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Mr Blotchy

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  • Originally posted by chubbs View Post
    Apologies if I'm covering old ground - I'm new here and I defy anyone to read this entire massive and amazing forum. So please be gentle with me if my thoughts are incorrect, illogical or covered elsewhere.
    Ah, we've been covering 'old ground' for decades, we're used to it

    Timeline of events leading to the murder of MJK:
    11.45pm - Mr Blotchy and an already-drunk Mary Jane Kelly go into her room at Miller's Court. He is carrying a pail of beer. She starts singing inside the room.
    1.00am - Mary Jane Kelly is heard, still singing in her room.
    2.00am - Mary Jane Kelly and another man go into her room Miller's Court, according to George Hutchinson.
    That last time (2.00am) is roughly when Kelly met Hutchinson in Commercial St.
    Hutchinson was passing the Whitechapel church down on Whitechapel High Street about 1:50-55, according to his statement. Everything that happened from this time onward to him leaving Dorset Street (about 3:00am) is estimated. Plus, he does say he stood around for about 45 minutes (apparently, he didn't have a watch) before he left. So his vigil is presumed to have began about 2:15, which must be when Kelly & Astrachan disappeared from his sight up the passage to Millers Court.
    So I would change your 2:00 to 2:15.

    3.00am - George Hutchinson states that he leaves the area at 3.00am, so the 2nd man was there for at least an hour.
    4.00am - Elizabeth Prater and Sarah Lewis, in separate rooms, hear a cry of 'murder'. This is probably the time Mary Jane Kelly is murdered.
    This cry of murder was variously claimed to have been heard between 3:30 - 4:00, so it is not an exact marker.

    My thoughts:
    Firstly, does anyone know if prostitutes in Victorian London were hired by the hour, or were paid by result? - serious question, as you can see below.
    From what we've read, they were paid in advance for the act itself, estimated to have taken 15-30 mins. Usually taking place outside in some dark alley. As Kelly had a room she may have charged more, as the comfort of a bed needs to be included. Kelly did ask for 6d (six pence) from Hutchinson so this may have been her fee, as opposed to the standard 4d for a quicky in some dark alley (referred to as a 'knee-trembler')

    1. The 1st man (Mr Blotchy) clearly left MJK's room before 2.00am. He spent less than 1hr 15mins in her room. Did he pay for an hour?
    No-one can say for sure. If her client had brought beer, or even provided her with food (where had she eaten the fish & potatoes?), and as the night was wet, so presumably slow for business, Kelly may have let him stay longer than normal.

    2. The 2nd man (was it also Mr Blotchy?) went back with MJK to her room at 2.00am. Probably not Blotchy, if we believe Hutchinson's description. He may also have left within an hour, if indeed he'd bought 'an hour's worth'. (If he did leave before 4.00am, he may have left the door unlocked, but if he didn't leave he was the murderer.)
    If he didn't leave then yes, he had to be the murderer.
    This is where I normally remind the reader that a Mrs Kennedy claimed to have seen Kelly outside the Britannia (at the end of Dorset St.) about 3:00am. If this is true then Astrachan must have left, so he wasn't the killer.
    There are other reports that seem to indicate Kelly did leave her room after 3:00, but as the inquest did not pursue that line of questioning then we are left with a host of uncertainties.
    Although, Bowyer (McCarthy's labourer) did claim to see a man in the court around 3:00am that morning. He doesn't mention seeing Kelly so this man (Astrachan?) could have been leaving.
    The press report said Bowyer described this man to police.

    3. Someone murdered MJK at approximately 4.00am.
    • It could have been Mr Blotchy returning.
    • It could have been the man 'seen' by George Hutchinson.
    • It could have been someone else entirely, who simply turned up at approx 4.00am, went in through an unlocked door, strangled* the sleeping, drunk MJK (who woke up and cried, "Murder!" as she was being strangled) and then proceeded to carry out his maniacal deeds.
    4. Whoever killed MJK, I believe he must already have known her, as a friend, an acquaintance or as a customer.

    *Edit - or he may have just cut her throat?
    Lot's of "could have's", right?
    I'm more inclined to believe Kelly did leave her room, wandered up to the Britannia, was seen by Mrs Kennedy. Possibly picked up the man who was also there (previously reported to have been accosting women in the street). Took him back to her room (this being after 3:00am), and she was murdered by him sometime between 3:30 - 4:00 am. A time consistent with those cries of 'murder'.
    However, there are no certainties.

    Regards, Jon S.


    • Originally posted by Wickerman View Post

      This is where I normally remind the reader that a Mrs Kennedy claimed to have seen Kelly outside the Britannia (at the end of Dorset St.) about 3:00am. If this is true then Astrachan must have left, so he wasn't the killer.
      And this is normally where I remind Wickerman that "Mrs Kennedy's" story is so close to that of Sarah Lewis as to be almost identical, and that "Mrs Kennedy" was either a liar who embellished Sarah Lewis's story and passed it off as her own, a mistake/mixup by a press agency, or else "Kennedy" was an alias for Sarah Lewis herself.
      Kind regards, Sam Flynn

      "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)


      • Thanks for all that, Jon - and for the welcome.

        So, we seem to be left with two alternatives. Either Mary Jane picked someone up in the street, after 3.00am and took him back to her room, or he entered her room when she was in it (asleep or awake, nobody knows).

        In my imagination, as she was seen by Mrs Kennedy, it's marginally more likely that she encountered him in the street and took him back to Miller's Court, (ooops, as you just said!). If that's the case, she may not have known him from Adam, so my idea that she probably knew her killer could be total nonsense.

        The more I think about this series of murders, the more unsure I become. I just pray that a massive clue surfaces before I die.