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The Doctor
02-18-2012, 07:15 PM
I was reading about the Kosminski suspect, and when i read about the witness that refused to testify that the person he saw was JTR. I was thinking, would the Police not look at that as an obstruction offence?

Monty
02-18-2012, 07:39 PM
Indeed Doctor,

He wouldn't have been allowed to refuse. Prejury if he did so an open to a prosecution.

However its not truly ascertained if the testimony was legal or merely informal.

Monty
:)

Henry Flower
03-09-2012, 04:04 AM
Something I've always wondered - (and forgive me if it's covered in Rob House's book, which I have not yet had the pleasure of reading): if the police had genuinely been fairly sure that they had the Ripper, though not the evidence to convict him, would they not at least have made some public statement to that effect?

They didn't have to name names, or risk prejudicing any future trial. A statement saying, essentially, something like we believe that a man currently caged in an asylum is very likely to have been the Ripper, a witness has identified him as looking very similar to a suspect seen with one of the victims, we continue to investigate the suspect in the hope that conclusive evidence can be found, we can't say more than that at this time.

The public and the Stead media gave the police a thorough kicking over their failures regarding the Ripper, and it seems to me almost beyond comprehension that the police could have been privately satisfied that they had the man, that he was safely caged - and yet they didn't see fit to attempt even the slightest salvaging of their own reputation by making any kind of public statement to that effect at the time, waiting instead until about twenty years had passed before mentioning any of this in private interviews, or little-read memoirs, or personal memoranda.

Anyone else troubled by this aspect?

Lord-z
03-09-2012, 04:21 AM
I don't think police are allowed to do that, neither then or now, publically accusing a man against whom they had no real evidence, regardless of how sure they were of his guilt, even if they don't publically announce his name.

Errata
03-09-2012, 06:32 AM
I don't think police are allowed to do that, neither then or now, publically accusing a man against whom they had no real evidence, regardless of how sure they were of his guilt, even if they don't publically announce his name.

I know Feds can, they give interviews about serial killers trying to piss them off so that they will contact law enforcement by saying that they believe the man in question was bullied as a child, ate his own feces and desperately wants to have sex with his mother. I don't know if it works, but it's been done.

PaulB
03-09-2012, 09:39 AM
Something I've always wondered - (and forgive me if it's covered in Rob House's book, which I have not yet had the pleasure of reading): if the police had genuinely been fairly sure that they had the Ripper, though not the evidence to convict him, would they not at least have made some public statement to that effect?

They didn't have to name names, or risk prejudicing any future trial. A statement saying, essentially, something like we believe that a man currently caged in an asylum is very likely to have been the Ripper, a witness has identified him as looking very similar to a suspect seen with one of the victims, we continue to investigate the suspect in the hope that conclusive evidence can be found, we can't say more than that at this time.

The public and the Stead media gave the police a thorough kicking over their failures regarding the Ripper, and it seems to me almost beyond comprehension that the police could have been privately satisfied that they had the man, that he was safely caged - and yet they didn't see fit to attempt even the slightest salvaging of their own reputation by making any kind of public statement to that effect at the time, waiting instead until about twenty years had passed before mentioning any of this in private interviews, or little-read memoirs, or personal memoranda.

Anyone else troubled by this aspect?

The police in the Yorkshire Ripper case were hauled over the coals for announcing they had caught the murder before he had been tried and convicted of the crime, even though they had a confession, because it is a fundamental tenet of the law that a person is innocent until proven guilty. However, it is not uncommon for policemen to claim in their memoirs that the perpetrator of a crime was known or suspected.

As for the witness refusing to give evidence, it goes without saying that he could be subpoenaed to testify, and it may be that the police intended to do just that, although it is entirely possible that they first intended to try persuading him by employing more gentle coercion to avoid having to rely on the testimony of a "hostile witness", but - for whatever reason, possibly habeus corpus - they returned him to his brother's house and maintained 24-hour surveillance, but the suspect was committed to an asylum before charges were brought. Once certified insane the suspect would almost certainly have been deemed unfit to plead and there would and possibly could have been no trial.

DVV
03-09-2012, 11:16 AM
they returned him to his brother's house and maintained 24-hour surveillance

Hi Paul, that's what I can't believe. I can't imagine Jack the Ripper "returned to his brother's house", even under 24-hour surveillance.
There may have been a Jewish suspect put under surveillance, this is of course possible - but not somebody that could have been proven to be the Ripper - be it only with French police methods.

Monty
03-09-2012, 11:24 AM
It seems to me that, if this I'd had taken place, they had little else for a case.

Suitable to defend themselves or not.

Straw grasping in my opinion. However, it just goes to show the investigation was still ongoing.

Monty
:)

Jonathan H
03-09-2012, 11:38 AM
I want to thank Paul B, and co., for all they did to facilitate the publication of the full 'Aberconway', having thanked him privately -- and also thanked him, and co., in an upcoming article about the revelatory document in the third issue of 'The New Independent Review'.

To Henry Flower

Arguably, going public with their conclusions about the Ripper, is exactly what senior policemen did, remembering that the investigation -- from the police point of view -- lasted many, frustrating years and was not, initially, restricted to 1888, and a brief 'autumn of terror'.

That's a later notion.

In the aftermath of the investigation of William Grant (aka Grainger) as the Ripper in early 1895, which apparently came to nothing (despite a witness allegedly affirming to Grant) and, subsequently, 'The Pall Mall Gazette' of May 7th reported the following:

'The theory entitled to most respect, because it was presumably based upon the best knowledge, was that of Chief Inspector Swanson, the officer who was associated with the investigation of all the murders, and Mr. Swanson believed the crimes to have been the work of a man who is now dead.'

Perhaps Swanson was speaking theoretically?

Yet Sir Robert Anderson, his friend and superior, confirmed that there was a specific prime suspect, also in May of 1895, as Major Arthur Griffiths (under his pseudonym Alfred Aylmer) wrote the following in 'The Windsor Magazine' :

'Much dissatisfaction was vented upon Mr. Anderson at the utterly abortive efforts to discover the perpetrator of the Whitechapel murders. He has himself a perfectly plausible theory that 'Jack the Ripper' was a homicidal maniac, temporarily at large, whose hideous career was cut short by committal to an asylum'.

In 1947 came belated confirmation that Swanson and Anderson were seemingly talking about the same suspect, with the latter's son's biography of his father:

'Scotland Yard, however, had no doubt that the criminal was eventually found. The only person who ever had a good view of the murderer identified the suspect without hesitation the instant he was confronted with him ; but he refused to give evidence. Sir Robert states as a fact that the man was an alien from Eastern Europe, and believed that he died in an asylum.'

In 1903, Frederic Abberline, from retirement, claimed that the wife poisoner, George Chapman, was almost certainly the fiend -- though the ex-detective was not claiming that this was anything but his opinion, and was, of course, not formed before 1903.

In 1913, the retiring Sir Melville Macnaghten claimed that the Ripper was a 'remarkable man' -- about whom he claimed to have 'a clear idea' as to his identity -- and who committed suicide twenty four hours, or so, after the Kelly murder. Macnaghten added, in 1914, that the information which led to this 'conclusion' was unknown to officialdom until 'some years after' the 'Protean' sexual maniac took his own life, when Sir Melville finally laid his 'ghost' to rest -- as Scotland Yard were still hunting 'Jack' for several fruitless years.

I am just arguing that we have an embarrassment of riches when it comes to significant police figures claiming the case was solved, and that Anderson, as a primary source, was the most up-front about putting his name to such a public claim -- as soon as, I believe, it came to his attention in 1895.

DVV
03-09-2012, 12:01 PM
It seems to me that, if this I'd had taken place, they had little else for a case.
Suitable to defend themselves or not.
Monty
:)

Hi Neil, entirely agreed.

