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Can we definitively conclude that Alice McKenzie was not killed by the Ripper?

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  • Can we definitively conclude that Alice McKenzie was not killed by the Ripper?

    I always assumed that Alice McKenzie was not a Ripper victim. Now after reading more about the case, I am not so sure. Is there a definitive argument one way or another?

  • #2
    Originally posted by Losmandris View Post
    I always assumed that Alice McKenzie was not a Ripper victim. Now after reading more about the case, I am not so sure. Is there a definitive argument one way or another?
    hi los
    some of the drs and police thought she was, some didn't. today consensus is mixed. I think she probably was:
    same victimology
    same location
    at night
    throat cut
    abdomen gashed
    unsolved
    and the clincher for me- she was found with her skirt hiked up like most of the rest.
    "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


    • #3
      Abby outlines the reasons for inclusions. The typical argument against her inclusion is that the gashes to her abdomen are much less severe than in the C5 (other than Stride, of course) and appear to have been inflicted by a much smaller knife. Dr. Phillips, though he indicated he thought some anatomical skill was involved, considered her unlikely to be a victim of JtR. Dr. Bond, however, believed the opposite.

      Of all the post-Kelly murders, this is the one I think is most similar to the C5 set. It's also in the same general area as the others. I see no reason why JtR, if it was him, couldn't have a different knife on this occasion, one not large enough to do what he did in the past. The lack of the slashing to the face, though (as occurred with Eddowes and Kelly) is missing and that could have been done.

      Other possible ideas can be dependant upon what assumptions one makes about JtR. For example, a lot of mutilation murderers have a mental illness with delusions of some sort. Things like believing others have something hidden inside them (demons, snakes, aliens, etc) or that they themselves suffer from some bizarre illness that requires them to consume blood (i.e. Richard Chase believed his blood was being stolen and he had to consume blood to stay alive), and so forth. So, if one presumes that JtR had some sort of psychotic break, complete with some complex delusions (note, this doesn't mean he couldn't interact with others, he might seem a bit odd or bizarre but not necessarily; delusions do not necessarily make someone a raving lunatic) then one could be seeing him either in a phase where the delusions are not as strong, or even that his break with reality is more complete and he's not as focused, etc. Of course, if the initial presumption is wrong about JtR, things like that do not follow.

      Anyway, Alice McKenzie is certainly worth reading up on and considering very closely. If she was killed by JtR, there are a number of proposed suspects who could be ruled out. If she wasn't, though, you might rule out someone in error.

      - Jeff

      Comment


      • #4
        Certainly worth considering. I favour that she wasn’t but who knows. If I express doubt I tend to get accused in some quarters of doing so because if Mackenzie was a ripper victim then Druitt is out but this isn’t the reason. She could have been.
        Regards

        Herlock




        “ Herlock is the cleverest man that I’ve ever met.” - Stephen Hawking.
        “ I wish that I could have achieved half as much as Herlock.”- Neil Armstrong.
        “ What a voice Herlock has.” - Luciano Pavarotti.
        “ I wish that I could dump Harry for Herlock.” - Meghan Markle.
        “ I know that it’s not good to be jealous but I just can’t help it.” - John Holmes.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by JeffHamm View Post
          Abby outlines the reasons for inclusions. The typical argument against her inclusion is that the gashes to her abdomen are much less severe than in the C5 (other than Stride, of course) and appear to have been inflicted by a much smaller knife. Dr. Phillips, though he indicated he thought some anatomical skill was involved, considered her unlikely to be a victim of JtR. Dr. Bond, however, believed the opposite.

          Of all the post-Kelly murders, this is the one I think is most similar to the C5 set. It's also in the same general area as the others. I see no reason why JtR, if it was him, couldn't have a different knife on this occasion, one not large enough to do what he did in the past. The lack of the slashing to the face, though (as occurred with Eddowes and Kelly) is missing and that could have been done.

