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Go Back   Casebook Forums > Ripper Discussions > Suspects > Hutchinson, George

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  #1741  
Old 09-24-2018, 08:30 AM
rjpalmer rjpalmer is offline
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Sorry folks, but this is just more of the usual sloppy thinking we always get when it comes to Macnaghten. The Assistant Chief Constable doesn't investigate crimes; he manages the men who investigate crimes. So, with the exception of Druitt, who is a special circumstance, the men mentioned in the Memo are not HIS suspects, but suspects investigated by other men at Scotland Yard in 1888-1892 and ended up on the short list. (And Mac WAS there during much of this time).


It wasn't Macnaghten who put Michael Ostrog's image in the Police Gazette in October 1888 with warnings about this "dangerous man," it was someone else who was actually employed at Scotland Yard at the time; and you can hardly blame Macnaghten that Ostrog ends up being in France in 1888--he admits openly in the Memo that his whereabouts were not known, and, lo and behold, when Ostrog's incarceration became known, he was dropped as a suspect. So it's a weak argument.


The relevance to this discussion is that Ostrog was considered a viable suspect in October 1888--and this was AFTER the Met had full knowledge of what Joseph Lawende witnessed outside of Mitre Square. The detectives at the Yard were fully aware that none of these eye-witness testimonies were golden. So, whatever you think of Sir Mel, my point stands.


And Ben is simply grandstanding. In flagrante delicto is PRECISELY what Macnaghten means. None of the witnesses actually saw the Ripper murdering a woman, so they best they could offer was circumstantial evidence. Despite Ben's best efforts, it is clear that there is nothing in the Memo or Macnaghten's other writings to show that Hutchinson was discredited; it's just a bad argument. Ditto Anderson, Swanson, etc

Anyway it is obvious to me that the Hutchinson groupies want it both ways. That the Met didn't use Hutchinson to I.D. Sadler is supposedly evidence he was proven to be lying; yet, at the same time they also want to believe that Hutchinson skipped the country in 1889 and set off to Australia to fiddle in front of schoolboys. How is this anything other than pretzel logic? If he couldn't be found in 1891, because he was with the Kangaroos, he could hardly have been a witness in the Sadler affair, now could he? Witnesses move. They fall off the map. So this is quite simply another BAD argument.

If Dew ever discussed the Whitechapel Case with those at Scotland Yard, and I don't know why he wouldn't have, then Dew's comments show that Hutchinson was not thought to be dishonest by those at the Met. Everyone else is silent on the matter.

Last edited by rjpalmer : 09-24-2018 at 08:34 AM.
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  #1742  
Old 09-24-2018, 12:24 PM
Wickerman Wickerman is offline
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Originally Posted by Michael W Richards View Post
This was a very poor venue for an opportunity killer.
Increased risk, increased adrenaline, increased notoriety.
Do you think serial killers do not relish a challenge?
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  #1743  
Old 09-24-2018, 12:37 PM
Bridewell Bridewell is offline
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Originally Posted by Ben View Post
Hi Bridewell,

Speaking strictly for myself, I make no presupposition that Hutchinson was a murderer, nor have I ever insisted that he was one. I don’t even recall ever starting a Hutchinson discussion or opening a new thread on the subject. I have merely responded reactively to various claims along the lines that “if Hutchinson was the killer, he would have gone about things in this way rather than that way” or “If he lied, he would have told a better lie, therefore he didn’t lie at all”. That sort of thing.

Fine. I look at things from every angle too.

Quote:
It tends to be those with a paranoid aversion to the notion of Hutchinson as a suspect - and he is an irrefutably reasonable one from a criminological perspective - who go out of their way to pick the fights, from my experience.
I have no paranoid aversion and I certainly don't go out of my way to pick fights. Some think Hutchinson's account credible; some dismiss it out of hand. probably sensible to reserve judgement as the thing is unknowable one way or the other.

Quote:
You accept uncritically Hutchinson’s claim to have been out of pocket.
Uncritically? No. Hutchinson claimed to have no money. As he was walking the streets in the small hours I see no reason to doubt it. Quite apart from anything else, whilst he might have a motive to lie about where he was, what he was doing and what he had in fact (if he was the killer) done, I don't see any particular reason why he should lie about how many, if any, coins he had in his pocket.