PaulB
03-09-2012, 05:12 PM
Hi Paul, that's what I can't believe. I can't imagine Jack the Ripper "returned to his brother's house", even under 24-hour surveillance.
There may have been a Jewish suspect put under surveillance, this is of course possible - but not somebody that could have been proven to be the Ripper - be it only with French police methods.

It is unbelievable, or at least it stretches credulity to breaking point and perhaps beyond, but someone who presumably knew more than we do tells us that it was what happened. So, maybe they didn't think the suspect was Jack the Ripper. Maybe the belief that he was Jack was reached after he'd been returned to his brother's house. Maybe they simply couldn't hold on to him any longer. Maybe... So many maybes that what we choose to personally believe or disbelieve in such a state of ignorance is surely neither here nor there; we can be only evaluate the source as objectively as possible and treat the data with due respect and care.

PaulB
03-09-2012, 05:23 PM
It seems to me that, if this I'd had taken place, they had little else for a case.

Suitable to defend themselves or not.

Straw grasping in my opinion. However, it just goes to show the investigation was still ongoing.

Monty
:)

As is maybe, Neil, but sometimes a grasped straw brings the whole haystack with it, and in this case we simply don't know why the police or Anderson or whoever ever heard of "Kosminski" in the first place, let alone ever thought he might be or even possibly could have been Jack the Ripper.

Monty
03-09-2012, 05:31 PM
I was talking in terms of evidence gathering Paul,

Yes. It seems Kosminski, or whomever it was dragged to the seaside home, was a tad special in the authorities eyes.

As far as I'm aware, all the other parades occurred in London. The only justification is if the witness or suspect were not city bound.

Monty
:)

ChrisGeorge
03-09-2012, 05:48 PM
Something I've always wondered - (and forgive me if it's covered in Rob House's book, which I have not yet had the pleasure of reading): if the police had genuinely been fairly sure that they had the Ripper, though not the evidence to convict him, would they not at least have made some public statement to that effect?

They didn't have to name names, or risk prejudicing any future trial. A statement saying, essentially, something like we believe that a man currently caged in an asylum is very likely to have been the Ripper, a witness has identified him as looking very similar to a suspect seen with one of the victims, we continue to investigate the suspect in the hope that conclusive evidence can be found, we can't say more than that at this time.

The public and the Stead media gave the police a thorough kicking over their failures regarding the Ripper, and it seems to me almost beyond comprehension that the police could have been privately satisfied that they had the man, that he was safely caged - and yet they didn't see fit to attempt even the slightest salvaging of their own reputation by making any kind of public statement to that effect at the time, waiting instead until about twenty years had passed before mentioning any of this in private interviews, or little-read memoirs, or personal memoranda.

Anyone else troubled by this aspect?

Just to be clear about it, the police didn't wait twenty years. It was Sir Robert Anderson making the statement in his personal memoirs, tacitly backed up by some private notes his former subordinate Detective Superintendent Swanson made in his own copy of his boss's notes.

Anderson was pointing to what he thought to be a likely suspect and felt that the witness recognized the man but refused to testify. At least that is Anderson's recollection, again backed up by Swanson's marginal notes that there was a suspect named Kosminski who fitted the circumstances that Anderson was describing.

There probably would not have been enough to take the matter to court but Anderson seems, in his own mind, to have provided the answer to the case, and could with satisfaction indicate to his readers that the killer was identified and that the man was "caged in an asylum"

Chris

Henry Flower
03-09-2012, 06:26 PM
Hi Chris, and thanks for the reply. I understand the chronology of what did happen (largely thanks to SPE's superb Seaside Home dissertation at this site), but your answer only serves to underline more strongly the problem I'm having with this story: as you say, the police didn't wait twenty years - they waited indefinitely, there was never any such statement at all; only some hints in personal memoirs, and some personal jottings.

Apart from that - nothing. No relative, no neighbour, no acquaintance, no constable - nobody went public until Anderson's hints in his memoirs? Not one person gave an anonymous tip-off to the press to the effect that Jack the Ripper had likely been identified and was caged? I find that baffling and unconvincing. This was a world-famous case that heaped ridicule on the force. Anderson's patrician BS about the 'traditions of his old department suffering if the suspect were named' - Scotland Yard had taken a good kicking over their failure to bag the Whitechapel murderer.

All of which makes me think that Kozminski was, if anything, merely one of a number of possible suspects, and not a particularly special one; and that his guilt solidified into a 'moral certainty' (to a few) only after sufficient time had passed without further Whitechapel murders, and after he was wrongly believed to be safely dead.

Which leaves rather a sour taste in my mouth. For all we know there was no refusal on Lawende's part - perhaps he genuinely had no great certainty. Maybe he thought Kozminski bore a strong resemblance but could not say anything more definite - which self-serving commissioners later turned into a refusal on ethnic grounds as their excuse for not having brought a suspect to trial in a world-famous murder case...

caz
03-09-2012, 06:42 PM
Or maybe Lawende's reluctance (assuming Lawende was the witness) was based on the fact that not only had he said right at the start that he probably would not recognise the man again, but he hadn't actually seen him do the slightest harm to the woman. For all the witness knew (and this would have applied to Schwartz too, even though he had seen a bit of manhandling with Stride) the man he saw could have gone off home to the missus and the killer could then have seen his opportunity to pounce, with not a soul to witness the approach or the deed. No reasonable fellow would fancy the idea of a man being hanged on that basis, Jew or Gentile.

Love,

Caz
X

ChrisGeorge
03-09-2012, 07:01 PM
Hello Henry

I didn't say that Anderson was right. Rather, I am just reporting what Anderson said in his memoirs. I entirely agree that the story is unsatisfactory and opens up a host of unanswered questions.

In fact, if you look at all the different newspaper stories over the years following 1888, the press carried a myriad different stories of what had become of the Ripper and who he could have been.

Macnaghten and Anderson provided two divergent answers, and because what they were saying is in a sense given credence by the fact that they were senior policemen, presumably they knew what they were writing about. That is the belief of students of the case who put store in what the two men wrote.

For my own part, having studied the Jewish aspects of the case, I am more inclined to think that Anderson was perhaps talking about a generic Jew rather than the unbalanced Polish Jew Aaron Kosminski.

If you listen to the last Rippercast (http://www.casebook.org/podcast/listen.html?id=100), you will hear Martin Fido explain his theory that his study of asylum records leads him to believe that Kosminski was a harmless man and that it was the much more dangerous insane Jew David Cohen who was the man being discussed.

In other words, it could be that the identities of Cohen and Kosminski had got mixed up in Anderson's mind and when he was talking about the attempted identification he meant Cohen and not Kosminski. That's not to say though that Aaron Kosminski might not come under scrutiny and have been treated as a leading suspect as well, so that's where the mix-up might have occurred because there were at least two insane Jews who were in the frame.

All the best

Chris

Henry Flower
03-09-2012, 07:04 PM
That's very true Caz. True to the known facts and very understandable on a human level.

Henry Flower
03-09-2012, 07:09 PM
Thanks Chris - its a while since I read Fido's first Cohen book; it didn't seem wholly convincing (but then, after 120 years of mythologizing, the truth itself might sound disappointing) but it was saner than most suspect books and was full of fascinating stuff. I'll give the podcast a listen - thanks again :)

Scott Nelson
03-09-2012, 07:15 PM
That's not to say though that Aaron Kosminski might not come under scrutiny and have been treated as a leading suspect as well, so that's where the mix-up might have occurred because there were at least two insane Jews who were in the frame.

Both named Aaron.

ChrisGeorge
03-09-2012, 07:21 PM
That's not to say though that Aaron Kosminski might not come under scrutiny and have been treated as a leading suspect as well, so that's where the mix-up might have occurred because there were at least two insane Jews who were in the frame.


Both named Aaron.

Did I say that?

Abby Normal
03-09-2012, 09:30 PM
Hi Chris, and thanks for the reply. I understand the chronology of what did happen (largely thanks to SPE's superb Seaside Home dissertation at this site), but your answer only serves to underline more strongly the problem I'm having with this story: as you say, the police didn't wait twenty years - they waited indefinitely, there was never any such statement at all; only some hints in personal memoirs, and some personal jottings.

