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  • How sure was Paul?

    I have been looking at Robert Paul and how he spoke of himself feeling a movement within the body of Polly Nichols as he put her hand on her chest. The common take on things is, if I am not much mistaken, that Paul expressed himself vaguely, stating that he thought he felt something, but once we look at the press reports, another picture emerges.
    It was late in the examination process that Paul put his hand on the chest of Nichols in order to pull her dress down, and that was when he felt - or thought he felt - a movement. The version of events that has become the standard interpretation is the one in the Times:

    While he was pulling the clothes down he touched the breast, and then fancied he felt a slight movement. Times 18/9

    This would be where the conception that Paul only thought that he felt something was born. He "fancied" he felt movement. Nothing more.

    But letīs look at the other papers before we settle the matter:

    He and the man examined the body, and he felt sure he detected faint indications of breathing. Daily News 18/9, Woodford Times 21/9

    He "felt sure". The problem with this wording is that it is leaves room for interpreting it as imagination: Paul "felt sure" may perhaps mean that he afterwards came to the conclusion that he was NOT sure, that he only felt sure at the time?

    Letīs move on:

    He put his hand to the woman's breast and felt a slight breath, such a one as might be felt in a child two or three months old. East London Advertiser 18/9

    This is unequivocal: He DID feel a slight breath. He is not saying that the fancied he felt it, he actually DID feel it.

    Next up is the Daily Telegraph:

    The clothes were disarranged, and he helped to pull them down. Before he did so he detected a slight movement as of breathing, but very faint. Daily Telegraph 18/9

    Same thing. He DID detect a slight movement as of breathing.

    Okay. So where does this leave us? The one thing we can be certain of is that the reporters all heard Paul say the exact same words. He did not tell one paper that he only fancied he felt movement and another that he was sure that he felt movement. So which was it?

    My suggestion here is that we weigh in another factor before we make our choice.

    When Robert Paul took the stand on the 17th of September, the papers had written extensively about how Poly Nichols was found dead with her neck cut down to the bone. This means that the trachea waas also severed, and consequently, Nichols would not have been able to breathe.
    There is also the matter that the inquest did not conclude that Lechmere had cut the throat perhaps seconds only before Paul arrived. Therefore, the common conception would have been one of somebody else having killed Nichols and left minutes before Paul arrived. And so, Nichols should not have been able to breathe or move at all.

    But when Robert Paul examined Nichols on the murder night, he had no knowledge of these things.

    Taken together, I find that all of this would be quite likely to make Paul doubt his own senses to a degree, in retrospect. And so I think that Paul at the inquest may have reasoned along the lines of "I was sure I felt her breathe when I touched her. It was a faint movement only, like that in a small child, but I am certain I felt something - although, I couldnīt have, could I...?"

    This would explain the vagueness of the reports to a large degree.

    Of course, Paul thought he felt breathing, but it may instead have been a stirring within the muscles, the last shiver of a dying person. And if that was it, then I would say that it is extremely troublesome for Charles Lechmere.

    Iīd like to hear your takes on this - why has it become a "fact" that Paul only THOUGHT he felt movement, when he does not say so himself? And to what degree does a revised picture affect out view of Charles Lechmere?

    Maybe, just maybe, we can have an interesting discussion about this?

  • #2
    I doubt there could be an interesting discussion involving Paul.My impression is that the body of a dead person does emit signs of internal movement for a period of time.If Paul touched her breast,the fact that she was wearing no support there,might cause a slight movement of the breast.(Please do not ask if that observation is from experience).Thats it.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Fisherman View Post

      Of course, Paul thought he felt breathing, but it may instead have been a stirring within the muscles, the last shiver of a dying person. And if that was it, then I would say that it is extremely troublesome for Charles Lechmere.
      How long after death can these ‘stirrings within the muscles’ occur Fish?

      Regards

      Sir Herlock Sholmes



      "The most confused you will ever get is when you try to convince your heart and spirit of something your mind knows is a lie.”

      ”The absence of doubt is not necessarily a sign of the presence of truth.”

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Fisherman View Post
        I have been looking at Robert Paul and how he spoke of himself feeling a movement within the body of Polly Nichols as he put her hand on her chest. The common take on things is, if I am not much mistaken, that Paul expressed himself vaguely, stating that he thought he felt something, but once we look at the press reports, another picture emerges.
        It was late in the examination process that Paul put his hand on the chest of Nichols in order to pull her dress down, and that was when he felt - or thought he felt - a movement. The version of events that has become the standard interpretation is the one in the Times:

        While he was pulling the clothes down he touched the breast, and then fancied he felt a slight movement. Times 18/9

        This would be where the conception that Paul only thought that he felt something was born. He "fancied" he felt movement. Nothing more.

