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Francis Thompson. The Perfect Suspect.

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  • Originally posted by MrBarnett View Post
    To me, ‘I have shaved with a dissecting scalpel before now’ suggests that at some unspecified point in the past, in the absence of a razor, he had shaved with a dissecting knife. Possibly while at college.

    To Richard it suggests he was ‘used’ to shaving with a knife and therefore must have been carrying a ‘razor sharp’ one during his homeless period.
    Not quite a correct summary but nice try.
    Last edited by Richard Patterson; 01-01-2019, 04:39 AM.
    Author of

    "Jack the Ripper, The Works of Francis Thompson"

    http://www.francisjthompson.com/

    Comment


    • Originally posted by Richard Patterson View Post
      Not quite a correct summary but nice try.
      What happened to ‘well put’?

      Perhaps you can enlighten us as to how you conclude Thompson was carrying a razor sharp knife in 1888 on the basis of the anecdotal ‘I have shaved with a dissecting scalpel before now’.

      Do you think that seemingly throw-away remark would have weighed heavily against him in a court of law?

      Comment


      • This just isn’t true is it, Richard?

        Opportunity:
        Thompson was able to walk the streets at all hours. Being homeless for 3 years in the East End, he was part of the landscape and could come and go without rousing suspicion.


        Why say he was homeless in the East End for 3 years when you know that he wasn’t?

        Comment


        • Originally posted by MrBarnett View Post
          What happened to ‘well put’?

          Perhaps you can enlighten us as to how you conclude Thompson was carrying a razor sharp knife in 1888 on the basis of the anecdotal ‘I have shaved with a dissecting scalpel before now’.

          Do you think that seemingly throw-away remark would have weighed heavily against him in a court of law?
          When Thompson wrote that he had shaved with a dissecting scalpel before now it would have meant at a time prior to February 1889, when the letter was written. It's possible that he may have been referring to a practice he engaged in at some time before his homelessness such as when he attended medical school. However it is far more likely that he would have used his dissecting scalpel to have shaved when he was without a razor blade. There is only one time that we know that occurred and this was right before 1889, during the murders. If this were not true then there would have been no reason for him to have requested a razor in his letter in the first place.
          Author of

          "Jack the Ripper, The Works of Francis Thompson"

          http://www.francisjthompson.com/

          Comment


          • Originally posted by MrBarnett View Post
            This just isn’t true is it, Richard?

            Opportunity:
            Thompson was able to walk the streets at all hours. Being homeless for 3 years in the East End, he was part of the landscape and could come and go without rousing suspicion.


            Why say he was homeless in the East End for 3 years when you know that he wasn’t?
            You are right, when I wrote these words my research showed to me that he spent the bulk of his homeless years in the East End. Now I would refine this claim. Instead it is more truer to say that Thompson spent much of his homeless years in the West End of London, only residing in the East End area during the months of the murders. I think this to be more accurate and it also happens to be a stronger case for Thompson being suspected since his moving to the East End coincides with the Ripper murders.
            Author of

            "Jack the Ripper, The Works of Francis Thompson"

            http://www.francisjthompson.com/

            Comment


            • Originally posted by Richard Patterson View Post
              You are right, when I wrote these words my research showed to me that he spent the bulk of his homeless years in the East End. Now I would refine this claim. Instead it is more truer to say that Thompson spent much of his homeless years in the West End of London, only residing in the East End area during the months of the murders. I think this to be more accurate and it also happens to be a stronger case for Thompson being suspected since his moving to the East End coincides with the Ripper murders.

              Is there any hard evidence at all that he was in the East End during August-November, 1888?

              Comment


              • Originally posted by Richard Patterson View Post
                When Thompson wrote that he had shaved with a dissecting scalpel before now it would have meant at a time prior to February 1889, when the letter was written. It's possible that he may have been referring to a practice he engaged in at some time before his homelessness such as when he attended medical school. However it is far more likely that he would have used his dissecting scalpel to have shaved when he was without a razor blade. There is only one time that we know that occurred and this was right before 1889, during the murders. If this were not true then there would have been no reason for him to have requested a razor in his letter in the first place.
                In February, 1889 he was without a razor and presumably also without a dissecting knife or he could have continued his practice of shaving with one.

                The truth is we do not know whether he carried any kind of shaving implement in 1888 or whether he spent any time at all in the East End during the murders.

