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

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  #311  
Old Today, 06:07 AM
Wickerman Wickerman is online now
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Neil is likely gritting his teeth and musing, "why don't they read the book?"

"Witness statements were commonly taken down in writing by a policeman, either upon special report form No.6 (the divisional form, blue in colour) or No.7 (the Central Office form, buff in colour); or within the policeman's pocketbook, and later transcribed word for word upon the relevant form. The policeman, with the witness dictating, must include the witness's words only, and not any of his own. The taking of statements has evolved over the years, due to the huge significance of witness testimony in trials - the sanctity of the process by which information is obtained can be the deciding factor between guilt and innocence."
Capturing Jack the Ripper, Neil Bell, 2014, p.208.

This, if accurate (re: must include the witness's words only, and not any of his own.), is in conflict with later police opinion.
The above also does not address the 'description' part of the witness statement. Which although will use the same adjectives provided by the witness, is published in point by point format typical of police.


Description age about 34 or 35. height 5ft6 complexion pale, dark eyes and eye lashes slight moustache, curled up each end, and hair dark, very surley looking dress long dark coat, collar and cuffs trimmed astracan. And a dark jacket under. Light waistcoat dark trousers dark felt hat turned down in the middle. Button boots and gaiters with white buttons. Wore a very thick gold chain white linen collar. Black tie with horse shoe pin. Respectable appearance walked very sharp. Jewish appearance. Can be identified.

With reference to the quote from Neil's book. If we look at the witness statements taken by Abberline on 9 Nov. at Millers Court, we can see those notes were taken in his pocketbook (note size & shape of paper). Not on a special form like with Hutchinson.
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  #312  
Old Today, 06:13 AM
Wickerman Wickerman is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trevor Marriott View Post

Why should it change from 1888 ?

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There have been several changes in the treatment of the witness & their statement since 1888.
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  #313  
Old Today, 06:21 AM
Wickerman Wickerman is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by harry View Post
Trevor,
But we know that in the Hutchinson statement,the words used were,"can be identified".Of course other descriptions would also surfice,but they were not used, and there is no evidence for Wickerman claim,that the whole paragraph was changed by Badham,from what Hutchinson actually said,to one Badham felt was more appropriate.No evidence whatsoever.
The way I see it you are confusing the 'sequence of events' provided by Hutchinson, with a condensed version of Hutchinson's 'suspect' description, in a format provided by Badham.
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  #314  
Old Today, 06:33 AM
Abby Normal Abby Normal is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darryl Kenyon View Post
I am not a Policeman but with due respect, - Button boots and gaiters with white buttons. Wore a very thick gold chain white linen collar. Black tie with horseshoe pin. That seems to me Hutchinson describing the man in great detail. Not Badham asking did he have a tie on, was he wearing jewellery etc
Also looking at his statement in the Ult Sourcebook his name is at the bottom of it with Badham's underneath. So I am assuming here that Hutchinson read, was happy with Badham's notes, and signed the statement. If he thought that Badham was putting words into his mouth he would surely have said so and not signed the document.
another very sensible post DK!
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"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
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  #315  
Old Today, 06:39 AM
Wickerman Wickerman is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darryl Kenyon View Post
I am not a Policeman but with due respect, - Button boots and gaiters with white buttons. Wore a very thick gold chain white linen collar. Black tie with horseshoe pin. That seems to me Hutchinson describing the man in great detail. Not Badham asking did he have a tie on, was he wearing jewellery etc.
What you suggest might be difficult to distinguish.
The witness gives a sentence to the officer, but the officer rewords what he hears if the witness is not speaking coherently. The officer still used all the words spoken by the witness, just rearranged in a more presentable fashion.

If you look at Bowyer's statement to Abberline on 9 Nov. you will see Abberline took his statement down in third-hand - "he said, he did, he saw". Whereas, in all the other statements he wrote their stories in first-hand - "I said, I did, I saw".

So here we have an example of the interviewing officer using his own phrasing instead of a verbatim account. Abberline also added words of his own "(Insp Beck)" - obviously for clarity.


