44-D’s True Crime: Discovery Channel’s Jack the Ripper in America

TrueCrime-490X136

Reviewed by Audiegrl

The greatest serial killer in history has never been named. But what if we are looking in the wrong place?


In 1888, a deranged killer stalked his prey on the streets of east London at night. After 121 years since the murder and mutilation of at least five prostitutes, the case remains unsolved and the true identity of Jack the Ripper has never been known. The world’s greatest criminal investigators have focused on searching for answers in London. However, in the 1890s a series of horrific murders took place across the United States in New York, San Francisco, Galveston and Atlanta, that mirrored the attacks in attacks in the UK. In this one hour special, Discovery Channel’s viewers will witness the new evidence, science and analytical techniques being used to reveal the true identity of Jack the Ripper.

NYPD Cold Case Detective Ed Norris

The Discovery Channel’s documentary, Jack the Ripper in America focuses on Detective Ed Norris, former head of the NYPD Cold Case Unit, who investigates and uncovers new evidence not seen since the time of the murders. In trying to solve the 118 year old murder of New York prostitute Carrie Brown, he begins to note the similarities between her murder and the famous Whitechapel murders in London. Brown’s murderer had a three-stage MO (strangled, penetrating wound, pulled apart) Because of the unusual and gruesome nature of the crime, the press of the day, immediately began asking the question, “Is Jack the Ripper in New York“. Norris sees the same unusual ‘signature‘ in both the London and New York killers. They both kill prostitutes by strangling, cutting the throat, and eviscerating the body. For Norris this indicates that he might be looking at the same killer.

Carrie Brown aka Old Shakespeare

Carrie Brown aka Old Shakespeare

The key in all cold cases is finding the clues missed by the original investigators. Although, Brown was murdered on April 23, 1891, Norris decides to let a new set of eyes look at the evidence. Enter Dr. Jonathan Hayes, the Manhattan Senior Medical Examiner. Dr. Hayes combs through the autopsy report of Carry Brown. He reaches some interesting conclusions, including a special marking on the body, which I won’t reveal here, you’ll have to watch the show. On August 7th, 1891, another unidentified prostitute is murdered with the same MO as Brown, and pulled from the East river. Visiting the New York Municipal Archives, Norris finds that the old newspapers of that time, reveal another shocking detail. The killer actually wrote to the NYPD, before the murder of Carry Brown. His letter is recreated below:

Capt. Ryan,

You think that “Jack the Ripper” is in England, but he is not, I am right here and I expect to kill somebody by Thursday next, and so get ready for me with your pistols, but I have a knife that has done more than your pistols. Next thing you will hear of some woman dead.

Yours truly,

Jack the Ripper

Richard Jones

Detective Norris wants to get into Jack’s head, and walk in his foot steps. He feels that he was an organized killer that took advantage of the conditions of the time: no ambient street lighting, a black curtain of smoke over the city caused by burning low quality coal, and counting on his victims to naturally take him to the dark, secluded places used in the prostitution trade. Norris takes viewers through a summary of the Ripper murders by using re-enactments and walking through the crime scenes. Next, Norris consults London historian Richard Jones, owner of Ripper Walking Tours and author of Uncovering Jack the Ripper’s London. Jones has spent more than two decades investigating the Whitechapel murders. He asks Jones if any of the serious Ripper suspects had ever traveled to the United States after the death of Mary Kelly. Jones provided him with three names: Severin Klosowski, Francis Tumblety, and James Kelly.

Known as the From Hell or Lusk Letter

Norris then consults with Sheila Kurtz, a Forensic Hand Writing Analyst, Master Graphologist and President of Graphology Consulting Group. Kurtz had successfully worked on the Son of Sam case among many others. After reviewing samples of the Ripper’s hand writing, Kurtz identified the writer as a very disturbed individual, who she said, “I wouldn’t want to be in his company“. For additional details on her analysis please visit her blog. The graphic to the left shows the letter was purportedly written in 1888 by Jack the Ripper.