Apart from that - nothing. No relative, no neighbour, no acquaintance, no constable - nobody went public until Anderson's hints in his memoirs? Not one person gave an anonymous tip-off to the press to the effect that Jack the Ripper had likely been identified and was caged? I find that baffling and unconvincing. This was a world-famous case that heaped ridicule on the force. Anderson's patrician BS about the 'traditions of his old department suffering if the suspect were named' - Scotland Yard had taken a good kicking over their failure to bag the Whitechapel murderer.

All of which makes me think that Kozminski was, if anything, merely one of a number of possible suspects, and not a particularly special one; and that his guilt solidified into a 'moral certainty' (to a few) only after sufficient time had passed without further Whitechapel murders, and after he was wrongly believed to be safely dead.

Which leaves rather a sour taste in my mouth. For all we know there was no refusal on Lawende's part - perhaps he genuinely had no great certainty. Maybe he thought Kozminski bore a strong resemblance but could not say anything more definite - which self-serving commissioners later turned into a refusal on ethnic grounds as their excuse for not having brought a suspect to trial in a world-famous murder case...

Amen Henry

It all boils down to-If Anderson thought the case was solved by the positive identification of Kosminsky sometime prior to Kosminski's admittance to the asylum in Feb 1891, why did he not share this conviction to anyone in the force (let alone the public) until many years later? The case was still ongoning at the time of the ID. I think its clear that he did not come to his "definitely ascertained fact" until much much later after the alleged ID.

Abby Normal
03-10-2012, 04:40 AM
Amen Henry

It all boils down to-If Anderson thought the case was solved by the positive identification of Kosminsky sometime prior to Kosminski's admittance to the asylum in Feb 1891, why did he not share this conviction to anyone in the force (let alone the public) until many years later? The case was still ongoning at the time of the ID. I think its clear that he did not come to his "definitely ascertained fact" until much much later after the alleged ID.

sayeth the cricket "chirp"

PaulB
03-10-2012, 07:57 AM
Amen Henry

It all boils down to-If Anderson thought the case was solved by the positive identification of Kosminsky sometime prior to Kosminski's admittance to the asylum in Feb 1891, why did he not share this conviction to anyone in the force (let alone the public) until many years later? The case was still ongoning at the time of the ID. I think its clear that he did not come to his "definitely ascertained fact" until much much later after the alleged ID.

How do you know Anderson didn't "share his conviction" with anyone else on the Force?

Abby Normal
03-12-2012, 04:51 PM
How do you know Anderson didn't "share his conviction" with anyone else on the Force?

Hi Paul
i guess i dont know for sure, but the main thing is that nothing was done about it at the time. The ID took place at least several years before Kos was sent to the asylum. If, at this time(the ID) Anderson really thought the case was solved it was before Kos was officially declared insane, correct? So the excuse could not have been well we cant legally charge an insane person since there was no hope of conviction. And if there was an official diagnosis of insanity before the admittance to the asylum (Say at the time he was sent to the workhouse) then why even do the ID?

And in any case if you think you have Jack the Ripper at last, when and where he is declared insane should not really matter if you think it is "a definitely ascertained fact" because any police official with an ounce of gumption would make a charge and fight it out in court. At least it would be on record.

of course if Anderson did not come to his definetly ascertained fact until many years later after they had lost track of Kos, which i think seems rather obvious, then his actions, or inactions at the time make sense.

Fleetwood Mac
03-16-2012, 02:49 AM
Or maybe Lawende's reluctance (assuming Lawende was the witness) was based on the fact that not only had he said right at the start that he probably would not recognise the man again, but he hadn't actually seen him do the slightest harm to the woman. For all the witness knew (and this would have applied to Schwartz too, even though he had seen a bit of manhandling with Stride) the man he saw could have gone off home to the missus and the killer could then have seen his opportunity to pounce, with not a soul to witness the approach or the deed. No reasonable fellow would fancy the idea of a man being hanged on that basis, Jew or Gentile.

Love,

Caz
X

I wouldn't agree with this Caz.

The man's conscience would have been clear. His testimony would have been no more than I saw this man at this time with a woman who may have been x.

My problem with the identification is that something seems to be missing.

a) Swanson's private notes would suggest that he is recording an event that happened. There is no political gain from notes seen only by him.

b) Swanson states the man in question would have hanged. Would he? Based on a sighting outside of the square with a woman who may have been Eddowes.

c) Does this mean Swanson is talking of some event other than Lawende?

d) Does this mean he is talking of Schwarz?

e) Or, my favoured interpretation: the ID did take place, but the witness wasn't wasn't Lawende, nor Schwarz.

harry
03-16-2012, 03:42 AM
A question for anyone.Wasn't it then,and isn't it now,that a court decides if a person is fit to stand trial.My recollection of a person that would fit such a description was Straffen.

Abby Normal
03-16-2012, 04:35 PM
A question for anyone.Wasn't it then,and isn't it now,that a court decides if a person is fit to stand trial.My recollection of a person that would fit such a description was Straffen.

Hi harry
I beleive you are correct. A Dr would be the one to declare him legally insane, but the court would decide about a trial. If he was declared insane before a charge, then I think the court could also have him examined by a court appointed Dr, but not 100% sure on this. I also, would like to hear more about the process on this from someone who knows. I think the excuse that they did not charge Kos because he was insane and had no hope of a conviction is a rather flimsy one. As I said before, at the very least, it would be on record.

I mean we are talking about a world famous serial murder case in which the public were scared and outraged and the police were under enormous pressure to solve the case and a top police official is claiming the case was solved.

Carrotty Nell
03-16-2012, 08:04 PM
e) Or, my favoured interpretation: the ID did take place, but the witness wasn't wasn't Lawende, nor Schwarz.

I'm puzzled about one reference in the Marginalia. 'And after this identification which suspect knew no more murders of this kind took place in London'. Is this a cessation theory on Swanson's part? If so, it doesn't quite make sense.

This cannot refer to Suspect’s reaction to the identification which took place at the Seaside Home. He was returned from thence to his relative’s house where he was watched night and day for the short duration before he was committed to the asylum. Suspect could not have committed any further murders had he wanted to. This cannot be what Swanson means.

What I believe Swanson means therefore is that ‘Suspect ceased killing because he knew an individual who could subsequently identify him had seen him in the act of committing a murder (or bending over the body etc).’

We know Swanson’s Witness was male and Jewish. Lawende, Levy, Harris and Schwartz are all ruled out however because they were all witnesses from the night of the double event. If, in Swanson’s theory, Suspect ceased killing because he was afraid Lawende/Levy/Harris or Schwartz could identify him, that would leave the Kelly murder unaccounted for. We have no reason to believe Swanson or any other contemporary divorced Kelly from the series – that’s a modern idea.

I would like to posit the existence of Witness Jacob X from the night of the Kelly murder. Let us suppose Jacob X arrives in Miller’s Court sometime around 4.30-5.00 for whatever purpose, nefarious or otherwise. He is attracted by the fire in Kelly’s room which would probably have been visible glowing behind the coat-curtain. He looks into the room and sees Jack in the flame-light in mid business. Jacob flees in panic.

Jacob later comes forward as a witness. He is the most significant witness so far. The police decide to keep him secret – the press, remember, had been less than helpful in their dealings with another important witness on a previous occasion. It may even be that the police appear to give so much credence to George Hutchinson precisely because he acts as a decoy – deflecting press and other undesirable attention away from Jacob X.
So no trace of Jacob X has survived in the police records? So what! Neither has any trace of the Polish-Jew Suspect – we can only infer his existence from two or three oblique sources.

caz
03-16-2012, 08:42 PM
I wouldn't agree with this Caz.

The man's conscience would have been clear. His testimony would have been no more than I saw this man at this time with a woman who may have been x.


