Respectably dressed, at any rate. Whether he had a similar appearance to Mr Astrakhan is hard to tell because, despite Best and Gardner having apparently spent some time standing in this man's vicinity - even exchanging some words with him - the sum total of B&G's combined testimony is nowhere near as detailed as George Hutchinson's.
so you don't think he was waiting man as seen by Lewis?
There was a large lodging-house directly opposite the entrance to Miller's Court, so it's not inconceivable that the man seen by Lewis was one of the lodgers, or perhaps a member of staff, who'd nipped outside for a breath of air.
I thought this coat [the Moscow Wrapper] was an interesting suggestion for the coat "supposedly" worn by the "Astracan man". It seemed to be fashionable in the early 70s.
- Single-breasted Moscow Wrapper of brown Melton or Beaver. It is cut to hang rather full, the fronts close by a fly, and fasten up to the neck, and the sleeves are of the Pagoda form, wide at wrists. The collar is turned down all around, and is covered with black Astracan fur; all the edges of the coat, the bottom of the sleeves, and the breast pocket, are trimmed with bands of the same fur about two inches in width. [emphasis]
there,s nothing new, only the unexplored
Hi Jon, Who do you think the press were talking about when they wrote, on Nov. 19th, about the police being divided between Blotchy & A-man, them both being suspects?
Or, are you just ignoring that?
I believe on the 15th there is a press release that states the story is not being held in high esteem any longer, maybe this is when they concluded any investigation on him if there was one.
Here's the sequence of events.
- Nov. 12th, Hutchinson provides the police with a story.
- Nov. 13th, A brief outline of this story is published in the press.
Plus, the Central News interview Hutchinson at the Victoria Home, while the press report that the police are divided between two suspects - Astrachan & Blotchy.
- Nov 14th, the Central News interview with Hutchinson appears in the press, while his story is now "the subject of careful inquiry"(Echo).
- Nov. 15th, The story by Hutchinson is now discredited (Star).
- Nov. 16th, the 'Galloway' story appears where a constable claims to be looking for a man quite different in appearance to Blotchy.
- Nov. 19th, reports are published that the police are still divided between two suspects - Astrachan & Blotchy.
Now Michael, at what point, in your opinion, do the police seem to find a problem and loose interest in Hutchinson's story?
Regards, Jon S.
Last edited by Wickerman : 12-14-2017 at 05:42 PM.
"After I left the court I walked about all night, as the place where I usually sleep was closed."
But surely that doesn't mean to say he just now realizes (at 3 a.m.) that the Victoria W. M.'s Home was closed?
I don't see it. These were his usual digs; 'closed' means 'curfew,' and he would have known the curfew. Half-way from Romford he already knew he was 'screwed,' and this is confirmed when, reaching the East End, he hears the clock strike 2 a.m. Hence he loiters in Fashion & Dean & environs until 3 a.m. and then wanders around until daybreak, because, he states, "the place where I usually sleep was closed." (Almost an afterthought after explaining the entire night's movements). That's how I've always read it.
This part of Hutchinson's story you quoted, "After I left the court I walked about all night, as the place where I usually sleep was closed", was provided in the Central News interview, not part of his police statement.
There is no dispute that this interview took place at the Victoria Home, yet he did not say "this place was closed", or "here, it was closed", so "his usual place" had to be some other address.
He does give the Victoria Home as his address on Monday in the police statement, but that does not mean he was staying there Thursday/Friday of the previous week.
There was a rule, it might be in the Common Lodging house Act of 1851, but all Common Lodging houses had to close while the common areas were cleaned. If I recall correctly it was between 2-3.00, but I would like to see the reference again to be sure.
The Lodginghouse keeper Wilkinson (Eddowes case) at Flower & Dean St., said he generally closed at 2:30 or 3:00, I suspect this is in recognition of the Act.
If Hutchinson was occupied with his sighting from 2:00 onwards, for the best part of the hour, then his "usual place" would close up before he left Millers Court.
This is why I say he only discovered that he had no place to stay after he left the court. It's an assumption based on some general rule, but it might explain his comment in his interview.
He claimed that he'd known Kelly for five years, which - if her biography has any grains of truth in it - is difficult to believe in itself, as she apparently had only moved to London 4 years previously. That aside, we can say with some confidence that she'd only arrived in Spitalfields within the last two years, prior to which she'd lived at Stepney and around the Ratcliff Highway. To my mind it's rather unlikely that Hutchinson's trajectory took him to those places at the same time as Kelly and that, at best, he was likely exaggerating the length of their acquaintance; at worst, he made it up in order to make his encounter with her, and the subsequent interest he took in her liaison with Astrakhan Man, seem more plausible.
But Gareth, the truth is he claimed to have known Kelly for three years - which tends to blow a hole in your objection I suspect.