Dr Thomas Bond

Dr. Thomas Bond

Norris then paid a visit to Britain’s National Archives. The archives hold thousands of original documents in the Ripper case. There, Norris discovers a document not previously used in the investigation. A profile of the killer. Sir Robert Anderson, the head of the police Criminal Investigation Departments, asked Dr Thomas Bond, Britain’s top police surgeon in 1888 to examine material connected with the Whitechapel murder investigation. Bond wrote a 19th-century version of a modern day unsub profile, based on personally examining the body of Mary Kelly and reading the autopsy reports on the first four victims. In the report, he describes in detail the type of person they should be investigating. Dr. Bond was sure that all five women had been killed by the same hand, because the throats of all victims had been cut in a similar way and the victims were presumably lying down when murdered. (for additional details on Dr. Bond’s profile, click here to read the report) Norris ultimately uses this 121 year old profile to narrow the three suspects down to one name. James Kelly. In the world of police parlance, Norris says that “Kelly looks good“.

Jack the Ripper victims: Polly Nichols, Annie Chapman, Elizabeth Stride, Catharine Eddowes, Mary Kelly

In 1883, James Kelly only one month married, argues with his wife and accuses her of being unfaithful. In a psychotic rage, he uses the methods of strangulation and throat slashing to kill her. Kelly is caught, convicted and sentenced to die by hanging. Then his employer comes forward and explains that he believes Kelly is mentally disturbed. Kelly was then examined by a alienist and committed to the Broadmoor Criminal Lunatic Asylum. Kelly’s psychiatric report has been sealed for over 125 years, until Norris examines it.

Broadmoor Old Gate

Broadmoor Criminal Lunatic Asylum

In 1863, Broadmoor was the first custom-built asylum to house criminal lunatics. In Broadmoor, Kelly is a outwardly a model prisoner, but at the same time he is secretly planning his escape. Working in the asylum’s carpentry shop, he cunningly uses a piece of medal he carved into a key to aid his escape. In January of 1888, Kelly escaped and just disappeared. At that time a series of stabbings and slashing attacks of women start in London. Three victims: Annie Millwood, (February 25, 1888, stabbed repeatedly, but survived), Ada Wilson, (March 28, 1888, slashed in the throat, but survived), and Martha Tabram, (August 7, 1888, stabbed 23 times, did not survive). Norris feels these are the early attempts of Jack the Ripper, who like many serial killers, escalates and only gets more brutal over time. After these three attacks, the first London Ripper murder occurs. Surprisingly, Kelly was once considered a suspect by London police, but after only minimal checking at his old residence, they simply gave up, and were never able to find him. With the huge amount of pressure they were under, the case against Kelly went cold…

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Astonishingly, in 1927…forty years later, a much older Kelly voluntarily returns to the insane asylum and began to chronicle his travels. A typed copy of Kelly’s confession letter survives in the National Archives, and Norris is the first detective to read it. In the letter, Kelly describes having “problems dealing with society“, and being “overtaken with feelings of envy, jealousy, and malice“. Kelly states, “the thing has been hard because of all kinds of ‘skank’” (a term he uses to refers to women of low moral character) and “I’ve been on the warpath since I left Broadmoor Asylum.” Also in his letter, he admits to traveling to London after his escape, and more interestingly he tells of traveling to the United States and arriving in New York conveniently before the Carrie Brown murder. He was by profession, a trained upholsterer, and would have known quiet a bit about knives and how to use them effectively for the purpose of murder. Kelly also mentioned traveling to many cities in the US before returning to England and admitted that he came to the US many times over a period of 40 years.

USS Zaandam

First Norris wanted to check to make sure that Kelly’s confession matched up with actual travel records of the day. In Britain’s National Maritime Museum, they kept track of every ship that came to the United States. Kelly said he traveled to America aboard an Anglo-German steamer named the Zaandam that sailed from Rotterdam to New York. At the museum, Norris not only confirmed the ship existed, but that it sailed from Rotterdam to New York on October 7, 1890—two years after the last Ripper murder in London (11/88) and months before the April 23, 1891 murder of Carrie Brown in New York. You might be thinking, “How does a ‘wanted man’ get into the United States without detection?” Professor Dan Citrum is an expert in 19th-century immigration and explains how easily it could have been done. Remember this was before Ellis Island was established, so getting in and out of the country was very easy. No drivers licenses, no passports, and no photo id whatsoever. Many people back then, came to this country to start over, and remake themselves and get lost in the huge crowds of New York city. In his confession, Kelly admits to changing his name once his ship arrives to ‘John Miller‘, one of the most common names both then and now. Kelly used his new name like a disguise to blend in and escape police scrutiny.