Fair enough, FM, but it's a bit black and white. It would have been only too human if a witness in those circumstances did not quite trust the justice system of the day not to read too much into such a sighting and possibly hang the wrong man as a result. After all, why did he think he was being asked to identify the 'suspect' if what he saw was not going to be used against the man?

Love,

Caz
X

PaulB
03-16-2012, 09:51 PM
Hi Paul
i guess i dont know for sure, but the main thing is that nothing was done about it at the time. The ID took place at least several years before Kos was sent to the asylum. If, at this time(the ID) Anderson really thought the case was solved it was before Kos was officially declared insane, correct? So the excuse could not have been well we cant legally charge an insane person since there was no hope of conviction. And if there was an official diagnosis of insanity before the admittance to the asylum (Say at the time he was sent to the workhouse) then why even do the ID?

No. What we appear to be told is that the suspect was sent for identification and then returned to his brother's house where 24-hour surveillance was maintained until within a very short time he was taken by his family and duly certified insane.

And in any case if you think you have Jack the Ripper at last, when and where he is declared insane should not really matter if you think it is "a definitely ascertained fact" because any police official with an ounce of gumption would make a charge and fight it out in court. At least it would be on record.

Well, one might suppose so, but the reality is that it's unlikely that someone certified insane would ever get into court in the first place. Had the charges been brought before the suspect was certified then the police could have laid out their case before the magistrate and the suspect's fitness to plead then been assessed. Had that happened then the police would have got their evidence on record. But once the suspect was certified insane then he would almost automatically have been deemed unfit to plead even before the case got within sniffng distance of the court.

of course if Anderson did not come to his definetly ascertained fact until many years later after they had lost track of Kos, which i think seems rather obvious, then his actions, or inactions at the time make sense.

Well, I guess they would, but we don't know that Anderson came to his conclusions many years after the event, nor is obvious that they'd lost track of Kosminski, but it creates a complicating element in an already peculiar enough scenario which is in itself simple enough.

PaulB
03-16-2012, 10:19 PM
A question for anyone.Wasn't it then,and isn't it now,that a court decides if a person is fit to stand trial.My recollection of a person that would fit such a description was Straffen.

The law in the 1800s appears to be fairly simple on this point: if a person was deemed incapable of understanding and following the trial then a jury would be empaneled to decide on the point and if they so decided the person would be kept in custody until Her Majesty’s pleasure - i.e. forever. There are two good examples of the process in action, that of David Cohen and that of Thomas Cutbush. Any trial of the Ripper suspect would have followed those lines, but if, prior to such a "trial" a doctor had examined the person and determined that he was insane then the jury would accept the medical evidence unless it was contested. In the case of Aron Kosminski it is doubtful if it would have been as he had been certified insane, his family had taken him to be certified, and as far as we can tell his behaviour marked him out as insane. Straffen, though, does break that rule and I have often wondered about that.

Abby Normal
03-19-2012, 06:06 PM
No. What we appear to be told is that the suspect was sent for identification and then returned to his brother's house where 24-hour surveillance was maintained until within a very short time he was taken by his family and duly certified insane.



Well, one might suppose so, but the reality is that it's unlikely that someone certified insane would ever get into court in the first place. Had the charges been brought before the suspect was certified then the police could have laid out their case before the magistrate and the suspect's fitness to plead then been assessed. Had that happened then the police would have got their evidence on record. But once the suspect was certified insane then he would almost automatically have been deemed unfit to plead even before the case got within sniffng distance of the court.



Well, I guess they would, but we don't know that Anderson came to his conclusions many years after the event, nor is obvious that they'd lost track of Kosminski, but it creates a complicating element in an already peculiar enough scenario which is in itself simple enough.

Hi Paul
Thanks for the response.

What we appear to be told is that the suspect was sent for identification and then returned to his brother's house where 24-hour surveillance was maintained until within a very short time he was taken by his family and duly certified insane.

If he was not certified insane until after the ID and after the 24 hour surveillance (I beleive the quote was ...where he was watched day and night) then it seems that there was at least several days, more probably weeks, that Kos was being watched-plenty of time to charge him (before he was certified insane) if Anderson thought at that time the case was solved, no?

Had the charges been brought before the suspect was certified then the police could have laid out their case before the magistrate and the suspect's fitness to plead then been assessed. Had that happened then the police would have got their evidence on record.

Exactly-so why didn't Anderson have him charged immediately-- before he was declared insane? As we both said, at the very least it would be on record.

Well, I guess they would, but we don't know that Anderson came to his conclusions many years after the event,

IMHO it seems he did come to this conclusion many years later-my main point with all of this being that if he did (I think its obvious) then it diminishes the significance of his "definitely ascertained fact".

I have no problem with Kos as a suspect. I actually must accept him as viable for the fact that 3 senior police mention him and for a possible ID by a witness. However, i have a problem with Anderson saying the case was solved and his "definitely ascertained fact" coming any time other than many years later-which of course dimishes his reliability and therefor Kos's candidicy for being the ripper.

PaulB
03-19-2012, 07:18 PM
Hi Paul
Thanks for the response.

What we appear to be told is that the suspect was sent for identification and then returned to his brother's house where 24-hour surveillance was maintained until within a very short time he was taken by his family and duly certified insane.

If he was not certified insane until after the ID and after the 24 hour surveillance (I beleive the quote was ...where he was watched day and night) then it seems that there was at least several days, more probably weeks, that Kos was being watched-plenty of time to charge him (before he was certified insane) if Anderson thought at that time the case was solved, no?


From what we're told there would appear to be no grounds for inferring that any great interval separated the identification from the committal and I'd have thought no more than a couple of days.

Had the charges been brought before the suspect was certified then the police could have laid out their case before the magistrate and the suspect's fitness to plead then been assessed. Had that happened then the police would have got their evidence on record.

Exactly-so why didn't Anderson have him charged immediately-- before he was declared insane? As we both said, at the very least it would be on record.

Well, I don't know why they didn't, but they didn't. Maybe because they were constrained by habeus corpus to release the suspect or charge him and took the former course while they put pressure on the witness or otherwise sought to strengthen their case.

Well, I guess they would, but we don't know that Anderson came to his conclusions many years after the event,

IMHO it seems he did come to this conclusion many years later-my main point with all of this being that if he did (I think its obvious) then it diminishes the significance of his "definitely ascertained fact".

Well, I think you have to argue fairly strongly that it is obvious that Anderson made up his mind "many" years after the identification. He was arguably dropping broad hints as early as 1895 and I know of no reason for supposing that it was at that time a recently reached decision.

I have no problem with Kos as a suspect. I actually must accept him as viable for the fact that 3 senior police mention him and for a possible ID by a witness. However, i have a problem with Anderson saying the case was solved and his "definitely ascertained fact" coming any time other than many years later-which of course dimishes his reliability and therefor Kos's candidicy for being the ripper.

Actually, to be pedantic but precise, what Anderson actually says is that it was a definitely ascertained fact that the suspect was a Polish Jew. We all share your problem, though. It is undeniably a conundrum of a story. I have to say, though, that Anderson's character seems to me, at least as far as the secular side is concerned, that he wasn't given to sober reflection over time, but given to making a snap decision and thereafter stubbornly resisting any temptation to change it.

Abby Normal
03-20-2012, 05:26 PM
From what we're told there would appear to be no grounds for inferring that any great interval separated the identification from the committal and I'd have thought no more than a couple of days.



Well, I don't know why they didn't, but they didn't. Maybe because they were constrained by habeus corpus to release the suspect or charge him and took the former course while they put pressure on the witness or otherwise sought to strengthen their case.



Well, I think you have to argue fairly strongly that it is obvious that Anderson made up his mind "many" years after the identification. He was arguably dropping broad hints as early as 1895 and I know of no reason for supposing that it was at that time a recently reached decision.