          Other possible ideas can be dependant upon what assumptions one makes about JtR. For example, a lot of mutilation murderers have a mental illness with delusions of some sort. Things like believing others have something hidden inside them (demons, snakes, aliens, etc) or that they themselves suffer from some bizarre illness that requires them to consume blood (i.e. Richard Chase believed his blood was being stolen and he had to consume blood to stay alive), and so forth. So, if one presumes that JtR had some sort of psychotic break, complete with some complex delusions (note, this doesn't mean he couldn't interact with others, he might seem a bit odd or bizarre but not necessarily; delusions do not necessarily make someone a raving lunatic) then one could be seeing him either in a phase where the delusions are not as strong, or even that his break with reality is more complete and he's not as focused, etc. Of course, if the initial presumption is wrong about JtR, things like that do not follow.

          Anyway, Alice McKenzie is certainly worth reading up on and considering very closely. If she was killed by JtR, there are a number of proposed suspects who could be ruled out. If she wasn't, though, you might rule out someone in error.

          - Jeff
          hi jeff
          agree. I think if it was the ripper it could also have to do with him being interrupted and or wasted, sick or just not into it any more/burnout.
          "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


          • #6
            I always assumed the nine month gap between the murder of MJK and the murder of Alice as factor against her being a victim of the same perpetrator. Again now not so sure as he could have gone to ground for a whole variety of reasons.

            Tristan

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Abby Normal View Post

              hi jeff
              agree. I think if it was the ripper it could also have to do with him being interrupted and or wasted, sick or just not into it any more/burnout.
              Maybe, but even the throat wounds are more shallow, do not sever the wind pipe, yet he had time to make a few cuts to the abdomen. But, there are two cuts to the throat, which JtR seemed to do most times, but usually the 2nd was a complete circle down to the spine, while in this case it was two 4 inch cuts (still not small, but a bit of a change - whether that's important or not is open to debate).

              I doubt burnout/just not into it, would be the case. That would be highly unusual for a serial murderer (to be sort of done with it, but do one more, and think "meh, not my thing anymore"). Sick, maybe, but then, if he's taken a break for so long, why go out when he's ill? (I'm thinking physically ill here, not mentally).

              Not saying it can't work as an idea, but it seems to me that the copy-cat idea, someone killed her then took a few swipes at the abdomen to make it look like JtR, is a strong alternative to "JtR did it, but had a different knife that was unsuitable." It probably needs more serious scrutiny, to go over all the info there is, and see if there's anything that's been overlooked.

              - Jeff

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Losmandris View Post
                I always assumed the nine month gap between the murder of MJK and the murder of Alice as factor against her being a victim of the same perpetrator. Again now not so sure as he could have gone to ground for a whole variety of reasons.

                Tristan
                Hi Tristan,

                Yah, while the C5 all occur quite rapidly, with a lengthy delay until McKenzie's murder, that's not all that unusual. And if one goes with the idea that JtR might be psychotic, psychosis isn't always a permanent state, it can come and go. The gap may just reflect a period of lucidity. Or, it reflects winter stopped him, and he was able to control himself for a bit after that. If JtR is McKenzie's killer (big if), it may be his life stablized over that winter, then something set him off again. Hard to say, and just throwing out possibilities, not facts.

                Anyway, the gap, though it looks odd, when one examines other serial criminals, there can be a flurry of activity, then nothing, then another flurry or a few single events spread out, etc. The temporal patterns can be quite varied, and without solving the case, it's hard to know what that is.

                - Jeff

                Comment


                • #9
                  I believe the killer commonly referred to as Jack the Ripper was much more likely to have been a spree killer rather than a serial killer, It looks to me based on the murders of Polly then Annie that someone who had struggled with self control and urges lost the fight. He could have burned out quickly like a lit match. The fact they occur within a 2 week period is also telling, Im not sure once the bottle was uncorked that he could put it back on. I believe he was an inspiration for some future acts, Alice may be one of that group. But Im comfortable with the idea that he either left, was jailed or institutionalized, or he died.. before Christmas of 88.