Quote:
Why then did he walk 13 miles in the small hours when he knew he couldn’t gain access to his “usual” lodgings or any other?
Are you accepting uncritically that he walked 13 miles then? I don't know why he walked all that way (if indeed he did) or why his being in funds (if indeed he was) would cause his usual place of abode to open its doors to him after closing time.
Quote:
You also say he had “nothing to do” upon arrival in the district; how about seeking to remedy his homeless predicament as soon as possible, as opposed to engaging in fruitless voyeurism for the best part of an hour followed by more fruitless “walking about”?
Is that something he could resolve if, as he claimed, he didn't have any money?
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All the best,
Ben
And all the best to you too. I may be an argumentative cuss but I truly wish you well.
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Regards, Bridewell.

Last edited by Bridewell : 09-24-2018 at 12:41 PM.
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  #1744  
Old 09-24-2018, 12:47 PM
Batman Batman is offline
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Originally Posted by Sam Flynn View Post
At least Kelly's room had opaque walls and wasn't overlooked by the windows of residential buildings on either side, unlike 29 Hanbury Street at "waking-up time". An open public thoroughfare like Bucks Row wasn't exactly safe, and neither was the gateway of a busy Berner Street club at "going-home time". Whilst Mitre Square was hardly teeming with life, it was nonetheless a public space.

In short, none of the venues was ideal, and a case could be argued that Miller's Court was the safest of the lot.
They were all ideal places. JtR wanted to terrorize Whitechapel society. He deliberately went out with a knife waiting for the opportunity to arise (opportunistic) where he would murder a woman and leave her mutilated for all to see. The victims are posed. They were not simply caught in that position in the act of having sex or had their limbs moved about to make access to organs easier, but for deliberate sexual degradation and humiliation. Shock value that still resonates today. Mary Kelly appears to have been quite unexpected. Indoors and not in such a public place, but we should consider the potential brothel aspects to her place of stay. It wasn't entirely a private residence. It was a place of business. So the shock value would still be there.

The question is how can someone do what they did and vanish into the night.

There are a few possible answers to this.

- Sheer luck, which runs out.
- Expert knowledge of every back-alley semi-private garden path short-cut in Whitechapel.
- No one would suspect it was them if they were looking at them. Which suggests possible official capacity.

JtR was always one step ahead of LE. Literally when we think about the bloody apron. It was like he had a radar and knew were LE would be and wouldn't be. Nowhere is this clearer than Mitre Square.
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  #1745  
Old 09-24-2018, 01:33 PM
Wickerman Wickerman is offline
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Originally Posted by rjpalmer View Post
Hi Wickerman. Here is how I look at it. When Macnaghten states that no one ever saw the Ripper, he is simply making a statement of fact.

He means that no one ever saw the murderer in flagrante delicto, standing over his victim with a blood-stained knife, and thus none of the eyewitnesses, in themselves, could prove a suspect's guilt. He then qualifies this by acknowledging that the 'City PC' near Mitre Square was the best bet; which most take to be a garbled reference to Lawende, who is thus given the honor of being the 'super witness' we see in the Swanson marginalia. [Anderson and Swanson seem to be insisting that this man COULD prove guilt. As such, it is really no mystery why they would rely on Lawende, but I would just as not as soon "go there" in this discussion].


It would be foolish in the extreme to take Mac's statement, as some do, and try to use it as evidence that Hutchinson (and Long and Packer and Schwartz) were all discredited and proven to be liars, or that their accounts were otherwise considered without value. That's not what he is saying or implying.

What Macnaghten is actually admitting is that the police were just as much in the dark as we are as to which witness saw what, and he and his colleagues were quite willing to concede the murderer might have looked like Monty Druitt or even Michael Ostrog, because there was no witness, including Hutchinson, who saw the man in flagrante delicto .

Obviously this does not mean that we shouldn't consider Hutchinson, Long, Schwartz, etc. to be valuable from an investigative point of view.
Thankyou RJ, rationale thinking is hard to come by in Hutchinson threads.
I was aware of the theory Macnaghten's "City PC" could be an error for "City Witness", I don't recall who offered that interpretation, but I suppose it is possible.
You're correct about "it would be foolish", though a number of arguments against G.H. are foolish, or at least ill-informed.
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  #1746  
Old 09-25-2018, 01:01 AM
Ben Ben is offline
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If there’s one thing considerably more annoying than “sloppy thinking” on the subject of Macnaghten, it’s off-topic Macnaghten-related tangents providing an invasive, largely irrelevant distraction on Hutchinson threads.