Knowing from experience that many serial killers travel extensively, to avoid detection, Detective Norris plots the cities Kelly claims to have visited against the murders written about in the newspapers. He begins to see similarities in Ripper-like murders committed in other cities: New York NY, Trenton, NJ, Galveston, TX, New Orleans, LA, Philadelphia, PA, Baltimore, MD, Jackson, CA, San Francisco, CA, Denver, CO. Each of these murders occurred during the time that Kelly, thorough his confession letter, said he was in that city. Even the city newspapers asked the same question “Is this the work of Jack the Ripper” and “Is this the fiend of Whitechapel?” and “Has Jack the Ripper Invaded Texas at Last“. Detective Norris identified twelve murders across five states in just four years…and remember, Kelly was gone for forty years…you can do the math. To read an amazing collection of news reports, please visit Casebook: Jack the Ripper.

Using a asylum photo of Kelly provided by the National Archives, he was able to see what Kelly looked like at age 67. Norris then contacted Steve Mancusi, a NYPD senior forensic artist who has helped solve the most difficult cases for the last 30 years. He wanted Mancusi to use forensic imaging technology normally used for age-progression in missing child cases, but with this case, he wanted him to reverse the effects of aging, to show what Kelly would have looked like in his 30’s. The striking illustration below on the right is based on their findings.

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Both illustrations of Jack the Ripper

The left composite, was drawn based on 118 year old eye-witness accounts of Jack the Ripper in London. They examined different witness statements and used modern day forensics to come up with a portrait of the killer, even indicating what type of hat he wore.

The drawing on the right, is the result of Mancusi shaving 40 years off of James Kelly’s photo at age 67. As you can see, once they added the type of hat mentioned by eye witnesses, the drawings are a very close match.

In the end, there is no doubt in Norris’ mind that he has found Jack the Ripper. We may never know. John Kelly died of natural causes in 1929 inside Broadmoor Asylum and took his secrets to his grave. In my opinion, Jack the Ripper in America was very well done and is a must-see for all forensic buffs and amateur Ripperologists. I’m interested in seeing further research, analysis and discussion of Norris’ theory. Regarding any factual errors in this post, I apologize in advance, and encourage everyone to let me know what needs to be corrected.

Time After Time

On a lighter note, anybody remember the movie “Time After Time” starring Malcolm McDowell, John Warner and Mary Steenburgen? McDowell played H.G. Wells, who uses his time machine to chase his friend, Warner (aka Jack the Ripper) through the streets of modern day (1979) San Francisco. After watching Norris’ documentary, maybe Hollywood’s silly (but entertaining) version of the Ripper story had a sliver of truth to it after all. 😉

The Secret of Prisoner 1167: Was This Man Jack the Ripper? by James Tully


Hat tip and special thanks to Roy Corduroy for his suggestion to add this book to this post. Casebook: Jack the Ripper gives this book a three-starred review:

A triumphant achievement on the part of Jim Tully, well-researched and written. James Kelly is his suspect, a lunatic upholsterer and wife-murderer who is actually in the Guinness book of world records for his escape from Broadmoor asylum. Tully weaves a fascinating story, regardless of your feelings on Kelly as a suspect. Recommended.

Related Articles and Sites

Casebook: Jack the Ripper

Maps of Whitechapel, 1888-1894

Ripperological Preservation Society

Jack the Ripper Tours

Serial Killer Database – Jack the Ripper

The Whitechapel Society

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57 Comments

Filed under California, Computers, Crime, Documentary, England, Forensics, Georgia, History, Law, New Jeresy, New York, News, Pennsylvania, Police, Technology, Texas, True Crime, Uncategorized, Violence, World

57 responses to “44-D’s True Crime: Discovery Channel’s Jack the Ripper in America

  1. JPGARC

    Nice job, very well done!

    About a week earlier MysteryQuest did a show on Jack the Ripper where they examined three possible suspects; none of which was James Kelly. In that examination, “they” concluded that the Ripper was in fact Francis Tumblety.

    What a great debate that would make to get them both together to discuss all their facts and findings in one show.

    • audiegrl

      Thank you JP, my husband thought I was crazy. 😉 I kept pausing the show, and running to my computer to make notes. LOL

      It was very interesting, and hopefully will foster more investigation and debate. There are so many theories out there, I hope one day someone will finally solve it.

