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  • AC and TOD

    Hello. I think the time has come to talk about Annie Chapman's time of death.

    Dr G B Phillips testified:

    “On Saturday last I was called by the police at 6.20 a.m. to 29, Hanbury-street, and arrived at half-past six. . . Stiffness of the limbs was not marked, but it was commencing.”

    When does this rigor mortis commence?

    "Rigor mortis refers to the state of a body after death, in which the muscles become stiff. It commences after around 3 hours"
    http://www.deathonline.net/decomposi...gor_mortis.htm

    So a reasonable TOD would be between 3:30 and 4:00.

    Often, the outdoor temperature is cited to account for this discrepancy, but the lowered temperatures had no such effect on Liz and Kate.

    Thoughts?

    LC

  • #2
    Look up "cadaveric spasm", or "instantaneous rigidity", Lynn.
    Kind regards, Sam Flynn

    "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

    Comment


    • #3
      Note, also, Inspector Chandler's inquest testimony. He was on the scene almost immediately after the body was discovered, and some time before Phillips, and testifies that there were parts of Annie's flesh lying above her shoulder in a pool of blood. If the body had been there for as long as Phillips (initially) estimated, there would have been precious little "pool" left for Chandler to see.
      Kind regards, Sam Flynn

      "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)

      Comment


      • #4
        When asked at the inquest about the time of death, Phillips said:
        "I should say at least two hours, and probably more; but it is right to say that it was a fairly cold morning, and that the body would be more apt to cool rapidly from its having lost the greater portion of its blood."

        I think that makes it clear that his estimate of the time of death was based mainly on the temperature of the body rather than other factors.

        Although doctors at that time believed they could make reasonably accurate calculations of the time of death based on body temperature, science has moved on since then, and we know that the estimation of time of death is subject to a lot of uncertainty.

        Here are a couple of links to relevant pages on the website of the Centre for Forensic and Legal Medicine at the University of Dundee:
        http://www.dundee.ac.uk/forensicmedi.../timedeath.pdf
        http://www.dundee.ac.uk/forensicmedi...am-upto23C.pdf

        I think that if anyone looks at them with an open mind, and considers how accurately Phillips would have been capable of gauging the temperature of the body, and also takes into account all the additional sources of uncertainty, they will agree that the margin of error for his estimate of the time of Chapman's death can't realistically be less than an hour or two.

        Comment


        • #5
          hour

          Hello Chris. If GBP is off by an hour, that yields 4:30 AM. At least that's not after daylight.

          The best.
          LC

          Comment


          • #6
            pool

            Hello Sam. GBP was talking about rigor mortis, not another condition. At least, taht's what he said.

            I just reread Chandler's testimony. Where does he say pool of blood?

            The best.
            LC

            Comment


            • #7
              I think Lynn's interest in this question is a valid concern, because the TOD relates to both stories that we generally use as possible Annie sightings or in the case of Cadosche, being heard. Timings are of course the issue between them.

              Whether its the "shabby genteel" or "no", both are thought to be possible Chapman based incidents.

              Neither take place at around 4:30am.

              Best regards all.

              Comment


              • #8
                concerns

                Hello Mike.

                "I think Lynn's interest in this question is a valid concern, because the TOD relates to both stories that we generally use as possible Annie sightings"

                Right you are! Consider:

                "Well, we KNOW the ripper looked foreign. After all, Mrs. Long said so."

                and

                "We know the ripper was fearless. After all, he killed AC AFTER sunup."

                Compare to:

                "The ripper was not after organs. After all, he never took any from Liz."

                The best.
                LC

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by lynn cates View Post
                  Hello Chris. If GBP is off by an hour, that yields 4:30 AM. At least that's not after daylight.
                  As he saw the body at 6.30, if his two-hour estimate is off by an hour doesn't that bring us to 5.30?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    The only thing I agree with Phillips on is Annie's time of death. The three main witnesses are just too convenient and I can't logically see the Ripper killing Chapman during daylight, however desperate he was. Someone [more reliable] would've seen something.

                    Long doesn't come forward with her sighting till some time after the death (I can't remember exactly how many days it was if that's what it was); Cadosche conveniently alleviates himself twice and the precise two times that something beyond that fence happens; and the boot-cutting fella, please. Not only was he suspected himself at one point of being involved if memory serves, but also the alleged 'fact' that he just happened to be cutting his boot right where Annie's head should've been is a little bit much to take 100% realistically in addition to the other two witnesses. I'm not one for these kind of theories but isn't it possible that maybe, just maybe, they were after their five minutes of limelight and to get paid for their stories (operative word? )?