                As for resentment towards his Chelsea prostitute, we have only Thompson’s own words to go on, and he invariably spoke of her in terms of affection and gratitude. She left him because, she said, ‘they [the Meynell’s etc] will not understand our relationship’. She had rescued him from utter degradation, then when she felt her presence might hinder his career, she left. What had he to be resentful of?

                Comment


                • Originally posted by Richard Patterson View Post
                  Out of the more than 100 Ripper suspects ever named, only one can be shown to have had a knife at the time of the murders, where they occurred - Francis Thompson. In 1888, he was a mentally ill, drug addicted man who carried a razor- sharp dissecting knife, kept from his years of studying medicine. He had already been in trouble with the police and had a history of arson, theft, and mutilating. His sole purpose for living in the Providence Row refuge, less than 100 yards from where Jack the Ripper victim, Mary Kelly, was killed was to find a prostitute who had humiliated him. He had already written about ripping their stomachs open.

                  But don't worry about any of that because it all comes down to interpreting his poetry.
                  hi Richard


                  and mutilating

                  he had a history of mutilation? of what? can you please expound on this.
                  "Is all that we see or seem
                  but a dream within a dream?"

                  -Edgar Allan Poe


                  "...the man and the peaked cap he is said to have worn
                  quite tallies with the descriptions I got of him."

                  -Frederick G. Abberline

                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by Abby Normal View Post
                    hi Richard





                    he had a history of mutilation? of what? can you please expound on this.
                    Cut himself shaving?😉

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by Richard Patterson View Post
                      You are right, when I wrote these words my research showed to me that he spent the bulk of his homeless years in the East End. Now I would refine this claim. Instead it is more truer to say that Thompson spent much of his homeless years in the West End of London, only residing in the East End area during the months of the murders. I think this to be more accurate and it also happens to be a stronger case for Thompson being suspected since his moving to the East End coincides with the Ripper murders.
                      But then it negates your "opportunity" argument.

                      ". . .he was part of the landscape and could come and go without rousing suspicion."

                      A new arrival gets noticed.

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by APerno View Post
                        But then it negates your "opportunity" argument.

                        ". . .he was part of the landscape and could come and go without rousing suspicion."

                        A new arrival gets noticed.
                        Some more so than others.

                        Thompson's biographer, John Walsh, claimed the poet had an 'erratic walk' emphasised by a 'peculiarity in the gait'. The kids in his home town used to barrack him and call him 'elastic legs'.

                        It is absolutely not known how much time Thompson spent in the East End or whether he spent any time at all in Spitalfields in 1888.
                        Last edited by MrBarnett; 01-02-2019, 05:41 PM.

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by Richard Patterson View Post
                          Facts on Francis Thompson as a Jack the Ripper suspect. He was a poet who had trained as a surgeon for 6-years at a prestigious medical school before one coroner of the murders concluded that Jack the Ripper must have had considerable anatomical skill and knowledge.

                          Right before the murders of these prostitutes, Thompson broke up with one and wrote about killing women of that profession. He was carrying a razor sharp knife, showed signs of severe mental illness and he was known to police.

                          Just with these facts, there is no other suspect, or anyone living or dead, anywhere in the world, pointing so strongly to being the Ripper.
                          This so often happens, the strength of an argument is diminished by a statement that is unsupported within the known evidence. The above would make someone a person of interest, but "so strongly pointed" is misleading and based only on some misc. characteristics and circumstantial evidence. We could name a dozen who shared the scenery and many of the traits with the above, none of which has any detected link to any of these murders.

                          The honest statement would be that there is no legitimate single suspect for any Canonical murder, or for many of the others in the Unsolved Files.
                          Michael Richards

                          Comment


                          • Thompson is said to have stayed at a Salvation Army lodging house during his homeless period. The first of these was opened at 21, West India Dock Road in February, 1888. According to Richard, this is one of the pieces of evidence of his presence in the East End during the period of the murders.

                            Richard seems to believe that Thompson, the arsonist was responsible for the dock fires on the night of the Buck’s Row murder. He used them to create a diversion apparently. Richard tells us that the fires were at the West India docks or, as he also calls them, the West India London Docks.

                            The unsuspecting reader who is not familiar with the case or the East End will probably think ‘West India Dock Road/West India (London) Docks - must be next door to each other, surely’. The fact is that the West India Docks and London Docks were different places, some distance apart. The fires took place at the London/Shadwell Docks, not the WID near where Thompson apparently stayed at some point in 1888.

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