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Go Back   Casebook Forums > Ripper Discussions > Victims > Mary Jane Kelly

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  #171  
Old 08-09-2017, 09:49 AM
Joshua Rogan Joshua Rogan is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wickerman View Post
My only comment is that this is not taken from the 1887 Coroner's Act, so I imagine the Star obtained a copy of the Act which was in effect prior to 1887.
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Originally Posted by David Orsam View Post
My comment in a word would be: obsolete.
Thanks chaps. My understanding of Common Law is that it stems from judicial precedent rather than statutes and legislation.
In fact, Wikipedia says that "Common law, as the body of law made by judges,[7][8] stands in contrast to and on equal footing with statutes which are adopted through the legislative process, and regulations which are promulgated by the executive branch."

From that, I can't see how it can be superceded by the Coroners Act 1887, only by legal precedent.

However I'm no legal expert, so I won't argue the point.

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Originally Posted by Robert St Devil View Post
considering he established her cause of death, are the subsequent mutilations considered wounds or injuries?
I don't think it matters, apparently all wounds and injuries needed to be described, not just the fatal ones.
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  #172  
Old 08-09-2017, 09:50 AM
David Orsam David Orsam is offline
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I truly doubt that the requirement of "when", is met by simply writing "Friday". In cases of murder the actual time is surely the expected interpretation. Whether this time is estimated by medical testimony, or determined by eyewitness testimony, will depend on the individual case.
Establishing the day is of precious little help to a police investigation and the authors of the Coroner's Act had to appreciate this.
Jon – just look at Mary Kelly's death certificate. Under the heading "When and where died" it says "9th November 1888". That's the "when". There was no requirement to establish the time of death (whatever you think the authors of the Coroner's Act would have appreciated).

If you don't agree then just show me where we find the times of death being established for Mary Ann Nichols and Annie Chapman from the Baxter inquests.
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  #173  
Old 08-09-2017, 09:52 AM
David Orsam David Orsam is offline
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From that, I can't see how it can be superceded by the Coroners Act 1887, only by legal precedent.

However I'm no legal expert, so I won't argue the point.
You are right Joshua but it's more complicated than that.

The Star (or rather the Daily Telegraph, which is where the story first appeared) said that "the common law, since Edward I., has declared that…". This isn't quite right. The quoted provision has come from the Statute De Officio Coronatoris of 1276 (a.k.a. 4 Edw.1) which was a statute from the time of Edward 1, which statute was declaratory of the common law at that time. However, the 1276 statute was repealed in its entirety by the 1887 Coroners Act so the newspaper was arguably wrong to fall back on the common law in a situation where the cited provision had been incorporated into a statute, which statute had been repealed.
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  #174  
Old 08-09-2017, 10:51 AM
Joshua Rogan Joshua Rogan is online now
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You are right Joshua but it's more complicated than that...
Surprise surprise, who'd have thought matters of law would be less than clear?
Thanks David for explaining it.
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  #175  
Old 08-09-2017, 11:18 AM
John G John G is offline
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Originally Posted by Joshua Rogan View Post
Thanks chaps. My understanding of Common Law is that it stems from judicial precedent rather than statutes and legislation.
In fact, Wikipedia says that "Common law, as the body of law made by judges,[7][8] stands in contrast to and on equal footing with statutes which are adopted through the legislative process, and regulations which are promulgated by the executive branch."

From that, I can't see how it can be superceded by the Coroners Act 1887, only by legal precedent.

However I'm no legal expert, so I won't argue the point.



I don't think it matters, apparently all wounds and injuries needed to be described, not just the fatal ones.
The common law is most definitely not on an equal footing to Parliamentary statute, the latter taking precedence on the basis of Parliamentary sovereignty: see, for example, Cheney v Conn (1968). Equity also prevails over the common law.

Of course, to complicate matters, judicial interpretation of statute technically represents the common law.

Last edited by John G : 08-09-2017 at 11:28 AM.
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  #176  
Old 08-09-2017, 01:00 PM
Joshua Rogan Joshua Rogan is online now
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Of course, to complicate matters...
There's that word again.
Thanks John.