      My only problem with the show was that it was too short. They could have used the second hour dedicated to examining the travels of Kelly and trying to find more American cases that could be tied to him. That would have been a great addition. They only got to cover 12 deaths, in 5 states during 4 years. I kept thinking (if my math is correct), if he kept that pace up, it would be over a thousand deaths during his 40 years of trolling. That’s pretty scary.

      Thank you for taking a look at my summary of the show, you guys at Casebook are the experts, so I appreciate the feed back. 🙂

    • Augie

      Great show!!! I believe this was the best investigating I have seen on the case. I found the show interesting and the investigating supporting James Tully “Prisoner 1167”. I noticed the “X” on Carrie Brown’s body could possibly explained by Tully’s book (pg-2) where James mother use the mark instead of using her name. Also, the use of John Miller was actually his real father’s name, which was used by James to get into the United States.

    • if James kellys original handwritten confession letter has survived it could be compared against the dear boss letter to see if it was the same person
      who has written it…..so we would know then if james kelly was or wasn’t
      jtr.

  2. JVerdelet

    Excellent recapitulation of the show!

    I remember that film too. Also, Murder By Decree came out around that time as well I think.

    • audiegrl

      Thank you JV, I really appreciate you looking at it.

      Murder by Decree was a good one. 😉

      I remember Donald Sutherland with those crazy mutton chops. LOL

  3. Excellent article, AG! Very insightful look into how cold case detectives can use today’s technological advances to solve old cases.

    There have been numerous conspiracy theories over the years, and I commend the experts involved in the cold case investigation for not allowing their preconceived notions to cloud their judgment. James Kelly seems like a viable suspect. It would be awesome if we would some day have a conclusion to this horrific part of history.

    • audiegrl

      Thanks for checking it out BD

      I hope we find out the name of Jack the Ripper soon, its been over a hundred years now, and I’m not getting any younger. 😉

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  5. buellboy

    Amazing research AG. I learned more from your write up than pretty much all the Ripper lore out there over the years. Kudos!

  6. JTR is something of a cottage industry in London, so I was thrilled to watch a re-run of “JTR in America” tonight. I didn’t catch any mis-steps in his investigation, and his reasoning was sound and logical as he followed the leads, much more so than the theories that JTR was a member of the British royal family.

    I too dismissed “Time After Time” as Hollywood’s fantasy, but recently read somewhere that JTR was believed to be responsible for the same type of murders in Texas in the right timeframe, so why not San Francisco?

    Ed Norris’s investigation verified James Kelly was in both places, as well as every other American city where prostitutes were murdered in a simlar fashion. Far as I’m concerned, no doubt in my mind now that James Kelly was “Jack the Ripper”.

    • audiegrl

      Welcome Joanna!

      Thanks for checking this out. It was a thought-provoking show, and will probably encourage a lot of debate. If I ever get the chance to come to London again, you can bet I’ll be taking the JTR tour. Last time we didn’t have enough time. 🙂

  7. Anonymous

    Unfortunately, I only caught the end of the show. Does anyone know when it will air next? Thanks.

  8. frank

    what a show when will it be on again or is a dvd available

  9. Loved TIME AFTER TIME and you’re right… There was a sliver of truth to it. Great post!

  10. audiegrl

    Guess what I got for Christmas from my sister? 🙂

    Jack the Ripper: The Casebook by Richard Jones

    Description
    Investigate one of the most compelling killers of all time. Jack the Ripper: The Casebook takes readers on a tour of Victorian London’s underworld where the slayings took place, from street corner taverns to unsavory lodging houses. One by one the murder victims are revealed, the circumstances of their killings investigated, and the suspects analyzed. What amateur sleuths will find most fascinating here are the many facsimiles of contemporary documents, including letters allegedly sent by Jack the Ripper to police and elsewhere, police reports, press articles, and personal correspondence. These facsimiles provide readers with access to all the available information so they, too, can try to unravel this century-old mystery.

    About the Author
    Richard Jones is an internationally renowned Jack the Ripper expert, and head guide on the widely acclaimed Jack the Ripper Walks. He has written 16 books, many of which have been published worldwide, and makes frequent television appearances.

  11. StickAmericaupyourarse

    The septic tanks had to take ownership as usual. Exactly like the Titanic, Lord of The Rings, etc, etc.

    This century we were hoping you might have an idea of your own before your greed sends you to self destruction.

