer, and the police authorities and the Home Office were condemned for declining to offer the reward.
The secretary said that on the 15th inst. the committee sent a letter to the Home Secretary on the subject, which was to the following effect: "At a meeting of the Committee of Gentlemen held at 74, Mile-end-road, E., it was resolved to approach you upon the subject of the reward we are about to offer for the discovery of the author or authors of the late atrocities in the East-end of London, and to ask you, sir, to augment our fund for the said purpose, or kindly state your reasons for refusing. To this letter he had received the following communication:
"Whitehall, Sept. 17, 1888.
Sir - I am directed by the Secretary of State to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 16th inst. with reference to the question of the offer of a reward for the discovery of the perpetrators of the recent murders in Whitechapel, and I am to inform you that, had the Secretary of State considered the case a proper one for the offer of a reward, he would at once have offered one on behalf of the Government; but that the practice of offering rewards for the discovery of criminals was discontinued some years ago, because experience showed that such offers of reward tended to produce more harm than good, and the Secretary of State is satisfied that there is nothing in the circumstances of the present case to justify a departure from this rule. - I am, Sir, your obedient servant,"G. LEIGH PEMBERTON.
"Mr. B. Harris, The Crown, 74, Mile-end-road, E."
ASSAULT IN PICCADILLY - Some alarm was occasioned yesterday in the West-end by the report that a woman had been stabbed between two and three o'clock that morning in Piccadilly, and had been removed to St. George's Hospital in a dangerous condition. Upon investigation the name of the woman in question was given as Adelaide Rutter, of 21, Stangate-street, Westminster Bridge-road. She had, it appeared, been in the company of an unknown man, described as a groom, tall and dark, and in Down-street they had had an altercation concerning money, during which the man struck her on the right cheek, it is supposed, with a stick, inflicting a contused wound which bled somewhat. The man made off, and the woman obtained the assistance of a police-constable, who took her in a hansom cab to the hospital at Hyde Park-corner.
A BRIXTON MYSTERY. - On Monday afternoon last Mrs. Mary Ann Forward, the wife of Mr. John Forward, who occupies the house situated at 47, St. James's-road, Brixton, was getting some coals out of a cupboard under some stairs, when she discovered a hole in the boarding, and, placing her hand through the aperture for the purpose of ascertaining if any of the coals had fallen through, she drew forth a brown-paper parcel, which was found to contain the body of a male child, with the exception of the head, which had been cut off close to the shoulders. The body was dressed in a white cotton nightgown, the sleeves of which were turned up to the elbow, the whole of which was covered with bloodstains. The police were at once communicated with, and the Divisional surgeon, Dr. Knight, of Brixton-road, was then called. That gentleman states that he believes the deceased was medically attended. Police-constable Morrison, 9 W R, who took the boards up, failed to discover the head.
THE WHITECHAPEL MURDER. - Dr. L. Forbes Winslow gives it as his opinion, speaking as a physician, "that whatever is the malady we have to combat with, attempts should be made to do so in its earliest stage, and not wait until the disease has completely laid hold of the victim." Lamplough's Pyretic Saline supplies a safe and reliable antidote to all diseases arising from disordered stomach, indigestion, and liver troubles, and may be had at Chemists everywhere. - [ADVERTISEMENT]
Yesterday the coroner resumed his inquest respecting the death of Mrs. Annie Chapman, who was found murdered in a yard in Hanbury-street, Whitechapel, on the 8th inst. Dr. Phillips, the divisional surgeon, who made the post-mortem examination, was recalled, and entered into detailed particulars as to the nature of the mutilations inflicted upon the victim. A portion of the body had been removed, and he inferred that it was to obtain possession of this that the operation had been performed. The manner in which the incision had been made indicated a certain amount of anatomical knowledge, and the witness could not himself have effected it, even if there had been no struggle, in less than a quarter of an hour. One other important piece of evidence was that of a woman who saw the deceased talking with a shabby-genteel-looking man, whom she judged to be a foreigner, at half-past five on the morning of the 8th, near the spot where the body was discovered half an hour later. The inquest was adjourned for a week, when the jury will settle the terms of their verdict.