20 November 1888
Mr. CUNINGHAME GRAHAM asked the Home Secretary whether he had seen the letter published by Sir Charles Warren on Saturday, in which he said, "in many cases, while accepting the directions given to me, which were to all appearances contrary to the statute, I have entered a protest, and, whilst protesting, I have taken legal advice."
Mr. MATTHEWS asked for notice of the question.
Mr. PICKERSGILL asked whether the attention of the right hon. gentleman had been drawn to the concluding part of the letter of Sir C. Warren, in which he expressed his astonishment at the statement made by the Home Secretary, and said an entirely different impression would be conveyed to the public mind if the correspondence with regard to his action was made known; and whether the right hon. gentleman would accept that challenge and produce the correspondence in question.
Mr. MATTHEWS said he had already read to the House the letter of Sir C. Warren in which he declined to accept the instructions of the Secretary of State, and that was the correspondence to which he (Mr. Matthews) referred in his statement to the House.
The funeral for Marie Jeanette Kelly, the victim of the latest Whitechapel murder, took place yesterday at Leytonstone Cemetery in the presence of a large number of people. An hour before the remains left the mortuary many hundreds of persons assembled around Shoreditch Church, and watched in silence the funeral arrangements. The coffin, which was of elm and oak, with metal fittings, was placed on an open hearse drawn by two horses, and was followed by two mourning carriages, containing the man Joseph Barnett, who lived with the deceased, and several of the unfortunate woman’s associates who gave evidence at the inquest. The coffin bore the following inscription:
"Marie Jeanette Kelly, died November 9, 1888, aged 25 years," and on it were placed two crowns and a cross, made of heartsease and white flowers. The whole of the funeral expenses are defrayed by Mr. Wilton, who for fifty years has acted as sexton of St. Leonard’s, Shoreditch, in the mortuary of which the body was lying. At half-past twelve, as the coffin was borne from the mortuary, the bell of the church was tolled, and the people outside, who now numbered several thousands, manifested the utmost sympathy, the crowd, for an East-end one, being extremely orderly. Vehicles of various descriptions took up positions outside the church railings, and traffic was completely blocked until the hearse moved on.
The funeral procession, which left Shoreditch Church at a quarter to one, made but slow progress through the crowds of people and vehicles. All along the route through Whitechapel and Cambridge-heath signs of sympathy were to be seen on every hand, and it was a very tough sight to witness many poor women of the class to which the deceased belonged greatly affected. The cortege reached St. Patrick’s Roman Catholic Cemetery, Leyton, a few minutes before two o’clock. It was met by the Rev. Father Colomban, O.S.F., who led the way, proceeded by two acolytes and a cross-bearer, to the north-east corner of the burial ground, where the interment took place. There was only a small attendance in the cemetery.
The Press Association is informed by Arthur Bachert, the young man who gave to the police a description of a man seen in the neighbourhood of Berner-street at the time of the murder of Elizabeth Stride, that he was awakened at his home in Newnham-street yesterday morning by a policeman, who called his attention to some chalk writing on the blank wall of the house as follows:
"Dear Boss, I am still about; look out. Yours, Jack the Ripper."
It is stated by Bachert that the writing resembles that on the now famous postcard and letter published by the police, especially the B in "Boss" and the R in "Ripper." A crowd collected, and Mrs. Bachert partly removed the cause of their attraction by washing out the letters; otherwise the police would have photographed the writing.
A correspondent telegraphs that much excitement has been caused in West Bromwich by the visit of a man resembling much in appearance the published description of the Whitechapel murderer. About dusk on Sunday evening he went to a house in Tentany-lane, and asked the woman who answered his knock whether there were any houses of ill-fame in the neighbourhood, saying he had come down from London specially to destroy the frequenters of such dwellings. He added that he was determined that they should no longer cumber the earth. On being told that there were no such houses anywhere near, the man walked quickly away. The woman had not sufficient presence of mind to raise an alarm, and the man got away without molestation. The police have been communicated with, but no arrest has been made. The man is described as of medium height, about 35 years of age, with dark moustache, and of gentlemanly address.
At the Thames Police Court yesterday, before Mr. Saunders, Samuel Graham, 52, a strange-looking man, was charged with being a wandering lunatic.
Constable 90 K stated about a quarter to six o’clock on Monday morning his attention was called to the defendant by some persons, who complained he had rushed at them while in the East India-road. Graham then knocked at a house door, saying, "He’s in there." As he acted very strangely, witness took him to the station, when he knelt down and appeared to be praying.
Inspector King stated that during the last few days Graham had been wandering about and he had been to the station complaining that persons were following him. Graham had been charged on suspicion with being the Whitechapel murderer.
He was sent to the workhouse.