    Note from Management: Dude, chill. 😉

  12. Anonymous

    Thanks this really helped for a project Im doing

  13. emily

    Love browsing this page, I usually find out something interesting facts.
    Emily Randall

  14. Just watched “Jack The Ripper” on discovery channel last night. Made me searching for more and stumbled upon your blog.

    Finally, we have a name and a face for Jack The Ripper.

    But it still remains pretty much a myth, right?

  15. Pingback: James Kelly Jack The Ripper | 44-D’s True Crime: Discovery Channel’s Jack the Ripper in America | TechLad : Tech News from around the world

  16. From Hell

    Convicted corrupt ex-cop makes crap programme and gets most of the facts wrong!

    This theory about James Kelly has been around a long time and the fact that Norris did not even acknowledge James Tully’s contribution says a lot about Norris.

    The made-up ‘composite’ sketch (which matches no known description of a Ripper suspect) and reverse-aged photo comparison was absolute baloney. As was the risible attempts to link so-called ‘Ripper’ killings in the US with James Kelly’s alleged perambulations around the States for which, by the way, there is absolutely no corroborative evidence.

    The Broadmoor file that Norris referred to is actually in the public domain, I believe.

    In summation, the programme was absolute rubbish accept in one matter, and that was in its proposing of James Kelly as a viable suspect in the Whitechapel Murders alone.

    • Will Tully

      My late Father JCH Tully published “prisoner 1167” identifying James Kelly as Jack the Ripper in 1997. The production company asked our family to go through his papers for evidence of what Kelly did in the US. They have plagiarised my father’s book without permission. There has been no acknowledgment (not even a credit). Norris is a TV stooge handed a script by a poor quality TV company. They hope to make money by inventing a US connection “discovered’ by one their own. Trash.

      • Christopher Scott

        Will. I am truly sorry to hear about your late father passing. I had no idea. I recently read his book, and found it fascinating. I agree that the show ripped (sorry, there’s that word again) off your Dad’s research, specifically having to do with his travels to America. I think the earlier blog that we Americans are trying to take Jack as our own is rather stupid, especially considering that the London Police actually believed the suspect to be a foreigner. You will recall the “American with the Slouched Hat.” While Norris pretended that your Dad’s discoveries were his own, which I think is reprehensible, and the police sketch rather compromised and bogus, a couple of important things did come out in the show. One of the weaknesses in your Dad’s book is that he did not explore the tools that upholsterers use beyond the ripping tool. The show demonstrated how an upholsterer cuts, and I think it was very illuminating. I also think there was some value in reverse aging the photo of James Kelly as an old man, although I think they got the eyes wrong, because it does bare a resemblance to the image of Kelly at the time he was admitted to Broadmoor. My question is, why didn’t Norris show that photo? I thought it rather odd. Also, your Dad said that the police file was sealed. Is that still the case? Your father had quite a lot of convincing to do to get the Broadmoor folks to even allow him access to Kelly’s file. I wonder why it was so easy for Norris. Finally, it doesn’t seem that the purist snobs on Casebook really want to discuss new evidence except to wrangle within their own clique about the Ripper. If you read the article on Tumblety, you’ll see a police sketch of the Ripper suspect. And who do you think it looks like? Not Tumblety. It looks like JAMES KELLY.

      • Will, please except our condolences on your fathers death. When originally posting this back in November 2009, I added a section recommending your fathers book, so people could find out more on his research. Hopefully, people who find this story interesting, will also take the time to check out The Secret of Patient 1167.

      • Tom Turner

        Dear Will,

        I too am sad to hear that your father has passed away.

        I saw the Discovery Channel documentary a few weeks ago, which immediately prompted me to do a bit more research into the story and look past the veneer of the US presenter Ed Norris. This is how I came upon your father’s book. I’m still reading it now and what a fascinating and well-written book it is. I’m sorry the book has been plagiarised without so much as a proper credit.

        It is interesting that the police case was so bungled. Also, is it usual for case files such as Kelly’s to be officially bound in secrecy for 100 years? It would be good if there was an official follow-up to the book when further case files are released in future.