                    Why did no-one see Annie wandering the streets from the time she left the lodgings till the time she was murdered? There's a good two, three hours missing with no further sightings whatsoever. I think it's more likely that the reason being was because she was already lying dead and cooling in that yard as the Ripper's second victim at the time.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      reckoning

                      Hello Chris. Yes. I was thinking about the 3 hour+ onset of rigor and his "possibly longer" dictum.

                      The best.
                      LC

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        plan B

                        Hello M & P. Ah! An ally! Yes, all that you say is correct.

                        As you recall, Richardson had NO FEWER than 3 stories to give the police and inquest (shades of Matthew Packer!). The first involved NOT going into the yard. The last story was a repudiation of the second story.

                        Here's one more observation. AC left her lodgings shortly after 1:30. She optimistically declared she'd be back soon. She was not.

                        Now my question is this. When does one throw up the sponge and adopt plan B? If you don't have doss money by 5:30 (after sunup and nearly 4 hours of searching) what's the point?

                        The best.
                        LC

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by lynn cates View Post
                          As you recall, Richardson had NO FEWER than 3 stories to give the police and inquest (shades of Matthew Packer!). The first involved NOT going into the yard. The last story was a repudiation of the second story.
                          Could you explain what you mean by "3 stories"? There may be some minor discrepancies in Richardson's evidence (and in the reporting of it), but I think it's a great exaggeration to say he told three different stories.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Richardson

                            Hello Chris. I should be delighted.

                            Story 1:

                            [Coroner] Did you see John Richardson? - I saw him about a quarter to seven o'clock. He told me he had been to the house that morning about a quarter to five. He said he came to the back door and looked down to the cellar, to see if all was right, and then went away to his work.
                            [Coroner] Did he say anything about cutting his boot? - No.
                            [Coroner] Did he say that he was sure the woman was not there at that time? - Yes.
                            By the Jury: The back door opens outwards into the yard, and swung on the left hand to the palings where the body was. If Richardson were on the top of the steps he might not have seen the body. He told me he did not go down the steps.

                            Story 2:

                            I went to 29, Hanbury-street, between 4,45 a.m. and 4.50 a.m. on Saturday last. I went to see if the cellar was all secure, as some while ago there was a robbery there of some tools. I have been accustomed to go on market mornings since the time when the cellar was broken in.
                            [Coroner] Was the front door open? - No, it was closed. I lifted the latch and went through the passage to the yard door.
                            [Coroner] Did you go into the yard? - No, the yard door was shut. I opened it and sat on the doorstep, and cut a piece of leather off my boot with an old table-knife, about five inches long. I kept the knife upstairs at John-street. I had been feeding a rabbit with a carrot that I had cut up, and I put the knife in my pocket. I do not usually carry it there. After cutting the leather off my boot I tied my boot up, and went out of the house into the market. I did not close the back door. It closed itself. I shut the front door.

                            Story 3:

                            John Richardson (recalled) produced the knife - a much-worn dessert knife - with which he had cut his boot. He added that as it was not sharp enough he had borrowed another one at the market.

                            Notice that, in story 1 he did NOT go down the steps.

                            In story 2, not only did he go down the steps, he sat on one and had his feet close to where AC would have been, had she been there. Also, in this story he cut off the leather.

                            In the final redaction he did NOT cut the leather—knife too dull.

                            In consequence, I put it to you that such shifting testimony must be regarded as unreliable. I suggest that Richardson, like Packer at another time and regarding another case, sought publicity and hence changed his story to suit the needs of the case.

                            The best.
                            LC

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Lynn

                              To be honest I think these are the kind of minor discrepancies that can be found in most witness testimony.

                              Yes, there's a discrepancy between Chandler's testimony ("story 1") -according to which Richardson had said he did not go down the steps - and some reports of Richardson's own testimony ("story 2") - according to which he sat on the second step with his feet on the flagstones of the yard (though the version you quote has him sitting instead on the doorstep). On the other hand, he is quite clear in his own testimony that he did not go into the yard.

                              And that's about as far as it goes. The fact that he didn't initially mention to Chandler that he had sat on the step is at most an omission, not a discrepancy, and considering the conditions under which the conversation took place, I wouldn't attach too much importance to it.

                              As for the other example, it's simply not true that "In the final redaction he did NOT cut the leather". In all the reports of that bit of testimony that I can see - including the one you quote - Richardson is said to have cut his boot with his own knife. The point about having later borrowed a sharper knife doesn't even appear in other reports. In any case, it may simply be that he needed a sharper knife to finish the job off.

                              Comment

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