At the Marylebone Police-Court yesterday, before Mr. De Rutzen, James Bunyan, 45, of Kensal-road, was charged with being disorderly; also with assaulting Gersee Somo, of The Avenue Harlesden.
On Saturday night the prosecutor was passing along the Harrow-road, and near a man selling books in the street he saw the prisoner. The latter was shouting, and that caused prosecutor to notice him. Mr. Somo walked on towards his home, and directly afterwards found the prisoner following him, so as to avoid him he crossed the road. The prisoner shouted out several times, "I’ll have you," and the crowd which followed called on, "He’s Jack the Ripper." The prisoner got prosecutor against the wall, and shouted out, "Now I’ve got you," and a struggle ensued, during which prosecutor’s coat was torn. Mr. Somo tried to run away, and the prisoner followed him, saying, "I’ll have you."
Police-constable 186 X said he heard the crowd shout out, "Jack the Ripper," and as he could not get a satisfactory explanation from the prisoner he took him into custody.
Mr. De Rutzen remarked that the horrible tragedies in Whitechapel seemed to have an extraordinary effect on some people. There were so many instances of this kind that it was scarcely safe to go about the streets. He sentenced the prisoner to 14 days’ imprisonment, and refused an application to impose a fine.
At the same court Henry Humphrey, 36, a professional billiard-player, was charged with behaving in a disorderly manner and using threatening language towards Ann Vaughan, of Malvern-road, Kilburn.
The prosecutrix, a young woman, said she was standing at the junction of Cambridge and Malvern roads, about twenty minutes after nine o’clock on Sunday night, waiting for a female cousin to arrive, The prisoner came up to her and said, "Good evening, miss," but she took no notice of him, and walked towards her cousin, who was approaching her. The prisoner followed, and said something about their being nice young women. The prisoner then uplifted his arm, and from up his sleeve produced a long dagger, with very sharp curved point, and drawing her attention to it said, "This will do for you." She and her cousin screamed at the top of their voices, and the prisoner told them not to do that. He went away, and they went to a policeman and gave information of what had happened. Police-constable 332 X arrested the prisoner, and when told the charge he said it was only a stupid joke. He had actually been into a shop and sharpened the knife on the counter.
Mr. De Rutzen said this sort of thing must be stopped. He remanded him for a week, and at present refused bail.
At the Marlborough Police Court yesterday, before Mr. Hannay, William Avenall, 26, chimney sweep, Adam and Eve-court, Oxford-street, and Frederick W. Moore, 28, carver and gilder, Carlisle-street, Soho, were charged, on remand, with behaving in a disorderly manner and assaulting Henry Edward Leeke, an oil and colourman of Gilbert-street.
The evidence previously given was to the effect that on the evening of the 10th inst., shortly before eight o’clock, the prosecutor, who is a man of small stature, went into a public-house in the neighbourhood of Berners-street, Oxford-street, when someone in the bar suggested that he was "Jack the Ripper." On leaving the house the two prisoners seized hold of him, and Avenall, who said he was a detective, behaved very violently towards him. They dragged him along the street, but on reaching 62, Berners-street, where he was in the habit of delivering goods, he managed to make his escape into the basement of that house, where he hid himself. His assailants however, followed him and Avenall went after him into the kitchen, where a number of young women were at tea, and told them that "Jack the Ripper" was in the house. This naturally created great consternation among the girls, who, however, became somewhat pacified when they saw the prosecutor, who was immediately recognized as the man that had been in the habit of bringing oil, candles, soap, and other articles to the house. When the prisoner Avenall found the prosecutor, he seized him by the throat, notwithstanding the protests of Madame Muntz, the landlady of the house, and dragged him up the steps out of the premises. A constable then arrived upon the scene, and on Avenall seeing the officer he exclaimed, "Here he is; I have got him. This is ’Jack the Ripper,’ and I mean to take him to the police-station. If the police can’t do their duty I can." Eventually both the prisoners were taken into custody.
The defence was that, noticing that the prosecutor looked unhappy, they wished to see where he lived, as someone suggested that he was "Jack the Ripper," and as he would not tell them where he resided. When he entered the residence of Madame Muntz they merely followed, as they knew he did not live there, with the object of telling the landlady that there was a strange man in the house.
Avenall was now further charged with falsely representing himself to be a metropolitan police-constable.
The prosecutor, recalled, deposed that since the affair he had been very ill, and a doctor had certified that he was suffering from nervousness, insomnia, and depression, the result of shock to the system.
Mr. Arthur Newton, solicitor, who appeared for the defence, said the explanation of the affair was that the prisoners really believed that the prosecutor was the real "Jack the Ripper," and that they were therefore justified in taking the accused to the station. His clients were hard-working, respectable men, and were willing to make compensation as far as their means could allow.