Actually, to be pedantic but precise, what Anderson actually says is that it was a definitely ascertained fact that the suspect was a Polish Jew. We all share your problem, though. It is undeniably a conundrum of a story. I have to say, though, that Anderson's character seems to me, at least as far as the secular side is concerned, that he wasn't given to sober reflection over time, but given to making a snap decision and thereafter stubbornly resisting any temptation to change it.

Hi Paul
Thanks for the informative response. Your thought about delaying a charge after the ID makes sense, i suppose-i had not thought of that. Perhaps then he was certified and after they found that out they realized a charge would be futile.


Actually, to be pedantic but precise, what Anderson actually says is that it was a definitely ascertained fact that the suspect was a Polish Jew

But he also said that undetected crimes were rare in London, and that the ripper case was not one of them and he said he was tempted to name the culprit if not for the fear of libel, so he had a specific person (Kos) in mind when he said it.

Thanks again for the reply.

Bridewell
03-20-2012, 07:36 PM
Or, my favoured interpretation: the ID did take place, but the witness wasn't wasn't Lawende, nor Schwarz.

Mine too, Fleetwood. Do you have any particular individual in mind?

Regards, Bridewell

Bridewell
03-20-2012, 07:54 PM
I'm puzzled about one reference in the Marginalia. 'And after this identification which suspect knew no more murders of this kind took place in London'. Is this a cessation theory on Swanson's part? If so, it doesn't quite make sense.

This cannot refer to Suspect’s reaction to the identification which took place at the Seaside Home. He was returned from thence to his relative’s house where he was watched night and day for the short duration before he was committed to the asylum. Suspect could not have committed any further murders had he wanted to. This cannot be what Swanson means.

What I believe Swanson means therefore is that ‘Suspect ceased killing because he knew an individual who could subsequently identify him had seen him in the act of committing a murder (or bending over the body etc).’

We know Swanson’s Witness was male and Jewish. Lawende, Levy, Harris and Schwartz are all ruled out however because they were all witnesses from the night of the double event. If, in Swanson’s theory, Suspect ceased killing because he was afraid Lawende/Levy/Harris or Schwartz could identify him, that would leave the Kelly murder unaccounted for. We have no reason to believe Swanson or any other contemporary divorced Kelly from the series – that’s a modern idea.

I would like to posit the existence of Witness Jacob X from the night of the Kelly murder. Let us suppose Jacob X arrives in Miller’s Court sometime around 4.30-5.00 for whatever purpose, nefarious or otherwise. He is attracted by the fire in Kelly’s room which would probably have been visible glowing behind the coat-curtain. He looks into the room and sees Jack in the flame-light in mid business. Jacob flees in panic.

Jacob later comes forward as a witness. He is the most significant witness so far. The police decide to keep him secret – the press, remember, had been less than helpful in their dealings with another important witness on a previous occasion. It may even be that the police appear to give so much credence to George Hutchinson precisely because he acts as a decoy – deflecting press and other undesirable attention away from Jacob X.
So no trace of Jacob X has survived in the police records? So what! Neither has any trace of the Polish-Jew Suspect – we can only infer his existence from two or three oblique sources.

Hi Nell,

While there's no evidence for this, I quite like it as a theory. It would explain quite a lot, especially the role of Hutchinson, of whom we know so very little. (Why is that?)

I'm brainstorming now, so the flow may not be too good.

What if your theoretical Jacob X was Hutchinson & he did more than his statement says he did? Would he really wait as long as he claimed he did without trying to take a sneaky look through the window? "Hutchinson the Peeping Tom" would make more sense than "Hutchinson The Man Who Stands For Ages Opposite Millers Court, Just Waiting For Someone To Emerge". It would also explain the improbable amount of detail he supplied in his description if he saw the man, not under street-lighting, but by the light of an open fire. The police seem to have set quite a lot of store by this description, without any logical reason for doing so, on the information given. Trying to (a) lull the killer into a false sense of security and/or (b) give the witness a measure of protection perhaps? After all, Abberline was no fool, despite claims to the contrary, and was of the opinion that GH wasn't lying.

Don't shoot! I'm not saying that's how it was. Just speculatin' is all!

Regards, Bridewell

Abby Normal
03-21-2012, 12:00 AM
Hi Nell,

While there's no evidence for this, I quite like it as a theory. It would explain quite a lot, especially the role of Hutchinson, of whom we know so very little. (Why is that?)

I'm brainstorming now, so the flow may not be too good.

What if your theoretical Jacob X was Hutchinson & he did more than his statement says he did? Would he really wait as long as he claimed he did without trying to take a sneaky look through the window? "Hutchinson the Peeping Tom" would make more sense than "Hutchinson The Man Who Stands For Ages Opposite Millers Court, Just Waiting For Someone To Emerge". It would also explain the improbable amount of detail he supplied in his description if he saw the man, not under street-lighting, but by the light of an open fire. The police seem to have set quite a lot of store by this description, without any logical reason for doing so, on the information given. Trying to (a) lull the killer into a false sense of security and/or (b) give the witness a measure of protection perhaps? After all, Abberline was no fool, despite claims to the contrary, and was of the opinion that GH wasn't lying.

Don't shoot! I'm not saying that's how it was. Just speculatin' is all!

Regards, Bridewell

Hi Bridewell.
i am quoting CN's relevant part:

If, in Swanson’s theory, Suspect ceased killing because he was afraid Lawende/Levy/Harris or Schwartz could identify him, that would leave the Kelly murder unaccounted for. We have no reason to believe Swanson or any other contemporary divorced Kelly from the series – that’s a modern idea.

The ID took place well after the Kelly murder.

Fleetwood Mac
03-21-2012, 02:49 PM
Mine too, Fleetwood. Do you have any particular individual in mind?

Regards, Bridewell

Hello Bridewell,

I think the important statement reagrding the witness is this: "the only person who ever had a good view of the murderer".

I'd imagine the consensus is that Lawende's sighting can not be deemed to be a good view of a/any murderer given the situation, i.e. 10 minutes before a murder, possibly Eddowes etc.

Anderson's words make a clear distinction between the principles of what constitutes a suspect and what constitutes a murderer, i.e. the suspect is a suspect because at that juncture there was no hard evidence to link the supect to the murder; 'the murderer' is a statement lacking scope for an alternative view - the man viewed by the witness was undoubtedly the murderer.

So, when Anderson states: "a good view of the murderer", he means someone who was caught in the act or was seen coming out of the alley/square seconds after the murder, i.e. there is/was no room for doubt.

This would exclude Lawende and associates. Schwarz is a better bet assuming his version of events is true - a story lacking confirmation at a busy time of the night, which detracts from the possibility of Schwarz being the witness.

Who are we left with then?

Well, either he/she no longer resides within the files, or we're jumping through hoops to come up with someone.

I'm wondering if there's any room for negotiation on whether or not the witness was Jewish. "The suspect was also a Jew" has been taken to mean the witness was Jewish. Could it mean something else? Could there be some other reason why the witness, a gentile witness, would not want a Jewish man convicted? Could it be for political reasons, e.g. socialist - a decision based on an over-riding political desire for social equality, and in the grand scheme of things the witness deemed it to be detrimental to his cause to have a Jew outed as Jack The Ripper? Could there be another reason why a gentile witness would not testify against a Jew?

On a possible gentile witness, the City PC witness is the best bet for obvious reasons: seaside home, Jack seemingly pressed for time at Mitre Square etc.

Abby Normal
03-21-2012, 04:15 PM
Hello Bridewell,

I think the important statement reagrding the witness is this: "the only person who ever had a good view of the murderer".

I'd imagine the consensus is that Lawende's sighting can not be deemed to be a good view of a/any murderer given the situation, i.e. 10 minutes before a murder, possibly Eddowes etc.

Anderson's words make a clear distinction between the principles of what constitutes a suspect and what constitutes a murderer, i.e. the suspect is a suspect because at that juncture there was no hard evidence to link the supect to the murder; 'the murderer' is a statement lacking scope for an alternative view - the man viewed by the witness was undoubtedly the murderer.