Quote:
Also looking at his statement in the Ult Sourcebook his name is at the bottom of it with Badham's underneath. So I am assuming here that Hutchinson read, was happy with Badham's notes, and signed the statement. If he thought that Badham was putting words into his mouth he would surely have said so and not signed the document.
Not really, Hutchinson will sign the statement provided he is happy it presents his story as he offered it. This doesn't mean the exact phrasing had to be used.
It must be remembered, the local public were not always well educated. An officer can use more precise structure in a sentence, without changing any words, because of his schooling.
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Last edited by Wickerman : Today at 06:46 AM.
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  #316  
Old Today, 08:02 AM
Darryl Kenyon Darryl Kenyon is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Abby Normal View Post
another very sensible post DK!
Thank you, Abby
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  #317  
Old Today, 08:05 AM
Darryl Kenyon Darryl Kenyon is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wickerman View Post





Hutchinson will sign the statement provided he is happy it presents his story as he offered it.
Ermm I think that is my point, Wick.
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  #318  
Old Today, 08:48 AM
Trevor Marriott Trevor Marriott is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wickerman View Post
Neil is likely gritting his teeth and musing, "why don't they read the book?"

"Witness statements were commonly taken down in writing by a policeman, either upon special report form No.6 (the divisional form, blue in colour) or No.7 (the Central Office form, buff in colour); or within the policeman's pocketbook, and later transcribed word for word upon the relevant form. The policeman, with the witness dictating, must include the witness's words only, and not any of his own. The taking of statements has evolved over the years, due to the huge significance of witness testimony in trials - the sanctity of the process by which information is obtained can be the deciding factor between guilt and innocence."
Capturing Jack the Ripper, Neil Bell, 2014, p.208.

This, if accurate (re: must include the witness's words only, and not any of his own.), is in conflict with later police opinion.
The above also does not address the 'description' part of the witness statement. Which although will use the same adjectives provided by the witness, is published in point by point format typical of police.


Description age about 34 or 35. height 5ft6 complexion pale, dark eyes and eye lashes slight moustache, curled up each end, and hair dark, very surley looking dress long dark coat, collar and cuffs trimmed astracan. And a dark jacket under. Light waistcoat dark trousers dark felt hat turned down in the middle. Button boots and gaiters with white buttons. Wore a very thick gold chain white linen collar. Black tie with horse shoe pin. Respectable appearance walked very sharp. Jewish appearance. Can be identified.

With reference to the quote from Neil's book. If we look at the witness statements taken by Abberline on 9 Nov. at Millers Court, we can see those notes were taken in his pocketbook (note size & shape of paper). Not on a special form like with Hutchinson.
I am sure Hutchinson did not reel of verbatim his statement as it now stands. He must have been assisted, after all the police were taking a statement from one of the only witnesses who may have seen the killer, they would have wanted as much information, and detail as possible. You have obviously never sat down with a witness and said "tell me what happened" the result is at times nothing more than a few sentences, so it has to be expanded upon. A police officer can assist the witness in expanding on what he first says, doesnt mean that the final words in the statement are the police officers. After all at the conclusion the witness is asked to sign the statement as being correct and at that point can make alterations.

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  #319  
Old Today, 09:55 AM
Wickerman Wickerman is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trevor Marriott View Post
I am sure Hutchinson did not reel of verbatim his statement as it now stands. He must have been assisted, after all the police were taking a statement from one of the only witnesses who may have seen the killer, they would have wanted as much information, and detail as possible.
I totally agree, though the extent of the questions are limited to clarifying what has already been stated - in my opinion.

Quote:
You have obviously never sat down with a witness and said "tell me what happened".....
No, I was on the other end, actually

Quote:
......the result is at times nothing more than a few sentences, so it has to be expanded upon.
A point I made earlier, given that the public generally do not think like a policeman. They don't always appreciate what is important.

Quote:
A police officer can assist the witness in expanding on what he first says, doesnt mean that the final words in the statement are the police officers.
My point has been that the words are the same (by the witness), but the structure of the phrase may be improved by the officer.
I think this is what we see in the statement by Hutchinson.
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