So (anyone), when Coroner Baxter expressed amazement that Dr Phillips didn't want to reveal anything more about Chapman's injuries than was necessary to determine cause of death, was he behind the times, or was he entitled to ask for the full details (and to an answer) whether or not it was legally neecessary?
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  #177  
Old 08-09-2017, 01:14 PM
David Orsam David Orsam is offline
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There's that word again.
Thanks John.

So (anyone), when Coroner Baxter expressed amazement that Dr Phillips didn't want to reveal anything more about Chapman's injuries than was necessary to determine cause of death, was he behind the times, or was he entitled to ask for the full details (and to an answer) whether or not it was legally neecessary?
Baxter's point was that all the evidence about Chapman's injuries WAS necessary to determine the cause of death (and that it wasn't Phillips' role to decide what was relevant in this respect), i.e.

The CORONER. - We are here to decide the cause of death, and therefore have a right to hear all particulars. Whether that evidence is made public or not rests with the Press. I might add I have never before heard of any evidence being kept back from a coroner.
Dr. Phillips. - I am in the hands of the Court, and what I was going to detail took place after death.
The CORONER. - That is a matter of opinion. You know that medical men often differ.
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  #178  
Old 08-09-2017, 01:18 PM
John G John G is offline
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There's that word again.
Thanks John.

So (anyone), when Coroner Baxter expressed amazement that Dr Phillips didn't want to reveal anything more about Chapman's injuries than was necessary to determine cause of death, was he behind the times, or was he entitled to ask for the full details (and to an answer) whether or not it was legally neecessary?
Hi Joshua,

The position today is that coroners have a wide discretion as regards the conduct of the inquiry: https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=...retion&f=false

Thus, "We are unwilling for our part, to fetter the discretion of the coroner by being at all prescriptive about the procedures he should adopt in order to achieve a full, fair and thorough hearing." (Per Brookes, LJ, R v Coroner for Lincolnshire, ex parte Hay, 1999.)

I would imagine the position in 1888 would be very similar.

Last edited by John G : 08-09-2017 at 01:26 PM.
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  #179  
Old 08-09-2017, 01:47 PM
Joshua Rogan Joshua Rogan is online now
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Thanks again. I'm learning so much today :-)
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  #180  
Old 08-09-2017, 03:52 PM
Varqm Varqm is offline
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I agree that the constable should have been called varqm but only bc Coroner Macdonald brought him up in the first place, when he led Mary Ann Cox with the question: It could have been a policeman?

They were establishing someone in the court at 6:15a; and also, establishing potential times of death for Mary Kelly. This matter could have been cleared up by bringing the constable before the inquest. Why Mary Ann Cox only heard footsteps at 6:15a might suggest that constables only patrolled Miller's Court during daylight hours.
The man Cox heard at past six,yes the policeman would have been called and ascertained if it was.The PC,again, passed 16 times if an 8 hour shift,30 min beat,the crucial part,11 pm-4 am.,and he saw nothing,a man, a couple,how about the beat pass before 10 PM (Nov 8th)and how about the beat pass during maxwell's sighting.The PC could not help in Hutchinson's
statement,he PC(s) was/were not in the inquest.To me it's somewhat plain to see there were no beats on dorset st on the evening and early morning
on Nov. 8/9th.Maybe Dorset St. was not important enough,maybe the Lord mayors show ,maybe a lack of manpower.Just a hunch this was a reason the kelly inquest was cut,although jurisdiction and costs were put forward.We don't know for sure either way.Eddowes inquest were 2 days, one week apart,Kelly was one day only.

How about this witness...

Evening News
London, U.K.
12 November 1888
THE WORK OF THE POLICE

STATEMENT BY A FLOWER GIRL

A flower girl, named Catherine Pickell, residing in Dorset street, states that at about 7.30 on Friday morning she called at Kelly's house to borrow a shawl, and that,
though she knocked several times, she got no answer.


But unfortunately...

Times (London)
Tuesday, 13 November 1888


Some surprise was created among those present at the inquest in Shoreditch Town-hall by the abrupt termination of the inquiry, as it was well known that further evidence would be forthcoming.
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