So, when Anderson states: "a good view of the murderer", he means someone who was caught in the act or was seen coming out of the alley/square seconds after the murder, i.e. there is/was no room for doubt.

This would exclude Lawende and associates. Schwarz is a better bet assuming his version of events is true - a story lacking confirmation at a busy time of the night, which detracts from the possibility of Schwarz being the witness.

Who are we left with then?

Well, either he/she no longer resides within the files, or we're jumping through hoops to come up with someone.

I'm wondering if there's any room for negotiation on whether or not the witness was Jewish. "The suspect was also a Jew" has been taken to mean the witness was Jewish. Could it mean something else? Could there be some other reason why the witness, a gentile witness, would not want a Jewish man convicted? Could it be for political reasons, e.g. socialist - a decision based on an over-riding political desire for social equality, and in the grand scheme of things the witness deemed it to be detrimental to his cause to have a Jew outed as Jack The Ripper? Could there be another reason why a gentile witness would not testify against a Jew?

On a possible gentile witness, the City PC witness is the best bet for obvious reasons: seaside home, Jack seemingly pressed for time at Mitre Square etc.

Hi FM
It seems that both suspect and witness were jewish from what both Anderson and Swanson said. Considering its a main point of emphasis for both on why the witness would not swear to it, I think its pretty clear.

So, when Anderson states: "a good view of the murderer", he means someone who was caught in the act or was seen coming out of the alley/square seconds after the murder, i.e. there is/was no room for doubt

Given the higher level police officials propensity in getting many facts wrong when recalling events later in general and Andersons seemingly character trait of "wishful thinking" and exageration, I could see him definitely categorizing lawende or Scwartz as witnesses who 'Got a good view of the murderer".

Abby Normal
03-21-2012, 04:31 PM
From what we're told there would appear to be no grounds for inferring that any great interval separated the identification from the committal and I'd have thought no more than a couple of days.



Well, I don't know why they didn't, but they didn't. Maybe because they were constrained by habeus corpus to release the suspect or charge him and took the former course while they put pressure on the witness or otherwise sought to strengthen their case.



Well, I think you have to argue fairly strongly that it is obvious that Anderson made up his mind "many" years after the identification. He was arguably dropping broad hints as early as 1895 and I know of no reason for supposing that it was at that time a recently reached decision.



Actually, to be pedantic but precise, what Anderson actually says is that it was a definitely ascertained fact that the suspect was a Polish Jew. We all share your problem, though. It is undeniably a conundrum of a story. I have to say, though, that Anderson's character seems to me, at least as far as the secular side is concerned, that he wasn't given to sober reflection over time, but given to making a snap decision and thereafter stubbornly resisting any temptation to change it.

Hi Paul

Well, I don't know why they didn't, but they didn't. Maybe because they were constrained by habeus corpus to release the suspect or charge him and took the former course while they put pressure on the witness or otherwise sought to strengthen their case.

To your point-I had a thought. The whole episode of sending the suspect "with difficulty" for an ID to the seaside home may be indicitive that the police were already having problems with the doctors/work house staff re Kos's sanity issues and what they could do with the suspect (jurisdiction/authority questions?)before they even did the ID. So perhaps the whole insanity/legal problem was already firmly established in Andersons/Swansons minds prior to the ID, which coupled with Kos being later officially "certified insane' sealed the deal for them in terms of the futility of bringing a charge against him.

jason_c
03-21-2012, 04:37 PM
Hi FM
It seems that both suspect and witness were jewish from what both Anderson and Swanson said. Considering its a main point of emphasis for both on why the witness would not swear to it, I think its pretty clear.

So, when Anderson states: "a good view of the murderer", he means someone who was caught in the act or was seen coming out of the alley/square seconds after the murder, i.e. there is/was no room for doubt

Given the higher level police officials propensity in getting many facts wrong when recalling events later in general and Andersons seemingly character trait of "wishful thinking" and exageration, I could see him definitely categorizing lawende or Scwartz as witnesses who 'Got a good view of the murderer".

We have to remember that Lawende's sighting was significant not just in terms of a sighting near Mitre Square and within minutes of the murder. His sighting also tentatively included Eddowes herself with a man.

This still of course does'nt deal with Lawende's statement that he would not recognize the suspect.

Abby Normal
03-21-2012, 04:57 PM
We have to remember that Lawende's sighting was significant not just in terms of a sighting near Mitre Square and within minutes of the murder. His sighting also tentatively included Eddowes herself with a man.

This still of course does'nt deal with Lawende's statement that he would not recognize the suspect.

Hi Jason
But that did not seem to to stop them from using him for later IDs. That coupled with the fact that he may have been viewed by the police as the most reliable witness because he was "respectable" and spoke English (and was at the inquest) to me points to him as the witness in the Kos ID.

jason_c
03-21-2012, 05:08 PM
Hi Jason
But that did not seem to to stop them from using him for later IDs. That coupled with the fact that he may have been viewed by the police as the most reliable witness because he was "respectable" and spoke English (and was at the inquest) to me points to him as the witness in the Kos ID.

I agree. Lawende was possibly the best of "a bad bunch" of witnesses.

Hunter
03-22-2012, 03:47 PM
Despite the caveats presented by Lawende's statement about not recognizing the man again, he is the only witness in this whole series who has corroboration by two other witnesses. This is always of major importance in any police assimilation of witness statements and would not have been unrecognized by Swanson.

He was the best 'of a bad lot' because his sighting was verified by Harris and Levy.

lynn cates
03-22-2012, 04:00 PM
Hello Cris. That's a very good point. Lawende was also not too eager to come forward nor too hesitant. And his testimony was cautious.

All this makes it look genuine.

Cheers.
LC

Fleetwood Mac
03-23-2012, 02:44 AM
Despite the caveats presented by Lawende's statement about not recognizing the man again, he is the only witness in this whole series who has corroboration by two other witnesses. This is always of major importance in any police assimilation of witness statements and would not have been unrecognized by Swanson.

He was the best 'of a bad lot' because his sighting was verified by Harris and Levy.

He may have been the best of a bad known bunch.

He may have had a good look at a man 10 minutes before the murder - by his own admission he didn't.

Regardless, he certainly can not be classed as viewing the murderer with the degree of certainty proposed by Anderson.

It seems that Anderson's witness was not Lawende.

Jonathan H
03-23-2012, 07:12 AM
Joseph Lawende is the witness to a Gentile-featured, sailorish-attired youngish suspect chatting non-menacingly with Eddowes, and who (albeit un-named) apparently said 'no' to Tom Sadler and 'yes' to William Grant.

If the 'Pall Mall Gazette' of 1895 has got this right, Lawende despite the passage of several years fully justfied police faith in his sighting and powers of recall in that he affirmed to a prime, Jack the Ripper suspect.

In the same article, not only is Swanson quoted as saying this is not the Ripper but he has sound knowledge that the real killer is deceased.

How sound? If Lawende said yes to Grant (Grainger) it still did not move them from another suspect who could not be arrested. They preferred a dead man to an eyewitness confirmation of a youngish, thuggish sailor who had been caught red-handed trying to slice up a Whitechapel harlot (his victim lived). No wonder his own lawyer thought that his client was 'Jack'.

But why not CID?

Is it because Anderson had become convinced that the fiend had to be a Polish-Jew protected by his fellow low-life, sectarians, and had made his rigid opinion well know to his colleagues?

And then into his office, at the time of the Grant investigation, springs his insufferable, 'Eton forever' deputy with vital news he has just learned. That an insane Polish-Jew, local to the East End and permanently sectioned back in early 1889 -- and soon after deceased -- was believed by his own family to be the real 'Jack'?

Oh, and he was reportedly guilty of the Sin of Onan too, repeatedly ...

lynn cates
03-23-2012, 02:11 PM
Hello Jonathan. It has always puzzled me that Lawende, in spite of his self confessed likely inability to pick out the "culprit" seen with Kate, was able to do the "No", "Yes" thing, years after the fact.

