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What were the reasons why the police could not catch the killer known as Jack the Ripper.

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Question Three There were many reasons why the police could not catch the killer known as Jack the Ripper. First, they were not an advanced force. They did not know to preserve the scene of the murder, as they thought that if they left it, it would attract the public's attention. At first they didn't know that this murderer was a serial killer (Even if they had done, they didn't know what this was) and not just one or two murders. It was assumed that the murder of Polly Nichols had been committed by a man who was local, and after the previous attack on Emma Smith, and the murder of Martha Tabram, it was believed that they were all linked by the fact that they were prostitutes. There were many other reasons, such as red herrings, which wasted the police's time. An example of this was 'Leather Apron', a Jewish man who had been suspected of the murder, as he wore a leather apron, had a 'sinister expression' and had a previous conviction for stabbing. ...read more.


Patrol numbers in the area of Whitechapel were increased, so that more officers were watching the streets at the same time, and there was less possibility that another murder would be committed. This showed that the murders on the 30th of September were very quick. After these murders, patrol increased further, with some officers dressing up as prostitutes to try to lure the killer into a trap. (All of the officers in the force were male, as women were not allowed in the police at the time.) This did not help, so they had to try something different. The police interviewed people who were staying in lodging houses in Whitechapel, including slaughterers and butchers, even though it had been decided that they were not suspects. Sailors were interviewed, bloodhounds were used but all of these were also failed attempts. The police were desperate, so they issued handbills to over 80,000 houses. They did not want to, or they couldn't give a description of the killer, they still thought that the murderer lived in the area, and they were still appealing for evidence. ...read more.


The public were panicking, and this led to them wanting the police to catch this person as soon as they could, which led to violence amongst them. What makes these killings even stranger is that 90% of murders are committed by somebody that knows the victim, but, as all of the killings seemed to be random, all of these victims were thought to be total strangers that the killer just happened to meet and decided to murder. He killed these women in cold blood, without any signs of remorse or regret, so naturally he was thought to be a sexual psychopath. Queen Victoria became concerned with this situation. She told the Prime Minister that action had to be taken; detective work had to be improved if they were going to catch the killer as soon as possible. She has said what was being felt by the public. The police were not doing enough to catch this murderer. The Times stated that the murderer was clever; he worked quickly, did not leave any clues behind at the scene and that the police should hope that they would get some information that would help them reach a final conclusion. Emma Bowall 10.4 History Coursework ...read more.

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