                  What troubles me about some of the officials remarks is that there is an attempt to explain this away and suggest they got their man, despite the fact that in 96' they start up the whole Ripper response engine again based on a letter containing some of the GSG. Its that issue that makes me wonder whether they ever knew who he was or why these happened, and he was removed from action quietly and unofficially. Maybe by family, or again, by death. I don't think he was officially in custody at any time, but I do think he was off the streets before Alice was killed.

                  What was Monroe's Hot potato I wonder.
                  Michael Richards

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by JeffHamm View Post

                    Maybe, but even the throat wounds are more shallow, do not sever the wind pipe, yet he had time to make a few cuts to the abdomen. But, there are two cuts to the throat, which JtR seemed to do most times, but usually the 2nd was a complete circle down to the spine, while in this case it was two 4 inch cuts (still not small, but a bit of a change - whether that's important or not is open to debate).

                    I doubt burnout/just not into it, would be the case. That would be highly unusual for a serial murderer (to be sort of done with it, but do one more, and think "meh, not my thing anymore"). Sick, maybe, but then, if he's taken a break for so long, why go out when he's ill? (I'm thinking physically ill here, not mentally).

                    Not saying it can't work as an idea, but it seems to me that the copy-cat idea, someone killed her then took a few swipes at the abdomen to make it look like JtR, is a strong alternative to "JtR did it, but had a different knife that was unsuitable." It probably needs more serious scrutiny, to go over all the info there is, and see if there's anything that's been overlooked.

                    - Jeff
                    hi jeff
                    pretty much agree-I would tend to think it had more to do with being wasted and or interrupted then the other things I mentioned-was just thinking out loud.

                    re-copy cat? meh. that sort of thing is Hollywood movie stuff. as far as I am aware theres only been one case I know of in the history of crime where someone tried to make a murder look like another serial killer-I forgot the killers name but he intentionally tried to make it look like a manson murder, but even in this case manson was a known murderer, unlike the ripper killings, which were still unsolved. and that being said, what would be the point of an unsub trying to make it look like another unsub, a famous one at that, when all he would doing would be putting his deed in a much higher light of scrutiny and putting himself in the frame of a whole series of murders.
                    I think a not having the right knife or my previous idea of being too inebriated and or interrupted is much more viable than the copy cat idea.
                    "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


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by JeffHamm View Post

                      Hi Tristan,

                      Yah, while the C5 all occur quite rapidly, with a lengthy delay until McKenzie's murder, that's not all that unusual. And if one goes with the idea that JtR might be psychotic, psychosis isn't always a permanent state, it can come and go. The gap may just reflect a period of lucidity. Or, it reflects winter stopped him, and he was able to control himself for a bit after that. If JtR is McKenzie's killer (big if), it may be his life stablized over that winter, then something set him off again. Hard to say, and just throwing out possibilities, not facts.

                      Anyway, the gap, though it looks odd, when one examines other serial criminals, there can be a flurry of activity, then nothing, then another flurry or a few single events spread out, etc. The temporal patterns can be quite varied, and without solving the case, it's hard to know what that is.

                      - Jeff
                      hi jeff
                      I could be wrong but serial killers with serious mental illness, like chase and mullins, usually don't have such long layoffs and or due to long periods of "lucidity".
                      "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


                      • #12
                        Anyone that thinks highly publicized acts committed by killers are not emulated/mimicked/copied/replicated/duplicated/mirrored/ in later crimes hasn't read a paper.
                        Michael Richards

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Michael W Richards View Post
                          I believe the killer commonly referred to as Jack the Ripper was much more likely to have been a spree killer rather than a serial killer, It looks to me based on the murders of Polly then Annie that someone who had struggled with self control and urges lost the fight. He could have burned out quickly like a lit match. The fact they occur within a 2 week period is also telling, Im not sure once the bottle was uncorked that he could put it back on. I believe he was an inspiration for some future acts, Alice may be one of that group. But Im comfortable with the idea that he either left, was jailed or institutionalized, or he died.. before Christmas of 88.