        But letīs look at the other papers before we settle the matter:

        He and the man examined the body, and he felt sure he detected faint indications of breathing. Daily News 18/9, Woodford Times 21/9

        He "felt sure". The problem with this wording is that it is leaves room for interpreting it as imagination: Paul "felt sure" may perhaps mean that he afterwards came to the conclusion that he was NOT sure, that he only felt sure at the time?

        Letīs move on:

        He put his hand to the woman's breast and felt a slight breath, such a one as might be felt in a child two or three months old. East London Advertiser 18/9

        This is unequivocal: He DID feel a slight breath. He is not saying that the fancied he felt it, he actually DID feel it.

        Next up is the Daily Telegraph:

        The clothes were disarranged, and he helped to pull them down. Before he did so he detected a slight movement as of breathing, but very faint. Daily Telegraph 18/9

        Same thing. He DID detect a slight movement as of breathing.

        Okay. So where does this leave us? The one thing we can be certain of is that the reporters all heard Paul say the exact same words. He did not tell one paper that he only fancied he felt movement and another that he was sure that he felt movement. So which was it?

        My suggestion here is that we weigh in another factor before we make our choice.

        When Robert Paul took the stand on the 17th of September, the papers had written extensively about how Poly Nichols was found dead with her neck cut down to the bone. This means that the trachea waas also severed, and consequently, Nichols would not have been able to breathe.
        There is also the matter that the inquest did not conclude that Lechmere had cut the throat perhaps seconds only before Paul arrived. Therefore, the common conception would have been one of somebody else having killed Nichols and left minutes before Paul arrived. And so, Nichols should not have been able to breathe or move at all.

        But when Robert Paul examined Nichols on the murder night, he had no knowledge of these things.

        Taken together, I find that all of this would be quite likely to make Paul doubt his own senses to a degree, in retrospect. And so I think that Paul at the inquest may have reasoned along the lines of "I was sure I felt her breathe when I touched her. It was a faint movement only, like that in a small child, but I am certain I felt something - although, I couldnīt have, could I...?"

        This would explain the vagueness of the reports to a large degree.

        Of course, Paul thought he felt breathing, but it may instead have been a stirring within the muscles, the last shiver of a dying person. And if that was it, then I would say that it is extremely troublesome for Charles Lechmere.

        Iīd like to hear your takes on this - why has it become a "fact" that Paul only THOUGHT he felt movement, when he does not say so himself? And to what degree does a revised picture affect out view of Charles Lechmere?

        Maybe, just maybe, we can have an interesting discussion about this?
        yes it seems she may have still been alive. which dosnt bode well for lech. i mean how long can someone live after having there throat cut and midsection gashed open. not vert long, seconds i would say

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Abby Normal View Post

          yes it seems she may have still been alive. which dosnt bode well for lech. i mean how long can someone live after having there throat cut and midsection gashed open. not vert long, seconds i would say
          It is a time that will vary in between different species, I know that much. Chicken can run a fair way in a decapitated state, eels can do a lot of writhing long after they have lost their heads and so on.
          I will try to find info about people, but basically I think we are talking about a short time only.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Herlock Sholmes View Post

            How long after death can these ‘stirrings within the muscles’ occur Fish?
            On my way to find out, Herlock!

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Fisherman View Post

              On my way to find out, Herlock!
              Regards

              Sir Herlock Sholmes



              "The most confused you will ever get is when you try to convince your heart and spirit of something your mind knows is a lie.”

              ”The absence of doubt is not necessarily a sign of the presence of truth.”

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Fisherman View Post
                I have been looking at Robert Paul and how he spoke of himself feeling a movement within the body of Polly Nichols as he put her hand on her chest. The common take on things is, if I am not much mistaken, that Paul expressed himself vaguely, stating that he thought he felt something, but once we look at the press reports, another picture emerges.
                It was late in the examination process that Paul put his hand on the chest of Nichols in order to pull her dress down, and that was when he felt - or thought he felt - a movement. The version of events that has become the standard interpretation is the one in the Times:

                While he was pulling the clothes down he touched the breast, and then fancied he felt a slight movement. Times 18/9

                This would be where the conception that Paul only thought that he felt something was born. He "fancied" he felt movement. Nothing more.

