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Mr. George R. Sims' Double

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Mr. George R. Sims' Double

Post by Karen on Sat 26 Mar 2011 - 13:14



The strange case of Adolph Beck, twice convicted erroneously for the crimes of his "double," has induced Mr. George R. Sims to relate in yesterday's "Referee" an extraordinary story of his own likeness to "the demented doctor who committed the terrible Jack the Ripper outrages."
"Twice," Mr. Sims writes, "a portrait of me was shown as that of a man who had been seen on several occasions in the neighbourhood on the night of its committal.
"A man who had seen Jack at a coffee-stall in the small hours on the night that two women were killed, and had noticed that his shirt cuff was bloodstained, took my portrait with him afterwards to Dr. Forbes Winslow, and said, "That is the man; on the night of the murders, long before they were discovered, I spoke to him. In conversation I said, "I wonder if we shall hear of another Jack the Ripper murder?" "You'll very likely hear of two tomorrow," was the reply, and the man walked hurriedly away."
At another time, Mr. Sims adds, his portrait was shown to one of the detectives engaged in the hunt for the miscreant.
The danger of being the "double" of such a criminal caused Mr. Sims on one occasion to accidentally run a dangerous risk: -
"I had borrowed from Paul Meritt, the dramatist, a long Japanese knife of a murderous character for melodramatic purposes, and putting it in a black bag, I had gone to the Pavilion Theatre, Whitechapel, late at night. I often wonder what would have happened if some one had cried out, "That's the Ripper," and my black bag had been opened."


Seen last night by an "Express" representative, Mr. Sims said he believed the coffee-stall keeper came across his portrait on the cover of the first edition of "The Social Kaleidoscope," in a shop in a side-street in Soutwark.
"It was a terrible portrait - taken, when I was very ill. My face was drawn and haggard, and surprisingly like the Ripper, whom only the coffee-stall keeper and a policeman ever set eyes upon."
"Dr. Forbes Winslow was at that time engrossed in the mystery of the murders, and had written a good deal about it. That is why the coffee-stall keeper went to him with my portrait. On the occasion when I carried the black bag and Japanese knife I was in a bowler hat, I remember, and was standing among the people, close to the very spot where one of the worst murders was committed."
Mr. Sims said that he had not the slightest doubt in his mind as to who the "Ripper" really was.
"Nor have the police," he continued.
"In the archives of the Home Office are the name and history of the wretched man. He was a mad physician belonging to a highly respected family. He committed the crimes after having been confined in a lunatic asylum as a homicidal maniac."

Source: The Daily Express, London, Monday August 1, 1904, Page 5

Karen Trenouth
Author of: "Epiphany of the Whitechapel Murders"
Author of: "Jack the Ripper: The Satanic Team"

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