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'The police were to blame for not capturing Jack the Ripper' Use the sources and your own knowledge to explain whether you agree with this view.

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Introduction

Jack The Ripper Coursework- Question Five- 'The police were to blame for not capturing Jack the Ripper' Use the sources and your own knowledge to explain whether you agree with this view. In my opinion I disagree with this statement 'The police were to blame for not capturing Jack the Ripper. This is because we are dealing with a nineteenth century police force and not one of the twenty- first century. In modern times, forensic science deals with analysis of blood samples, DNA, ballistic, fibres, glass and pain, shoe and glove marks and many other scientific applications. The police force at the time of the Jack the Ripper investigations did not have the benefit of such sophisticated methods. Firstly we know much more about the victims than the police did at that time. Two, Mary Kelly and Francis Coles were attractive young women in their mid - twenties. The rest were middle- aged but few looked their years. It is interesting to note that police and press estimates of age, based on appearance were consistently misjudged by making them younger than they are known to have been. All the victims came from work-class parents, virtually all the women had slipped into destitution through failed marriage and drink. Drinking mainly was a reason why the police were not to blame for not capturing Jack the Ripper because when Elizabeth Long gave an inquest (in Source D) into the death of Annie Chapman she was not quite certain of many things as Source D mentions "...wearing a dark coat but I cannot be sure". ...read more.

Middle

Besides, it looks like an unsafe backyard because the fence is extremely low so anybody could without difficulty jump over the fence. It would have made it trouble-free for the murder to jump over the fence and the murderer would have also noticed if somebody was in the back yard alone. The Ripper's escapes from the scenes of his crimes are surprising but not inexplicable. This is because no one knew what he looked liked and this is proved because in the inquest of Elizabeth long, Source D it mentions "wearing a deerstalker hat..." which makes it difficult for someone to see what his face features are, therefore the police were not to blame for not capturing Jack the Ripper. And although he may well have been bloodstained there is no reason to depict him scuttling through the streets in clothes that were saturated with blood. In fact, his modus operandi suggests otherwise. We know that the Ripper severed the throats of his victims as Source C brings up, "...cutting the windpipe completely in two..." from the opposite side of the head to the first escape of arterial blood. It is probably, too, that the victims were first strangled. Whilst the murders where going on there were many "red-herrings" and several leads which came to nothing, so the police were not to blame for not capturing Jack the Ripper. However there has been a debate over several clues apparently left by the killer. One of the most famous was the chalk message it seems that it was left by the killer following the double murder. ...read more.

Conclusion

The Telegraph spoke at the time of a lack of imagination in the detective department, and a study of the Whitechapel crimes certainly does suggest a want of innovative spirit at the Yard. For detective not only failed to exploit fully the advantages of photography, the one important aid to detection then available, but they evinced no disposition, in the midst of the most important murder hunt of the century, to explore new methods of criminal investigation. In addition there was the absence of fingerprinting that the police are to blame for not capturing Jack the Ripper. There was also the general complaint of Warren's reforms with the police force. There were at the time many complaints of Warren's reforms within the force itself. At the time the central complaints of the radical and opposition press was that under Warren the police were being transformed from a civil into a military force primarily intended, not for the prevention and detection of crime, but for the policing of political rallies and demonstrations of the poor and unemployed. In conclusion the Whitechapel murderer, however, may not have been a professional villain and probably worked alone. With only one possible exception there no eye-witnesses to his attacks because they were committed at dead of night and in secluded locations. Indeed his victims, prostitutes all, accustomed to accosting men and taking them to dark or unfrequented byways and yards for sex, greatly facilitated his crimes. Most baffling of all to the Victorian detective, there was no obvious motive. Maisa Ahmad 10G History Coursework Jack the Ripper- Question 5 10/03/2004 ...read more.

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