                But letīs look at the other papers before we settle the matter:

                He and the man examined the body, and he felt sure he detected faint indications of breathing. Daily News 18/9, Woodford Times 21/9

                He "felt sure". The problem with this wording is that it is leaves room for interpreting it as imagination: Paul "felt sure" may perhaps mean that he afterwards came to the conclusion that he was NOT sure, that he only felt sure at the time?

                Letīs move on:

                He put his hand to the woman's breast and felt a slight breath, such a one as might be felt in a child two or three months old. East London Advertiser 18/9

                This is unequivocal: He DID feel a slight breath. He is not saying that the fancied he felt it, he actually DID feel it.

                Next up is the Daily Telegraph:

                The clothes were disarranged, and he helped to pull them down. Before he did so he detected a slight movement as of breathing, but very faint. Daily Telegraph 18/9

                Same thing. He DID detect a slight movement as of breathing.

                Okay. So where does this leave us? The one thing we can be certain of is that the reporters all heard Paul say the exact same words. He did not tell one paper that he only fancied he felt movement and another that he was sure that he felt movement. So which was it?

                My suggestion here is that we weigh in another factor before we make our choice.

                When Robert Paul took the stand on the 17th of September, the papers had written extensively about how Poly Nichols was found dead with her neck cut down to the bone. This means that the trachea waas also severed, and consequently, Nichols would not have been able to breathe.
                There is also the matter that the inquest did not conclude that Lechmere had cut the throat perhaps seconds only before Paul arrived. Therefore, the common conception would have been one of somebody else having killed Nichols and left minutes before Paul arrived. And so, Nichols should not have been able to breathe or move at all.

                But when Robert Paul examined Nichols on the murder night, he had no knowledge of these things.

                Taken together, I find that all of this would be quite likely to make Paul doubt his own senses to a degree, in retrospect. And so I think that Paul at the inquest may have reasoned along the lines of "I was sure I felt her breathe when I touched her. It was a faint movement only, like that in a small child, but I am certain I felt something - although, I couldnīt have, could I...?"

                This would explain the vagueness of the reports to a large degree.

                Of course, Paul thought he felt breathing, but it may instead have been a stirring within the muscles, the last shiver of a dying person. And if that was it, then I would say that it is extremely troublesome for Charles Lechmere.

                Iīd like to hear your takes on this - why has it become a "fact" that Paul only THOUGHT he felt movement, when he does not say so himself? And to what degree does a revised picture affect out view of Charles Lechmere?

                Maybe, just maybe, we can have an interesting discussion about this?
                Hi Fisherman

                It seems clear that Robert Paul wasn't at all sure that he detected a sign. I think what he stated is eminently explicable by the situation in which Paul found himself. You are proceeding along a street when you come upon a woman on the ground. You don't know whether she is alive or dead, but your hope is that she is still alive. You are not aware of the problem that led to her lying on the ground and you are ignorant of the exact nature of her wounds which would only be revealed later when her body was examined in the mortuary. Your hope that she may still be alive leads you to believe you detect evidence of life. I think the situation is as simple as that. I don't think there's enough there to hang Lechmere.

                Best regards

                Chris
                Christopher T. George
                Organizer, RipperCon #JacktheRipper-#True Crime Conference
                just held in Baltimore, April 7-8, 2018.
                For information about RipperCon, go to http://rippercon.com/
                RipperCon 2018 talks can now be heard at http://www.casebook.org/podcast/

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by ChrisGeorge View Post

                  Hi Fisherman

                  It seems clear that Robert Paul wasn't at all sure that he detected a sign. I think what he stated is eminently explicable by the situation in which Paul found himself. You are proceeding along a street when you come upon a woman on the ground. You don't know whether she is alive or dead, but your hope is that she is still alive. You are not aware of the problem that led to her lying on the ground and you are ignorant of the exact nature of her wounds which would only be revealed later when her body was examined in the mortuary. Your hope that she may still be alive leads you to believe you detect evidence of life. I think the situation is as simple as that. I don't think there's enough there to hang Lechmere.

                  Best regards

                  Chris
                  Well, Chris, I am going to have to say that I both agree and disagree with you.