I was not remotely defending the validity of Macnaghten’s “shortlist” of suspects, nor have I ever been an apologist for his inclusion of Ostrog on said shortlist; and yet I stand accused, for some mysterious reason, of advancing a “weak argument” on the latter subject.

Quote:
In flagrante delicto is PRECISELY what Macnaghten means.
No, it isn’t.

No, it absolutely and permanently isn’t.

We’ve established that already, courtesy of your acknowledgment that his “City PC” was probably a garbled reference to Lawende. Macnaghten clearly understood that his “City PC” had not been a witness to the act of murder itself, but instead merely observed someone in the company of a soon-to-be-murdered victim. It is abundantly clear, therefore, that when Macnaghten stated that nobody “ever say the Whitechapel murderer, unless (etc)”, he was not restricting his “seeing” criteria to men holding dripping knives over bloodied corpses.

Unless you wish to revise your earlier statement and claim instead that an actual “City PC” was witness to a murder in session. Harvey perhaps? I’m intrigued.

Quote:
None of the witnesses actually saw the Ripper murdering a woman, so they best they could offer was circumstantial evidence
Yes, exactly, which meant there was every incentive for using the best “circumstantial evidence” available, which would most assuredly have been Hutchinson’s, had it not been discredited. Far better than floundering with a brief sighting by a man who vehemently expressed doubt that he would recognise his suspect again.

Quote:
That the Met didn't use Hutchinson to I.D. Sadler is supposedly evidence he was proven to be lying; yet the same time they also want to believe that Hutchinson skipped the country in 1889 and set off to Australia to fiddle in front of schoolboys.
I don’t know who “they” is supposed to refer to, but there is not the slightest inconsistency here. On the contrary, it Hutchinson was permitted to “skip the country in 1889”, it would mean one of two things; either the police were a shower of incompetent canutes who casually lost track of their strongest witness, OR they weren’t remotely interested in keeping track of him because they had discredited his statement months ago.

Amazingly, the latter explanation has evidential support in the form of several press reports from November ‘88, and the later reminiscences of senior detectives.

Quote:
If Dew ever discussed the Whitechapel Case with those at Scotland Yard, and I don't know why he wouldn't have, then Dew's comments show that Hutchinson was not thought to be dishonest by those at the Met
If Dew discussed Hutchinson specifically with “those at Scotland Yard”, he would have said so explicitly in his book. Instead, however, he made it extremely clear that he was offering his own personal musings on that particular subject in the absence of any knowledge of the official “Scotland Yard” treatment of Hutchinson.

All the best,
Ben
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  #1747  
Old 09-25-2018, 01:31 AM
Abby Normal Abby Normal is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben View Post
If there’s one thing considerably more annoying than “sloppy thinking” on the subject of Macnaghten, it’s off-topic Macnaghten-related tangents providing an invasive, largely irrelevant distraction on Hutchinson threads.

I was not remotely defending the validity of Macnaghten’s “shortlist” of suspects, nor have I ever been an apologist for his inclusion of Ostrog on said shortlist; and yet I stand accused, for some mysterious reason, of advancing a “weak argument” on the latter subject.



No, it isn’t.

No, it absolutely and permanently isn’t.

We’ve established that already, courtesy of your acknowledgment that his “City PC” was probably a garbled reference to Lawende. Macnaghten clearly understood that his “City PC” had not been a witness to the act of murder itself, but instead merely observed someone in the company of a soon-to-be-murdered victim. It is abundantly clear, therefore, that when Macnaghten stated that nobody “ever say the Whitechapel murderer, unless (etc)”, he was not restricting his “seeing” criteria to men holding dripping knives over bloodied corpses.

Unless you wish to revise your earlier statement and claim instead that an actual “City PC” was witness to a murder in session. Harvey perhaps? I’m intrigued.



Yes, exactly, which meant there was every incentive for using the best “circumstantial evidence” available, which would most assuredly have been Hutchinson’s, had it not been discredited. Far better than floundering with a brief sighting by a man who vehemently expressed doubt that he would recognise his suspect again.



