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  • Originally posted by MrBarnett View Post

    Very rough apparently.

    ‘Poor class of people. Casual and migratory people.’

    Should be ‘black rather than d[ark] b[lue] of map.’
    Thanks for this.

    I note from my dizzying accumulation of maps that Paul's side of Foster Street was cleared for a brewery development not many years after. It took up the whole block.

    All things considered, I wonder if dear Mr Paul was ... a bit of a crim...?

    M.

    Comment


    • Originally posted by Herlock Sholmes View Post

      Hello Gary,

      But what official records do we have of the Police’s investigations?

      There are numerous references to the investigations undertaken by the police in the Nichols and Chapman cases, but no mention of any into ‘Cross’ or Paul.

      Look at the HO index to the Nichols file compiled on 25/10/1888:

      (The numbers are page numbers)
      Attached Files
      Last edited by MrBarnett; 02-04-2022, 04:18 PM.

      Comment


      • Originally posted by MrBarnett View Post
        In 1887, the Lechmeres were the sole occupants of 20, James Street, occupying 6 rooms.

        In 1891, CAL, his wife and 8 of his 9 children were living in 4 rooms in 22, Doveton Street. Another family were occupying 3 rooms at the same address.

        You have to wonder how a carman with 9 kids managed to keep his family up to a ‘v. decent’ standard in James Street and could afford to rent a 6-roomed house - and whether the downsizing to Doveton Street was prompted by financial necessity.
        I've speculated before that Lech might have been a raging antisemite desperate to get out of an increasingly Jewish area. I also like your idea that the trick with his name might have been to prevent someone who knew him as Lechmere realising what he was getting up to in his new location: I can't help wondering if he was doing something in James Street that created the necessity for a quick departure...

        M.

        Comment


        • Originally posted by MrBarnett View Post


          There are numerous references to the investigations undertaken by the police in the Nichols and Chapman cases, but no mention of any into ‘Cross’ or Paul.

          Look at the HO index to the Nichols file compiled on 25/10/1888:
          The slaughtermen get a mention, Mulshaw gets a mention, Pizer gets a mention, lodging houses, coffee stall keepers and prostitutes get a mention. ‘Cross’ doesn’t.

          And given that this was compiled just over 3 weeks after the murder, the usual mantra of ‘the records may once have existed but were stolen by souvenir hunters’ doesn’t wash.

          In my view, the most logical conclusion from the evidence is that Cross wasn’t investigated. He gave a statement at some point and it was taken at face value.
          Last edited by MrBarnett; 02-04-2022, 04:19 PM.

          Comment


          • Originally posted by Mark J D View Post

            I've speculated before that Lech might have been a raging antisemite desperate to get out of an increasingly Jewish area. I also like your idea that the trick with his name might have been to prevent someone who knew him as Lechmere realising what he was getting up to in his new location: I can't help wondering if he was doing something in James Street that created the necessity for a quick departure...

            M.
            There are those who can’t seem to grasp the fact that by not mentioning his real name in court he was concealing a significant aspect of his identity.



            Comment



            • In his summary report of 19th October, Swanson described the action taken in respect of the slaughtermen in some detail:


              ‘… three slaughtermen, named Tomkins, Britton and Mumford employed by night at Messrs. Harrison Barber & Coy. premises Winthrop Street. Their statements were taken separately, and without any means of communicating with each other, and they satisfactorily accounted for their time, being corroborated in some portions by the police on night duty near the premises.’

              Did they do the same for ‘Cross’ and Paul but Swanson forgot to mention it?

              Comment


              • Originally posted by MrBarnett View Post

                There are those who can’t seem to grasp the fact that by not mentioning his real name in court he was concealing a significant aspect of his identity.


                But what advantage did it give him though. A concealment requires a reason. There needs to be a purpose in the concealment. To avoid being found for example. None of these apply to Lechmere. Why didn’t he call himself Fred Bloggs if he wanted to disappear?
                Regards

                Herlock Sholmes

                Comment


                • Originally posted by MrBarnett View Post

                  There are those who can’t seem to grasp the fact that by not mentioning his real name in court he was concealing a significant aspect of his identity.
                  But that didnt seem to bother the coroner or the police either at the time or thereafter, so we shouldnt read to much into it as there clearly was an explantion given either to the police or the coroner which was clearly accepted because we see no mention of it being challenged.

                  www.trevormarriott.co.uk

                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by Herlock Sholmes View Post

                    But what advantage did it give him though. A concealment requires a reason. There needs to be a purpose in the concealment. To avoid being found for example. None of these apply to Lechmere. Why didn’t he call himself Fred Bloggs if he wanted to disappear?
                    I don’t know if it gave him an advantage. But there are potential circumstances where it might have.

                    One I keep banging on about is that he may have wanted to keep his unique (as I believe it was) name out of the press to prevent it being picked up on in Herefordshire.

                    The other is that by 1888 with a large brood of kids all known as Lechmere at school he must have been known by that name locally. And the chances are there will have been people who only knew him by that name.

                    The idea that by giving his address and place of work at the inquest everyone who had ever come into contact with him would instantly identify him is just plain daft.

                    Comment




                    • I think we can say for a fact that when the inquest started Lechmere had clearly NOT been questioned. The first day of the inquest it was still the police position that PC Neil found the body, and this features prominently in the press coverage. Including some nice drawings of PC Neil doing his stuff.

                      Had Lechmere been interviewed the police would have known this was an error. The fact they didn’t tells us all we need to know.