                  I donīt think that people who find a woman lying on the pavement will automatically feel her move under their hands just because they hope that she is alive. Thatīs not to say that I exclude it, but overall, I find it likely that Paul felt her move. As I pointed out earlier, I think Paul was very certain about it, which was why he used the word "sure" - he was sure he felt it. Saying that you are sure is not a good indication of you not being sure.

                  I agree, though, that this detail is not enough to hang Lechmere. It takes more. And there IS more.

                  One of the main problems with the case against Lechmere is that whenever a detail pointing to guilt is mentioned, somebody always comes forward and offers an alternative, innocent reason for the detail. And I am the first to say that taken one by one, these details can always be supplied with innocent alterntive explanations.

                  But once there are heaps of details and pointers to guilt, we really should not go out of our way to come up with innocent alterntive explanations, but instead accept that we have a case of probable guilt.

                  Paul said he felt the body move.

                  The body kept bleeding for many, many minutes after Lechmere left it.

                  He did not supply the police with his real name.

                  PC Mizen says that he said nothing about any murder or suicide, pointing to how Lechmere avoided to tell the PC how swerious the errand was.

                  Lechmere did not tell Mizen that he himself was the finder.

                  According to Mizen, Lechmere instead invented another PC, waiting for Mizens assistance.

                  If Lechmere left home at 3.30, he should have passed the murder spot way before 3.45.

                  Although Paul walked behind Lechmere for a hundred yards or so down Bucks Row, he never noticed his fellow carman until he saw him standing close to the body.

                  Lechmere directed Paul to the body, touched the body - and then said he would not touch the body as Paul asked him to help prop Nichols up.

                  Lechmere only came forward after Paul had outed him in Lloyds Weekly.

                  Nichols clothing was pulled over her abdomen, although in the other evisceration cases no such effort was made. Instead all the damage was left very much on display.

                  All the four Spitalfields victims were killed along the two thoroughfares from west to east through the area, thoroughfares that Lechmere likely used.

                  The same victims all seem to have been killed at times that may well be consistent with when Lechmere passed.

                  Liz Stride was killed in the very area where Lechmereīs mother lived and where he would have had lots of acquaintances.

                  Kate Eddowes was killed in Mitre Square, placed more or less alongside the old working route Lechmere would have used when he lived in James Street.

                  The four Spitalfields victims were killed on what was likely Lechmeres working days, whereas the St Georges/Aldgate victims were killed on a Saturday night, when Lechmere was likely free.

                  The victims are not interchangeable; if we had Stride killed at 3-4 AM on a working day, the pattern would not hold up. Similarly, if we had Chapman killed a 1 AM, it would be much the same. As it stands, the murders are all in line with Lechmeres likely routes and his options to visit St Georges when free.

                  If we weigh in the Torso murders (with breathtaking similarities with the Ripper series) and how the last victim there was killed in Pinchin Street and how a bloody rag was found in the exact line from the railway vault to 22 Doveton Street the following day, that does not exactly help Lechmereīs cause.

                  Taken together, I would have no qualms at all sending Charles Lechmere to the gallows. One odd coincidence is fine, two is not - and dozens of them would be naive to accept.

                  This is my choice, and others may be ready and willing to accept ANY amount of circumstantial pointers as long as there is no absolute proof.

                  But I would send him down, not because the body reportedly stirred as Paul felt it, but because there are so very many things weighing the scales of guilt down.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Fisherman View Post

                    On my way to find out, Herlock!
                    Don't do it Fish!

                    In the immortal words of Yossarian, " Live forever, or die in the attempt."

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by barnflatwyngarde View Post

                      Don't do it Fish!

                      In the immortal words of Yossarian, " Live forever, or die in the attempt."
                      I was not contemplating taking the leap myself, B. I have put the question to Ingemar Thiblin, and I hope to receive an answer in days to come. Unless the good professor is on holiday.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Fisherman View Post

                        I was not contemplating taking the leap myself, B. I have put the question to Ingemar Thiblin, and I hope to receive an answer in days to come. Unless the good professor is on holiday.
                        That's a relief!

                        Who would I have to disagree with?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Fisherman View Post
                          Chicken can run a fair way in a decapitated state
                          And can live as long as 18 months!
                          ​​​​​​https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mike...adless_Chicken

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I recently came across an article of a man who was hanged for murder,whom the doctor stated had died instantly,but whose pulse could be detected for some time after.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by barnflatwyngarde View Post

                              That's a relief!

                              Who would I have to disagree with?
                              Nobody has to disagree with me. The option of agreeing is always an open one.

                              Comment

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