Is it at all possible that this consisted in some broad terms as, for instance, "Definitely not--too X" for Sadler; but, "Well, I cannot rule him out--possibly" for Grainger?

Cheers.
LC

Nemo
03-23-2012, 02:21 PM
I can't recall where I saw it but I think the witness only said Grainger/Grant was of the same height and build of the suspect

lynn cates
03-23-2012, 03:23 PM
Hello Nemo. If true, that would explain much.

Cheers.
LC

DVV
03-23-2012, 04:06 PM
No, Grainger was taller.
I don't know why his lawyer thought he was JtR, but the sequence of events has nothing to do with the Ripper MO.
It's very similar to the Sadler case.

Jonathan H
03-23-2012, 05:02 PM
To Nemo

I think you are confusing what George Sims wrote about the [non-existent] beat cop seeing the Polish Jew suspect some time later and thinking there were only certain features similar: the 1907 piece for Lloyds-Weekly.

Whereas the un-named Lawende apparently said, yes, it's him when confronted with Grant.

To Lynn

I think that the cops just put it about that Lawende could not really be sure as they assumed that the Ripper read the papers. They wanted to create a false sense of security. Their actions and Lawende's actions suggest they regarded him as the best witness, and the only witness worth wheeling in and out.

Why not -- if he affirmed to Grant?

The modern theories that Lawende was not Anderson's witness for the arguably non-existent Seaside Home 'confrontation', and that it was really Schwarz cut no ice with me at all.

lynn cates
03-23-2012, 05:29 PM
Hello Jonathan. If true, that would explain reams. And part of his description was intentionally--and admittedly--withheld.

Cheers.
LC

DVV
03-23-2012, 08:51 PM
I don't believe for a moment all that stuff about Lawende and Grant.
In his long controversy with Forbes, Kebbell made no allusion at all to such an identification, although he tried his best to back up his theory.
Instead, we are provided with arguments such as "He used to carry a most extraordinary knife like that of a surgeon".

Jonathan H
03-24-2012, 02:56 AM
To Lynn

Yes I have wondered that too.

Surely Kebbell would have screamed that story from the clock-face of Big Ben -- instead not a word?!

So, I postulate the following:

Grant was investigated as the fiend, for sure.

But by then, 1895, Macnaghten was comfortably locked into Druitt and Anderson and/or Swanson were locked into 'Kosminski'.

It is why there is no senior police agitation over Grant, as there hjad been over Sadler.

Then why did the reporter make this error about the un-named Lawende?

Apart from the explanation that they just made it up, there is something else to consider.

In the same 'Pall Mall Gazette' story Swanson is quoted as saying that the more likely 'Jack' is deceased, and this will match his Marginalia of about fifteen, or more years later. Anderson's son's biog. will also confirm the notion of a Polish Jewish suspect who was subsequently deceased, after being affirmed by a witness and sectioned.

Therefore what the reporter may have picked up on from Swanson, or somebody privy to the Anderson-Swanson faction was that a Jewish witness had said 'yes' when 'confronted' with a Ripper suspect.

The reporter misunderstood and assumed they meant this suspect, Grant.

Whom Swanson or whomever actually meant was 'Kosminski', from several years before.

Otherwise we have a big coincidence; that a Jewish witness affirmed to a Ripper suspect and fifteen years later Anderson and/or Swanson both wrote about a Jewish witness who affirmed to a Ripper suspect -- and they are completely different suspects?

lynn cates
03-24-2012, 05:07 AM
Hello Jonathan. Thanks. But I would have thought the converse?

Cheers.
LC

Jonathan H
03-24-2012, 05:21 AM
Can you elaborate?

Wickerman
03-24-2012, 06:36 AM
Despite the caveats presented by Lawende's statement about not recognizing the man again, he is the only witness in this whole series who has corroboration by two other witnesses. This is always of major importance in any police assimilation of witness statements and would not have been unrecognized by Swanson.

He was the best 'of a bad lot' because his sighting was verified by Harris and Levy.

Hi Cris.
Do you mean that Lawende's sighting was confirmed by his two friends?
Even though that "sighting" was to a degree uncertain?

From what I understand, Levy only saw a couple, but took no notice of them and could not offer a description of either.
Also, Harris only claimed to have seen the back of the man.

Even if we compile all three together, we really have nothing of value. Which tends to raise the question, where did the 'detail' come from that made up the suspects description?

I had raised the question previously that some of Lawende's 'detail' may have been borrowed from the Stride case, the Schwartz suspect. If you notice, the description attributed to Lawende does change each time it is reported.

Regards, Jon S.

Jonathan H
03-24-2012, 07:05 AM
Yes, but the very first time the Lawende description enters the record it broadly matches 'Knifeman' (the press version of 'Pipeman') and not 'Broad-Shouldered man'.

DVV
03-24-2012, 10:56 AM
Hi Jonathan
Apart from the explanation that they just made it up, there is something else to consider.


Of course they made it up, there is no need to speculate any further.

How can man be identified as the notorious JtR without his lawyer being aware ?

And equally telling : no police official did believe in a Grant theory. He is never alluded to, even not by those who tried to counter Anderson, Macnaghten or Abberline.

Jonathan H
03-24-2012, 11:56 AM
Well ... the writer might have made it up?

Or, he might have misunderstood something he scrounged.

Or, they really did have Lawende confront Grant and he said 'yes', Kebbell was not told, and the story only popped up once in the Gazette, and never again.

I'm just saying we cannot be absolutely sure without more information. Historical methodology says to be very wary of a single source if it is pointedly anomalous, eg. Druitt sacked whilst alive.

It still strikes me as a huge coincidence that two elements of the later Marginalia tale are present in the same article: a prime suspect deceased and a Jewish witness who allegedly says 'yes' against a Ripper suspect yet that case stalls forever.

If they are interviewing Swanson, you'd think he would have clarified if there had been a suspect-witness confrontation or not. Perhaps they didn't ask, or he refused to comment on it?

Or they just made it all up ...?

lynn cates
03-24-2012, 01:55 PM
Hello Jonathan. I would have thought the Grainger identification had been changed into the Kosminski identification.

Cheers.
LC

lynn cates
03-24-2012, 01:58 PM
Hello (again) Jonathan.

"Or they just made it all up ...?"

And of course, this cannot be ruled out either.

Cheers.
LC

Stephen Thomas
03-25-2012, 12:24 AM
Yes, but the very first time the Lawende description enters the record it broadly matches 'Knifeman' (the press version of 'Pipeman') and not 'Broad-Shouldered man'.

No it doesn't, Jonathan

Pipeman was tall and Lawende's guy wasn't.

Please try not to make stuff up as you go along.

People might be disinclined to take your master thesis seriously.

Jonathan H
03-25-2012, 02:23 AM
To Stephen Thomas

That's what broadly means. Not exact, but generally the same.

What is tall? Everybody is tall to a person who is not.

The point is so-called 'Knifeman' is carrying a knife, is lithe, Gentile-featured and attired as a proletarian.

Of course, what I find so revealing about your good self is the underlying venom of the post towards me.

Does my 'master thesis' threaten you ...?

Wickerman
03-25-2012, 03:15 AM
Yes, but the very first time the Lawende description enters the record it broadly matches 'Knifeman' (the press version of 'Pipeman') and not 'Broad-Shouldered man'.

Johnathan.
The first time we hear of any detail, all we have is, his height, moustache, neckerchief & cap.
Why?
Because the woman was standing in front of him, between Lawende & the suspect.

So where did the subsequent description of his clothing suddenly appear from?
Lawende couldn't see for the woman, remember?

First Description:
"of shabby appearance, about 30 years of age and 5ft. 9in. in height, of fair complexion, having a small fair moustache, and wearing a red neckerchief and a cap with a peak".