                          What troubles me about some of the officials remarks is that there is an attempt to explain this away and suggest they got their man, despite the fact that in 96' they start up the whole Ripper response engine again based on a letter containing some of the GSG. Its that issue that makes me wonder whether they ever knew who he was or why these happened, and he was removed from action quietly and unofficially. Maybe by family, or again, by death. I don't think he was officially in custody at any time, but I do think he was off the streets before Alice was killed.

                          What was Monroe's Hot potato I wonder.
                          I don't think there's really a consensus on what constitutes a "spree killer" vs a "serial killer". The initial idea was that a spree was multiple murders, in different locations, without a cooling off period. But, how long constitutes a cooling off period isn't really defined all that well, and the terms become almost interchangeable and the same person is described as a spree by some and serial by others (sometimes even both by the same authors). I don't think there are any specific characteristics of the offender that end up being different either, meaning, during the investigation one might think "hmmm, could be serial or could be spree", and then when it gets solved, note that "Ahhh, they've got characteristic X, so it was a spree after all". There may be some strong opinions out there, but like most strong opinions, they are often supported with anecdotes (i.e. single case studies) rather than systematic studies - and that's being generous as often there is nothing to support the opinion except more opinion. (Not referring to you or your post here, rather, just a note of caution with regards to getting too caught up in thinking there's a difference between spree and serial killers; that's hard to know given there's no standard definition that clearly allows one to classify a series one way or the other).

                          There are probably cases where someone does commit a series of offenses and then stops and never again. The murderous events may have occurred at a point where the offender is under some sort of upheaval in their life, and has a large number of "stressors" all come together and they can't handle it. Some killers, like Denis Rader, do seem to get things under control and stop for long periods of time (though he says he was thinking of doing another murder, what he says and what he might have actually done are not necessarily the same thing). Also, the East Area Rapist/Original Night Stalker (Joseph deAngelo) eventually stopped for years before finally being identified. So, while JtR may have been removed from action somehow (death, incarceration, illness, etc), it's not impossible that he got things under control. There's no evidence that the Zodiac committed any more crimes after killing Paul Stine, despite his letters claiming otherwise.

                          - Jeff

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Abby Normal View Post

                            hi jeff
                            I could be wrong but serial killers with serious mental illness, like chase and mullins, usually don't have such long layoffs and or due to long periods of "lucidity".
                            Psychosis does wax and wane for many people. Richard Chase committed his crimes all within a month I think it was, so it's anybody's guess if he would have stopped for a while. Chase was, however, pretty psychotic a lot of the time, but it usually manifested with him killing animals. Herbert Mullins also committed his murders over a short period of 4 months, but it looks more like two clusters close together (a smaller one late 1972, and a larger one around Jan/Feb 1973). He may have had a lull for a couple months, then a second larger psychotic break.

                            Still, psychosis, particularly when left untreated, does not just go away, so even if it does vary in its intensity, it does seem odd that even if McKenzie is included, where's the next bout?

                            - Jeff

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by JeffHamm View Post

                              Psychosis does wax and wane for many people. Richard Chase committed his crimes all within a month I think it was, so it's anybody's guess if he would have stopped for a while. Chase was, however, pretty psychotic a lot of the time, but it usually manifested with him killing animals. Herbert Mullins also committed his murders over a short period of 4 months, but it looks more like two clusters close together (a smaller one late 1972, and a larger one around Jan/Feb 1973). He may have had a lull for a couple months, then a second larger psychotic break.

                              Still, psychosis, particularly when left untreated, does not just go away, so even if it does vary in its intensity, it does seem odd that even if McKenzie is included, where's the next bout?

                              - Jeff
                              imho its a moot point because the ripper wasnt psychotic.


                              "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

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