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Has a genuine letter ever been ignored?

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  • Has a genuine letter ever been ignored?

    This question doesn't apply only to "Jack" but to known serial killers. (of the "lust" variety if you will)

    (I don't personally believe the Ripper communicated with police, although the letters are a great part of the lore)

    Generally speaking it seems that most if not all communiques are dismissed by authorities unless the offender provides information nobody else could know. Multiple reasons for this and probably the sheer volume of hoaxes being the top.

    Back to the thread title: Has a serial murderer ever written letters that police officials dismissed at the time and been revealed as genuine only after they were captured?

  • #2
    Hello Gnote,

    I am sure I once read about a case where one of the letters was deemed a fake, but then later found to be genuine, but can't for the life of me remember what case it was. I dont doubt somebody else will be able to help you here...

    Comment


    • #3
      I find the one sent to Leman Police station on November 10th, to be the most interesting.

      in it, the writer claims to be the killer, but denies having written anything before, and kindly accept his new nickname, Jack The Ripper.
      Is it progress when a cannibal uses a fork?
      - Stanislaw Jerzy Lee

      Comment


      • #4
        J6123,

        Are you thinking of the Green River "heprobablychewsgum" letter?

        http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/...r-letter_x.htm

        Yours Truly
        Genuine
        Maybea

        Comment


        • #5
          Thanks MayBea.

          The Green River Killer is/was one of the more famous serial killers in North America but i didn't know about this until now.

          Comment


          • #6
            John Douglas told the police in the Green River case that the killer would not write letters. After arrest, Ridgway was like 'Didn't you guys get my letter?' Douglas also said one of the murders was a copycat because the killer had 'dressed it up' with items. We now know she was indeed a GRK victim. Douglas' profile was so diametriclly different from Ridgway that the police dismissed him as suspect. He was a suspect up to that point. Needless to say, police haven't had faith in sk profilers since the early 90s. I think the only people who still do are Ripperologists.

            Yours truly,

            Tom Wescott

            Comment


            • #7
              Hi All,

              Has a genuine letter ever been ignored?

              A better question might be, has a hoax letter ever been treated as genuine?

              And thereby hangs the tale of Jack the Ripper.

              Regards,

              Simon
              Never believe anything until it has been officially denied.

              Comment


              • #8
                Didn't the BTK killer, Dennis Rader, write a letter to the authorities about the murders of the Fager family in Witchita? He claimed to be BTK, though he was disbelieved, but denied he was the killer in their case. He admired the unknown killer's work, however. Much later the letter was proved to have been written by Rader.

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                • #9
                  Hi Rosella,

                  What has Dennis Rader got to to with Jack the Ripper?

                  Regards,

                  Simon
                  Never believe anything until it has been officially denied.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Hi Simon.
                    have a look at the question posed in the opening pst of this thread. 'Other serial killers'. The Green River killer has also been mentioned.

                    Cheers, Rosella.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      DC snipers made phone calls that were either lost in the shuffle or ignored.

                      The "How Strange Is This" thread is discussing a Ripper letter to neighboring police that was taken as a hoax. It had a return address across the street from Miller's Court and was sent about a week before the Kelly murder. That address was the address of the witness who said she spoke to Kelly after the time when the murder supposedly occurred. It may be a coincidence, but it's a fascinating thread.
                      Last edited by Ghost; 11-13-2014, 06:01 AM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by SirJohnFalstaff View Post
                        I find the one sent to Leman Police station on November 10th, to be the most interesting.
                        "Well you see I've kept my word, and done for the one I said I would.

                        I suppose you took notice of what I said.


                        These other letters were not written by me at all and has some one been kind enough to give me the name of "Jack The Ripper". I'll accept it and act up to it. Look out for the next.

                        P.S. You can't trace me by this writing so its no use on the police stations"


                        Okay, here's a question: if this letter writer had never before written a letter, when did he say he'd do "for the one"? What did he say that we were to take notice of?

                        This letter obliquely suggests another communication of some kind in its first lines, or so it reads to me, and yet denies having made any previous communication just a few sentences later.
                        Last edited by Defective Detective; 11-13-2014, 11:38 AM.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Defective Detective View Post
                          "Well you see I've kept my word, and done for the one I said I would.

                          I suppose you took notice of what I said.