The magistrate said he thought as far as the assault was concerned it was one that might be settled by a civil action if the prosecutor desired such a course to be taken.
The prosecutor intimated that he would prefer the magistrate to deal with the case.
The magistrate said that if people took upon themselves the responsibility of making practical jokes they must put up with the consequences. In the present excited state of public feeling it was a highly dangerous thing to drag a man about in the streets saying that he was the Whitechapel murderer, and such conduct might actually lead to loss of life.
In reply to Mr. Newton, the prosecutor said that since the affair he met at the house of Madame Muntz the prison Avenall, who told him that he was very sorry for what had happened, and that it was merely a frolic. Avenall offered him 10s. By way of compensation, but he refused to take such a small amount. He did not say that he wanted 50£.
Mr. Newton said the prisoners were willing to give the prosecutor a sovereign each.
In answer to the magistrate, the constable who arrested the prisoners said that when Avenall was taken into custody he did not say that he was a detective of the police force. He merely said he was a private detective.
Mr. Hannay said, as regarded the charge of personating a detective the evidence was somewhat conflicting, and he would therefore dismiss it. With respect to the assault he must, however, inflict the full penalty, as although the prisoners did not actually beat the prosecutor, they so frightened him as to cause him to become ill, and to get into a state of nervous depression. There was no reasonable ground for the accused acting as they had, and they would each have to pay a fine of 5£., with the alternative of one month’s imprisonment. Half the fines - 5£. - would be given to the prosecutor by way of compensation.
At Dover Police Court yesterday a charge against a Swedish seaman for riotous conduct was heard, and created great interest owing to the circumstances under which it was preferred. The man belonged to a Swedish vessel in the harbour, and, as he alleged, he was duped by a woman ashore. He became greatly excited, and having armed himself with a long-bladed knife ran into several houses in the neighbourhood of the pier, threatening to kill all the loose women he met with. Great excitement prevailed, the report having spread that he was the Whitechapel murderer. The police had great difficulty in capturing the man, owing to his extreme violence, and before he could be removed to the police-station he had to be tied down to a barrow. He was followed to the station by hundreds of people. The prisoner was sentenced to fourteen days’ imprisonment.
Louisa Bezenden was charged at the Ramsgate Police Court yesterday with having been disorderly on Saturday night last.
It was stated by the policeman who apprehended her that she chased a number of children with a knife in her hand, crying out that she was a female "Jack the Ripper," and that she would cut their hearts out.
She was sentenced to ten days’ imprisonment.
Mr. Baxter resumed an inquiry yesterday at the Vestry-hall, High-street, Shadwell, into the circumstances attending the death of Florence Annie Hancock, 26, lately residing in Pulross-street, Brixton, whose body was found in the Thames off Wapping on the 9th inst.
George Hancock, a carpenter, on a photograph of the deceased being handed to him, identified it as that of his wife, who left him ten years ago. He had not seen her since she left him.
Alice Land stated that she was a servant in the employ of the deceased. On Oct. 22 the deceased left the house, saying she was going to meet a friend at Liverpool-street. She never returned. The friend referred to used to call at the house once a week, generally on the Wednesday evening. Witness did not become alarmed when her mistress did not return, as she thought she had perhaps gone away for a holiday. When Mr. Paris called last Monday he asked for "Florrie." When told that she was missing, he said, "I shall be at Liverpool-street, station on Wednesday; meet me there and tell me all about it." The witness met him and told him that the deceased had been found drowned in the river. He seemed much upset.
Beatrice Williams, a widow, said she identified the photographs as those of a friend of hers. On Monday, Oct. 22, the witness met her at Charingcross and had a drink with her in the "Northumberland." They were there at 25 minutes to twelve, when the witness left to catch her train. The deceased was then in the company of a strange gentleman. She was a girl of a most lively disposition, and would not be likely to commit suicide. When The witness left her she had a small gold chain, which was attached to her brooch, round her neck. Early in the evening deceased had told witness that she had see her friend who allowed her 5£. A week, and that she had had a few words with him, but she said "I received my money just the same." The deceased had some money, and asked the witness to go home with her, but she refused. The chain produced was not the one deceased had round her neck when the witness left her. The gentleman deceased was with was a tall, fair man with heavy moustaches.
Mr. J. Pain deposed that he knew the deceased. He had not made her any allowance. He had known her for three years, and last saw her alive on the 22nd of October, at Broad-street station. There was no disagreement between them; in fact the witness told her he might see her on the Wednesday following. The deceased used to meet him at different times. It was incorrect to say that he allowed her 5£. A-week. The last time he saw her she was in her usual spirits. He had not complained of her conduct with other men, although he had seen her with one or two. He gave her no money on that day. On the 22nd she left him at 20 minutes past five o’clock, and he did not see her alive again. He had no reason to believe she would commit suicide. On the Wednesday following his parting with the deceased he left London for the Lake District, and afterwards went to the Isle of Man and Ireland, and only returned on the 7th inst. On one or two occasions the deceased had said she wished she were dead.