Second Description:
"age 30 ht. 5 ft. 7 or 8 in. comp. fair fair moustache, medium built, dress pepper & salt colour loose jacket, grey cloth cap with peak of same colour, reddish handkerchief tied in a knot, round neck, appearance of a sailor."

Third Description:
"aged from thirty to thirty-five; height 5ft 7in, with brown hair and big moustache; dressed respectably. Wore pea jacket, muffler, and a cloth cap with a peak of the same material.".

Where did all the extra detail come from?, Lawende only saw him once.

Schwartz Description:
"age about 30, ht. 5ft 5in. Comp. Fair, hair dark, small brown moustache, full face, broad shouldered, dress, dark jacket & trousers, black cap with peak,.."

Lawende could not see anything below the mans head & shoulders (First Desc.) because the woman was in the way.

Regards, Jon S.

Jonathan H
03-25-2012, 03:34 AM
Yes, I see what you are getting at, but you're not factoring in from where the descriptions originate which is arguably the key to their evolution.

The overall is that Lawende's description is of a slimmish, youngish, Gentile-featuredish man, with a fair moustache, dressed as a prole, perhaps as a sailor. The figure whom Schwarz described was a burlier figure, and who acted as a thug -- out in the open and in front of witnesses.

In the alternate account, one which makes more sense at least as a story, the witness fled at the sight of a slimmer, Gentile-featured man brandishing a knife seemingly coming to the rescue of the woman.

In terms of the relative tightness of the timing, 'Knifeman' coming to the rescue of Stride would be the perfect cover for a serial murderer, as the thug and witness high-tail it and he is left alone with a likely Ripper victim -- armed with a knife.

Could that all be wrong? Of course. Are other interpretations possible? Of course.

Joseph Lawende was used by the police in 1891. That's how much confidence they had in him as the witness, reagrdless of what he might have said to the press or thre passage of years. And the prime suspect they brought before him was a Gentile sailor. Judging by the published description of 1888 it does not sound much like Tom Sadler -- and sure enough the eyewitness said 'no'.

harry
03-25-2012, 07:47 AM
Perhaps in looking in Anderson's direction as the source of the 'He refused to testify' statement,we allow it began with the officers who were suppossedly present at this claimed seaside home identification,and that it was an oral communication,and not a written one that Anderson remembered. What is absent is any documentation that might help,but on the suspect's side,there is no information that he ever,in any way,made a confession.

DVV
03-25-2012, 11:25 AM
Or they just made it all up ...?

There is no other alternative. Nothing from the police, nothing from Kebbell. Only one sentence in one newspaper.
As for Lawende, he was quite forgotten in 1895. His testimony is never referred to after the Ripper hunt. There is the "PC near Mitre Square" instead.

Jonathan H
03-25-2012, 01:09 PM
You're a braver man than me, Gunga Din.

No alternative, hey?

Consider that before 1987, we would also throw out that Swanson ever thought 'Kosminski' was the fiend, or at least that he thought that the fiend was 'deceased' because the same 'Pall Mall Gazette' of 1895 was the only source to claim this about this significant police figure -- until his own Marginalia turned up.

I disagree, too, that Lawende was entirely 'quite forgotten'.

Macnaghten remembered him, all too well, artfully altering the story by pulling inside-out the ethnicity of witness and suspect.

It sure fooled Griffiths and Sims, and arguably set in motion the idea that somebody had seen 'Kosminski' at the scene of a Whitechapel murder.

I also subscribe to the Evans-Rumbelow theory of a fading, though sincere memory re-casting the Lawende-Sadler 'confrontation' to become the mythical one between the Polish Jewish suspect and a treacherous Jewish witness -- unnamed (poor co-operative Lawende).

DVV
03-25-2012, 03:10 PM
I cannot disagree more.
How do you explain Kebbell's silence on the suject ?
Why no reference in other press records ?
In police recollections ?
In police theories, opinions, interviews.

And yes, I'm braver than you, figure d'anchois.

Bridewell
03-25-2012, 06:28 PM
That's what broadly means. Not exact, but generally the same.

Fair comment

What is tall? Everybody is tall to a person who is not.

To a person of average height, some people are tall some short. Schwartz, though, according to Swanson, did not describe Pipeman as "tall". He said he was 5' 11".

The point is so-called 'Knifeman' is carrying a knife, is lithe, Gentile-featured and attired as a proletarian.



He's more usually known as 'Pipeman' because he was lighting his pipe. The allusion to a knife was introduced in the account given by The Star newspaper, a secondary source at best. Where is this individual described as "lithe, "Gentile-featured and attired as a proletarian"? I can't find it. All I can find is Swanson's report, written on 19th October:

"Second man, age 35, height 5ft. 11in., complexion fresh, hair light brown, moustache brown; dress, dark overcoat, old black hard felt hat wide brim, had a clay pipe in his hand"

& The Star's report:

"He described the man with the woman as about 30 years of age, rather stoutly built, and wearing a brown moustache. He was dressed respectably in dark clothes and felt hat.

"The man who came at him with a knife he also describes, but not in detail. He says he was taller than the other, but not so stout, and that his moustaches were red. Both men seem to belong to the same grade of society".


What is your source for "lithe" "Gentile" "proletarian" please?:scratchchin:

Regards, Bridewell.

Jonathan H
03-25-2012, 08:48 PM
The term secondary does not mean, in the context of historical methodology, a source of lesser importance.

It means a source crated by somebody who was not there at the time, eg. most history books.

Schwarz's version to the police is arguably more reliable because it is an offical record, and the witness knew this.

On the other hand his account to 'The Star', also a primary source and potentially unreliable because it is a tabloid seeking to hype it up, does provide a more coherent tale -- with a figure who broadly resembles the man who will later be seen chatting with the next victim:

'not so stout' eg. closer to thin; 'moustaches were red' eg. not Slavic; and 'same grade of society', eg. working-class; carrying a knife not smoking a pipe, eg. she was murdered with such a weapon.

The first account is of a man who fled the scene claiming he was the potential victim, and thus had no idea a woman was in lethal danger. The second account might be more candid as he fled from a dispute which was quickly and dangerously escalating, what with a weapon brandished.

DVV
03-25-2012, 09:15 PM
The term secondary does not mean, in the context of historical methodology, a source of lesser importance.

It means a source crated by somebody who was not there at the time, eg. most history books.



???
Most history books are based on sources, primary and secondary.

Stephen Thomas
03-25-2012, 09:16 PM
Does my 'master thesis' threaten you ...?

Not at all, Jonathan, and I'll tell you something. As someone who studied and lived in the East End in the 1960s and was always regarded as an outsider by the locals.

A fine featured middle class person like Druitt would, as the Brit phrase goes, have stuck out like a sore thumb in Whitechapel in 1888 and I suggest that you should take this fact into account when accusing him of being JTR.

Phil Carter
03-25-2012, 10:52 PM
Not at all, Jonathan, and I'll tell you something. As someone who studied and lived in the East End in the 1960s and was always regarded as an outsider by the locals.

Hello Stephen,

It was always that way, I have been told. I remember when I took my (then) wife and elderly family locals into a pub in the East End in the early 80's. One of the elderly ones amongst us, a 72 year old woman, turned around within 10 seconds of us entering and called out to those standing and sitting in the pub.. "they're wiv me"... and all eyes returned to whatever they were doing before we walked in. My ex-wife was rather bemused by the whole episode. Happy days!

best wishes

Phil

Wickerman
03-26-2012, 01:52 AM
A fine featured middle class person like Druitt would, as the Brit phrase goes, have stuck out like a sore thumb in Whitechapel in 1888

Interesting you should say that. So what do you think Druitt might have dressed like, "assuming" (just for the sake of argument), that Druitt was on the streets of Whitechapel?

Aged about 30?
Height about 5' 6-7"?
Dress: Morning/Cutaway coat, hard felt hat or Billycock style?
Appearance, like a clerk.
Hair dark, moustache dark, pale complexion?

Sound familar?

Regards, Jon S.