                      The police made basic mistakes. They never established who found the body. This was an unforgivable blunder and it’s likely why Lechmere slipped under the radar.

                      Moving on, why would the police question Lechmere anyway ? He was just some random passing on a message. He was a bit part player in the drama. A nobody.

                      It’s also worth noting when Lechmere spoke to Mizen, Lechmere had company, Robert Paul, and this would lower any suspicion of foul play. It gives the appearance that Lechmere hasn’t been alone and has been walking to work with a friend / neighbour / colleague. There would be no suspicion, and no reason for the police to talk any further to Lechmere. He would have been an afterthought on what was a busy night and a developing investigation.

                      Furthermore, it would have been impossible for the police to contact him anyway. It couldn’t have happened. Lechmere only spoke to one Policeman, PC Mizen, and Mizen never took ANY details - not his name, address or employer. When Lechmere walked up Hanbury Street he walked into anonymity. It would be interesting to find out exactly how the police questioned him ? They had absolutely no idea who he was or where he lived or worked.

                      Lastly, Lechmere turned up at the inquest in his work clothes, including his apron. If he had been asked to attend then why is he dressed for work ? I would suggest had he been questioned, and then summoned, he wouldn’t be wearing an apron in front a coroner and jury. His unusual attire suggests a last minute decision to attend.

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by Trevor Marriott View Post

                        But that didnt seem to bother the coroner or the police either at the time or thereafter, so we shouldnt read to much into it as there clearly was an explantion given either to the police or the coroner which was clearly accepted because we see no mention of it being challenged.

                        www.trevormarriott.co.uk
                        There’s no ‘clearly’ about it, Trevor. He didn’t give his real name in court and it appears nowhere in the police records. In fact, he barely gets any mention at all in them.

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by MrBarnett View Post

                          The slaughtermen get a mention, Mulshaw gets a mention, Pizer gets a mention, lodging houses, coffee stall keepers and prostitutes get a mention. ‘Cross’ doesn’t.

                          And given that this was compiled just over 3 weeks after the murder, the usual mantra of ‘the records may once have existed but were stolen by souvenir hunters’ doesn’t wash.

                          In my view, the most logical conclusion from the evidence is that Cross wasn’t investigated. He gave a statement at some point and it was taken at face value.
                          I got my dates in a twist there, obviously, Swanson’s report was more like 8 weeks after the murder.

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by Herlock Sholmes View Post

                            But what advantage did it give him though. A concealment requires a reason. There needs to be a purpose in the concealment. To avoid being found for example. None of these apply to Lechmere. Why didn’t he call himself Fred Bloggs if he wanted to disappear?



                            The reason he can’t call himself Fred Bloggs is completely obvious and it’s worrying that you can’t figure this out for yourself.

                            Plausible deniability. If you say you are called Fred Bloggs and get caught out you haven’t got a leg to stand on. You are caught in a lie - you have both lied to a coroner under oath and incriminated yourself in a murder.

                            Using a family name, say your step fathers name, allows you to conceal your identity but give you plausible deniability. If caught out you have a potential reason for using the name.

                            Peter Sutcliffe used this successfully. He called himself Peter Coonan when stopped by the police. This was his mothers maiden name.

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by MrBarnett View Post

                              I don’t know if it gave him an advantage. But there are potential circumstances where it might have.

                              One I keep banging on about is that he may have wanted to keep his unique (as I believe it was) name out of the press to prevent it being picked up on in Herefordshire.

                              The other is that by 1888 with a large brood of kids all known as Lechmere at school he must have been known by that name locally. And the chances are there will have been people who only knew him by that name.

                              The idea that by giving his address and place of work at the inquest everyone who had ever come into contact with him would instantly identify him is just plain daft.
                              Cheers Gary.

                              Can we be certain that his kids would have be known as Lechmere and not Cross?

                              On your last point, I wasn’t aware that anyone had claimed that that by giving his address and place of work at the Inquest that numerous people would have been able to identify him to be honest. My only point would be that it wouldn’t have prevented the police from tracing him.
                              Regards

                              Herlock Sholmes

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by SuperShodan View Post
                                The police made basic mistakes. They never established who found the body. This was an unforgivable blunder and it’s likely why Lechmere slipped under the radar.
                                They did establish who found the body, Bob. Paul’s story gave them the first idea of the body being found prior to Neil and then, either Lechmere came forward of his own accord or the police found him the way the Lloyd’s reporter found Paul. Either way, they did establish that Lechmere found the body before Neil.

                                It’s also worth noting when Lechmere spoke to Mizen, Lechmere had company, Robert Paul, and this would lower any suspicion of foul play. It gives the appearance that Lechmere hasn’t been alone and has been walking to work with a friend / neighbour / colleague. There would be no suspicion, and no reason for the police to talk any further to Lechmere.
                                Not really. Both he and Paul had told the inquest that they had examined the body before deciding to go and tell the first policeman they saw, but they didn’t tell Mizen that they’d examined the body first. Had they done so, Mizen would have had reason to wonder if they had actually been sent to him by a fellow officer already at the crime scene. This would be a reason for the police to question him/them and get things cleared up.

                                Furthermore, it would have been impossible for the police to contact him anyway.
                                Why can’t the police have done what the Lloyd’s reporter did to contact Paul?

                                His unusual attire suggests a last minute decision to attend.
                                Probably, yes.
                                "You can rob me, you can starve me and you can beat me and you can kill me. Just don't bore me."
                                Clint Eastwood as Gunny in "Heartbreak Ridge"

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