                          These other letters were not written by me at all and has some one been kind enough to give me the name of "Jack The Ripper". I'll accept it and act up to it. Look out for the next.

                          P.S. You can't trace me by this writing so its no use on the police stations"


                          Okay, here's a question: if this letter writer had never before written a letter, when did he say he'd do "for the one"? What did he say that we were to take notice of?

                          This letter obliquely suggests another communication of some kind in its first lines, or so it reads to me, and yet denies having made any previous communication just a few sentences later.
                          Hi, Defective.

                          This communication you reference does initially appear to have some internal contradiction.
                          "I know why the sun never sets on the British Empire: God wouldn't trust an Englishman in the dark."

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Defective Detective View Post
                            "Well you see I've kept my word, and done for the one I said I would.

                            I suppose you took notice of what I said.


                            These other letters were not written by me at all and has some one been kind enough to give me the name of "Jack The Ripper". I'll accept it and act up to it. Look out for the next.

                            P.S. You can't trace me by this writing so its no use on the police stations"


                            Okay, here's a question: if this letter writer had never before written a letter, when did he say he'd do "for the one"? What did he say that we were to take notice of?

                            This letter obliquely suggests another communication of some kind in its first lines, or so it reads to me, and yet denies having made any previous communication just a few sentences later.

                            Hi, Defective.

                            The communication you reference does initially appear to have some internal contradictions.
                            In stating that " These other letters were not written by me. . ." it does seem that the writer is disavowing authourship of any previous missives.

                            It could be argued, however, that the writer of this letter may have previously sent one or more letters to the authorities, describing his intentions or motivations and that that particular communication has been lost (This letter was addressed to "The Inspector, Leman St. Police").
                            So that this letter could be, from the authours point of view, a continuation of his 'dialogue' with those connected to the investigation and also a confirmation that at least one previous letter had been offered to them by him.
                            When he says " These other letters . . ." should we not consider that he might be referring to just those letters that had been made public at the time and published in newspapers and on handbills, rather than all the letters the police had received?

                            It should also be noted that this particular letter is unusual, when compared to the majority of other 'Ripper" letters, as it is written all in capitals, reasonably neat, correctly spelled throughout and missing just a punctuation point. The writer keeps each sentence on a straight line.
                            The writing slopes between 12 and 18 degrees rightward from the upright and the sheet it is written upon is almost perfectly square as opposed to the usual short and wide postcard or the tall and thin letter paper of the time.
                            Capital or block letters, while acceptable for general communication, were not used in most professions, unless clarity was absolutely essential.
                            One such profession was printing.

                            I'm sure there are other reasons for using block capitals and perhaps others on here can expand on this matter.

                            If you have Evans and Skinner's 'Letters from Hell', a facsimile of the letter is reproduced on p.114 and the transcript on p.248-9.

                            Yours, Caligo.

                            P.S. apologies for my previous post on this thread (unlucky for some #13), my browser reset as I was writing - sorry for any confusion.
                            Last edited by Caligo Umbrator; 11-13-2014, 01:41 PM. Reason: include reference to pictorial evidence.
                            "I know why the sun never sets on the British Empire: God wouldn't trust an Englishman in the dark."

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Defective Detective View Post
                              "Well you see I've kept my word, and done for the one I said I would.

                              I suppose you took notice of what I said.


                              These other letters were not written by me at all and has some one been kind enough to give me the name of "Jack The Ripper". I'll accept it and act up to it. Look out for the next.

                              P.S. You can't trace me by this writing so its no use on the police stations"


                              Okay, here's a question: if this letter writer had never before written a letter, when did he say he'd do "for the one"? What did he say that we were to take notice of?

                              This letter obliquely suggests another communication of some kind in its first lines, or so it reads to me, and yet denies having made any previous communication just a few sentences later.
                              Other than the clear contradiction (which Caligo provided a reasonable explanation for) the thing that stands out most to me is the writer's admission they did not come up with the nickname. Not that it's really evidence of anything, but i suspect a lot of the hoax letters were either signed or included "Jack The Ripper" explicitly. That said it's probably just a person who was a bit more clever than the average hoax writer at the time.

                              There's no reason I've seen yet to suggest that any of the letters were genuine but it would be quite something if any of them were ever proven to be. It would be the only piece of evidence that would be certain to have been in the Ripper's possession and of course more importantly provide a sample of his hand writing.

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