Decatur, Illinois, U.S.A.
9 April 1892
A Verdict of Wilful Murder
A Verdict of Wilful Murder by the Coroner's Jury
DINHAM VILLA, RAINHILL, TO BE RAZED
Facts Coming to Light which render it Exceedingly Probable that Deeming is the Veritable Jack the Ripper
A Verdict of Wilful Murder
Melbourne, April 7,
The coroner's jury delivered a verdict of wilful murder against Frederick B. Deeming, in the case of the wife, formerly Miss Mather, whom he married at Rainhill, England, and whom he murdered and buried at Windsor, a suburb of Melbourne, on or about last Christmas day.
Deeming received the verdict with a defiant air. It yet remains for him to be examined before a magistrate and committed for trial. He will then be indicted for the crime, after which trial, conviction and execution are expected to follow speedily.
The police of Sydney have been endeavoring to ascertain what became of a former wife of Deeming, whom he lived with in that city. It was supposed that he murdered her as he had his other wives. The woman, however, proves to be alive. Deeming deserted her, and she, it appears, was not sorry to let him go. He did not buy any cement, when he lived with her, or show unusual interest in repairing the fireplace.
London, April 7.
Dinham Villa, the building in which Deeming, alias Williams, perpetrated the murder of his wife and four children, is to be demolished. Mrs. Hayes, the owner, says: "I could not expect people to again occupy the building. I will, however, build another house near or on the site. The loss to me personally will be very great, but I have decided to bear the first cost rather than the last."
It is not expected, however, that the demolition will take place until after Deeming is disposed of.
London, April 7.
A dressmaker of London has identified the portrait of Deeming as that of a man who, in the autumn of 1888, was paying attention to her with a view to matrimony. He showed great excitement over the Ripper murders, of which several were perpetrated that year, and left her company a few hours before the murder of Mrs. Chapman, whose body was found in Hanbury street, Whitechapel, on the morning of September 8, 1888, she having been murdered the previous night. Other Ripper murders occurred about that time in rapid succession, the list of those mysterious crimes having begun in Christmas week of the previous year, 1887, with the killing of an unknown woman near Osborne and Wentworth streets, Whitechapel. If the dressmaker is as correct as she is positive in her recollections, Deeming was in London during the autumn of 1878 (sic) when several of the murders occurred. On August 7 in that year Martha Turner was found dead with thirty nine stab wounds, on a landing in the model dwellings known as George Yard buildings, Commercial street, Spitalfields. On August 31, another woman, belonging also to the unfortunate class, was murdered and mutilated in Buck's row, Whitechapel. Then, on September 7, came the murder with which the dressmaker connects Deeming. Mrs. Chapman was the fourth victim, and her body was found in the morning of September 8. Her throat had been cut from ear to ear and the body cut open as if by a dissector. The body lay on the ground and a portion of the remains had been tied around the neck. Like the other women killed, she was a dissolute character, and lived in a wretched and densely populated part of the city. There never was any doubt that her murder was committed by the same man who had perpetrated the other three, the victims all having been murdered by a knife, in an identical manner. The police, it is well known, were signally unsuccessful in their efforts to detect the criminal.
The dressmaker says that the time Deeming left her company on the evening of September 7 was about an hour before the time at which medical testimony at the inquest indicated that the Chapman woman was probably murdered. A few days after the crime the man she believes was Deeming disappeared, and she never saw him again. The chronology of Deeming's record, so far as ascertained, agrees with the dressmaker's story. It is as follows:-
Frederick Bailey Deeming marries Miss Mary James, leaves England for Cape Town - 1880.
Deeming joined by his wife (now identified as Mary James) in Sydney - 1882.
Deeming receives six weeks imprisonment for theft - 1882.
Absconds from Sydney on charge of fraudulent insolvency - 1886.
Returns to England August 11, and to Birkenhead, leaving that place and his wife after the birth of his fourth child, about four months afterward - 1889.
Deeming returned from South Africa in the spring of 1890. He had a formidable assortment of knives. Samuel Mercier, of Rainhill, who was well acquainted with Deeming, says: "Deeming represented himself to me to be a military man, and said he had fourteen scars on him." He went on to talk very glibly as to the engagements of hand to hand encounters which he had gone through as inspector in the army. He would not call himself a soldier altogether, although he had said that he "had been under fire." Deeming showed me various weapons, including swords, knives, spears and an assegai which he said he had from Zululand. He particularly dwelt on a very handsome sword which was adorned with silver and a band of gold, and which he said he had fought two hours for. He next showed me a beautiful knife with a sheath made of woven silver wire, and said it belonged to Cetewayo."
The opinion that Deeming committed several of the Ripper murders is strengthened in public opinion by the dressmaker's statement.