Mr. M’Coy, divisional surgeon, who made a post-mortem examination of the body, said that there were no marks of external violence. The body had been in the water fully a fortnight, and perhaps more. The organs generally were healthy. She was not enceinte. The cause of death was asphyxia from drowning.
Inspector Francis, of the Thames Police, stated that every inquiry had been made in the hope of discovering how the woman came into the water, but without result. No one saw her after Beatrice Williams left her on Monday, Oct. 22.
The jury returned a verdict that the deceased was found drowned, but how she came into the water there was not sufficient evidence to show.
Last evening Mr. John Troutbeck, the coroner for Westminster, held an inquiry at the St. George’s Hospital into the circumstances attending the death of Richard Brown, 36, until recently a constable in the Metropolitan Police, stationed in the E division at Hunter-street, who committed suicide by shooting himself with a revolver in Hyde Park on the 16th inst.
Mr. Louis Sidney Torre, of 3, Percy-square, King’s cross, said he had known The deceased for about ten years, and last saw him alive on Tuesday, the 13th, when he was at the witness’s house. He then seemed rather despondent, but complained of no trouble. He said he had resigned his situation in the police force, and added that he was going either to Mexico or to Africa. He was a sober, steady man, and said he had saved about 130£. With the exception of the witness, who was his uncle, he had no relations,
Inspector Austin Askew, of Hunter-street police-station, stated that the deceased was guilty of slight breach of discipline, and with others appeared before the Assistant -Commissioner, who allowed him to resign in order that he might preserve his testimonial, and he left the service last Tuesday. He joined the forces on August 16, 1886, and was a steady, respectable man, and did his duty fairly well.
A juryman said he thought it was of vital importance that he and his colleagues should know what the breach of discipline was.
Inspector Askew asked the coroner whether he thought it is a question he should answer; he had to consider the position of the Assistant-Commissioner and the police force at large.
The coroner said he was of opinion that it was a very fair, and that it should be answered.
Inspector Askew said the deceased ought to have gone on parade for night duty at a quarter to ten, and he neglected to do so.
The coroner expressed his opinion that the commissioner acted perfectly right in calling upon the man to resign. He could not have done otherwise.
Police-constable Duncan M’Kenzie. 593 A, stated that he was on duty outside Hyde Park police-station at midday on Friday, when he heard a whistle blow. It sounded like a policeman’s whistle. Upon going along the footpath leading from the Serpentine he saw the deceased sitting on a seat, with the revolver produced tightly clasped in his right hand, and blood flowing from his mouth. He was removed to the hospital. No whistle was found. The deceased was about 50 yards from the station.
William Richards, a pawnbroker’s assistant, of 34, High Holborn, deposed that Brown came there and purchased the revolver on Thursday, saying he was going to shoot a match with a fellow constable. It was a pin fire, with six chambers. He loaded the weapon outside the shop.
Harris Bloom, a dealer, of 166, Drury-lane, said that the deceased had supper with him on Thursday night. He showed him the revolver, which he said he had bought for protection, as he was going to California.
Mr. F. W. Parker, house surgeon, stated that the unfortunate man died three hours after his admission, the bullet having entered his mouth and penetrated his brain.
The jury returned a verdict to the effect that "the deceased committed suicide while temporarily insane."
The remains of Mary Janet Kelly, the victim of the Dorset-street murder, were interred yesterday in the Leytonstone Cemetery. The funeral was witnessed by a large concourse of people.
At the Marlborough-street Police Court yesterday two men, named Avenall and Moore, were charged, on remand, with disorderly conduct, and assaulting a man named Leeke, and the former was further charged with pretending to be a police detective. The accused saw the prosecutor in a public-house, someone suggested that the man was "Jack the Ripper," and on his leaving the house the two prisoners followed him, seized hold of him, and dragged him along the street. In Berners-street, Oxford-street, the prosecutor escaped and fled into a lady’s house. There he was followed by the prisoners, and great consternation was caused to a number of ladies in the house. The prosecutor was known to them, being in the habit of bringing goods, but the prisoners, notwithstanding this, dragged the man out of the house. They were then arrested. The defence was that it was a frolic, and a small compensation was offered. Mr. Hannay, the magistrate, dismissed the charge against Avenall of personating a detective, but fined prisoners in the sum of 5£. Each, half the amount to go to the prosecutor.