I don’t know who “they” is supposed to refer to, but there is not the slightest inconsistency here. On the contrary, it Hutchinson was permitted to “skip the country in 1889”, it would mean one of two things; either the police were a shower of incompetent canutes who casually lost track of their strongest witness, OR they weren’t remotely interested in keeping track of him because they had discredited his statement months ago.

Amazingly, the latter explanation has evidential support in the form of several press reports from November ‘88, and the later reminiscences of senior detectives.



If Dew discussed Hutchinson specifically with “those at Scotland Yard”, he would have said so explicitly in his book. Instead, however, he made it extremely clear that he was offering his own personal musings on that particular subject in the absence of any knowledge of the official “Scotland Yard” treatment of Hutchinson.

All the best,
Ben
Exactly ben

Long only saw his back.
Schwartz got a pretty good look, but was a foreigner and didnt speak the language.wasnt even at the inquest.
Lawende admits he didnt get a good look and probably couldnt Id.
Coxs blotchy man is supposedly exonerated by hutch and his aman.

Hutch got a great look at his face, remembers everything, heard him speak, thinks he lives in the area and saw him again, went out with police looking for him and said he could positively ID him again!!! He even knows the victim Aman was with. And sees them enter her room, knife sized package in amans hand, shortly before screams of murder are heard.
He should be by far the best witness the police had. And would have been held onto for dear life if he remained as such.

The silence is deafening. Abberline was probably embarresed as hell about his report. Oh yeah dew thinks he got the day wrong.. what a glowing review that.

Its obvious, hutch was dropped as a credible witness pretty quickly, long before he high tailed it to australia ( if aussie george was him).
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Last edited by Abby Normal : 09-25-2018 at 01:34 AM.
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  #1748  
Old 09-25-2018, 01:31 AM
Ben Ben is offline
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Hi Bridewell,

Just to be clear, I wasn’t accusing you personally of picking fights or having paranoid aversions. I’m afraid it’s a feature of these discussions, nonetheless.

Quote:
Some think Hutchinson's account credible; some dismiss it out of hand.
Whereas others, after much careful consideration and taking into account his ultimate treatment at the hands of the police, arrive at the conclusion that his account was at least a partial fabrication.

Quote:
Uncritically? No. Hutchinson claimed to have no money. As he was walking the streets in the small hours I see no reason to doubt it
I’m more concerned at why he decided to walk all the way back from Romford in the small hours in his penniless state. Strictly speaking, he wouldn’t have been lying to the police if he was, in fact, in possession of funds for a bed; that was merely what he told Kelly, presumably because he was unwilling to part with what little dosh he had.

Quote:
Are you accepting uncritically that he walked 13 miles then?
No, quite the contrary.

I suspect the whole Romford claim was a ruse to explain and legitimise his presence on the streets of Whitechapel in the small hours.

The Victoria Home would only have opened its doors after closing time if Hutchinson had pre-purchased a daily or weekly pass. Otherwise, he had to make do with one of the many other lodging houses in the district that closed much later. Cooney’s closed at 2.30, for instance.

Quote:
Is that something he could resolve if, as he claimed, he didn't have any money?
After a fashion, yes, even if it meant dossing down in a doorway or stairwell. Infinitely better than remaining in an upright position and continually walking (adding to his 13 unnecessary miles from Romford), exposed to the elements.

Quote:
And all the best to you too. I may be an argumentative cuss but I truly wish you well.
Likewise Bridewell, although you strike me as one of the least argumentative and least cuss-like contributors to these threads!

Cheers,
Ben
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  #1749  
Old 09-25-2018, 01:45 AM
Ben Ben is offline
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Couldn’t agree more, Abby.

I think some people are kidding themselves ever so slightly if they can’t even acknowledge the conspicuity of Hutchinson’s absence from police documents on the subject of witnesses, written after the murders.

All the best,
Ben
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  #1750  
Old 09-25-2018, 02:34 AM
Trevor Marriott Trevor Marriott is offline
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Originally Posted by Ben View Post
Couldn’t agree more, Abby.

I think some people are kidding themselves ever so slightly if they can’t even acknowledge the conspicuity of Hutchinson’s absence from police documents on the subject of witnesses, written after the murders.

All the best,
Ben
The police didn't write much after the murders because there was not much they could right. They had no positive clues as to the identity of the killer. all we are left with are baseless opinions of police officers in later years, which are as much use as a one legged man in an arse kicking contest.

www.trevormarriott.co.uk
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