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Melbourne Woman's Strange Story

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Melbourne Woman's Strange Story

Post by Karen on Tue 12 Jul 2011 - 18:46

JACK THE RIPPER.
MELBOURNE WOMAN'S STRANGE STORY.

"HE WAS THE MURDERER."
Melbourne, July 25.

A tall, dark, statuesque woman, apparently about 45 years of age, called at a Melbourne newspaper office this morning, and explained that she was the lady referred to in the cable messages and in local statements concerning the Whitechapel murders. She said she had only written once to King Edward about the murders, and had not, as the detectives stated, continually written to the King concerning Jack the Ripper and other grievances.
"I wrote to the King," the woman explained, "because neither the Melbourne detectives nor the authorities at Scotland Yard had cleared up the mystery concerning Jack the Ripper, though I gave them the strongest of clues."
Then in a calm, convincing way the woman told her story. She first gave the name of the man, who, she said, had confessed to her that he committed the crimes. Then she gave her own name and the names and addresses of people who could, she declared, in one way or another, confirm her statements as to her relations with this man. Some of the persons named are well-known in the city.
"Jack was a ne'er do well," she said, "a native of Melbourne, who was educated at one of the public schools here. Before I met him, in 1902, he had been to South Africa and Europe, and had been married. I think he must have broken his wife's heart, for she died soon, and he told me that he sank very low in London. He got in time to the slum shelters. He had been in his boyhood days a close friend of a Collins-street doctor, now, dead, and he told me he frequently drove about with this doctor, and watched him conducting post-mortem examinations at the morgue and elsewhere. Further than the knowledge Jack picked up from this doctor he knew nothing about surgery or medicine. I got to know him some time after he came back to Melbourne from London. We lived together in various parts of Melbourne. I used to supply him with money, and I believe he got a little from his people, a very wealthy family.

"You were Jack the Ripper."

"Jack was always fond of reading 'Lloyd's News' and 'Reynold's Weekly News," and one night he was reading from one of the papers the trial of Jas. Canham Reid, who was styled the Birmingham murderer. This Reid became acquainted with two sisters of great beauty. He married one and betrayed and murdered the other. I said, "What a fearful thing, Jack?" and then went on, "but what about Jack the Ripper?" "Strange," replied Jack, raising his face from the paper, "that those crimes ceased as soon as I left London." I got thinking about this, and a day or two afterwards I said to him, "Jack, my God! I believe you were Jack the Ripper. I really believe you committed those crimes." He replied, "If I told you all it might be another case of Samson and Delilah, but if you told on me you would hurt yourself for you seem to be fond of me." He was one of those weak men who will tell women anything, and presently I had the whole tale from him. He had mutilated some women and girls in the street, and others he had lured to a room he occupied in the Whitechapel quarter. Their ages ranged from 48 to 14 years. I asked him what possessed him to commit such terrible apparently purposeless crimes, and he replied that it was partly out of revenge because a woman had jilted him in his youth and partly out of a liking for surgery.

"Killed Women in London."

"He seemed to be a little mad at times, and he wore a sheath knife with which, he said, he had killed the woman in London. This knife he pawned in King-street when we were in low water. It was a murderous instrument with a keen, slightly-curved blade. I was horror-struck at the revelations, but I liked the poor, weak fool, and you know perhaps how a woman will cling to a man as long as she believes he is true to her. But there came a night when Jack left me secretly, taking with him my money. He did not come back, and my love turned to hatred, and I was obsessed by a desire for revenge. So I went to Detective Dangey and another detective. We found out that Jack was leaving for the country, and he was detained at Spencer-street and taken to the detective office. They examined him there very keenly, but he allayed their suspcions, and told me how, for strange as it may seem, he came back to me. I was good-looking in those days, and possessed a singular fascination for him, for even when he got married the second time he wished to leave his bride and go away somewhere with me. He told me he got off because someone had declared that he had been employed at the Melbourne Exhibition in 1890. "But," Jack added, "They didn't know that I landed in Melbourne about the end of 1899, and was in London when the murders were committed. When Jack got married the second time he went to South Africa. I believe his wife has left him and gone on to England as companion to some lady. He told me once that when he is dying and is sure he will not recover he will call in a Church of England clergyman, and make a confession of the Whitechapel murders."
"I swear to Almighty God," concluded the woman, "that what I have told you is the truth. The once fashionable man who lived with me was Jack the Ripper, or an extraordinary liar. I believe he was the murderer."

Source: The Advertiser, Tuesday 26 July 1910, page 9

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