        • Christopher Scott

          If Kelly’s file is the only file sealed in this case, and for such an unreasonably protracted period of time (longer than the file on JFK’s assassination!) then it begs the question, whatever for? Certainly not to keep the Jack the Ripper tourist trade (and museum no less) turning a profit! Is it because the information might be potentially embarassing to someone very high up? Embarass the police (who are already fairly embarassed, I should say)? Also, why can’t modern forensics be employed here to help solve the case? It is a pity that the corpses of the victims were washed before their autopsies took place. But couldn’t court orders be obtained to have some of the bodies of the victims exhumed? Perhaps not all of the evidence was washed away. Surely some obsessed American could be found to fund such a project (I’m an American, so I can Yankee bash without any repercussions). DNA could be taken from a suspect’s descendants (many I’m sure would love to claim Jack as their own). All it takes is an eyelash or a stray hair or a spot of blood from the killer and checked against family DNA. Wouldn’t the DNA still be viable in such artifacts, even after all this time? Also, one of the things I never understood is why, in JCH Tully’s book, there was never any comparison done of Kelly’s handwriting to the supposed Ripper letters. The letters may have been bogus, but maybe not. The Ripper clearly enjoyed making fools of the police. Kelly claims in his memoirs that he went to America numerous times. A New York City homicide detective in charge of the Ripper style murders there, who had once mocked the London police for their ineptitude, received a strikingly similar letter after one particularly gruesome murder…again a prostitute. Do you get the feeling that no one is really serious about taking concrete forensic steps to solve this murder? Or would it ruin everyone’s fun? Finally, the more factors you introduce into a case the harder it is to see the simple truth. The nickname for John or James is Jack or Jim. Jim the Ripper sounds rather lame. Kelly’s Christian name was James. He used a ripping tool…hence Jack the Ripper. Could it be that easy?

  17. DanaeChantel

    I never saw the Discovery Channel documentary. I will have to agree with Christopher Scott on this one as to why the bodies of the victims couldn’t be exhumed. I don’t know that anyone knows for sure where all the bodies are buried. Some of the headstones have been moved. Also, After 126 years, I don’t know for sure if there would be anything left of the corpses to do DNA on. It would be interesting if anyone could find any of the descendants of Jack the Ripper. How creepy to find out that one of your descendants was a brutal and psychotic killer. They say insanity runs in familes. Scary stuff this, but maybe no one wants to know the truth as that would take all the fun and excitment out of it. Who knows, maybe it was NONE of the people who are profiled but some anonymous individual.

  18. g kelly

    Does anyone know how to reach Ed Norris

  19. On my blog “Murder by Gaslight” I have recently posted an analysis of the Carrie Brown murder, trying to look at the case iteslf, without all the Jack the Ripper hoopla: http://murderbygasslight.blogspot.com/2010/05/carrie-brown-jack-ripper-in-america.html

    I have also included several “Jack the Ripper in America” theories. Its interesting to note that among Ripperologists who beleive that the Ripper killed Carrie Brown (and not all do), James Kelly is not considered a likely suspect.

    IMHO, Ed Norris used shoddy police work to retrofit the facts to his theory.

  20. Dkrash

    I saw the show a couple days ago and I have not followed much of the history. With all the assumptions that were made about Mr Kelly one point was never talked about or examined (at least not on the documentary). When Mr Norris had the “Lusk Letter” analysed why wasn’t Mr Kelly’s final letter’s compared? It struck me odd that with all the detail that went into trying to narrow things that it wasn’t done.

    • RWinstel

      I completely agree that the letters from Jack the Ripper should have been compared to the letters of Kelly at Broodmoor when he returned before his death.

  21. IVAN

    good!!! I saw the show and its amazing.. good lines… congrats.. I think finally we know who was Jack…

    • Irene

      Hello.
      I have just watched the show on New Zealand TV and one point screams out. I can’t help wondering why the handwriting on the English Ripper letter/s was never compared the the American letter (From Hell). If anything, this would establish that the same person committed the murders in England and US.
      Thanks.

    • Irene

      Hello.
      Sorry for the repeat comment. My email address was not entered on the first.
      I have just watched the show on New Zealand TV and one point screams out. I can’t help wondering why the handwriting on the English Ripper letter/s was never compared the the American letter (From Hell). If anything, this would establish that the same person committed the murders in England and US.
      Thanks.

  22. Lisa O;Shea

    I have a problem with this latest story. Iam sorry to say this about the English but, once you were convicted of a crime and headed for the gallows they didn’t give a toss that you were his previous employerwith refrence. No you had to be someone pretty important to let you off and get put in the nuthouse labed with a number and your documents sealed with the reason why! I cannot stand those whose only purpose is to make another buck off of those who suffered. Kelly whoo by the way is INSANE cleverly escapes from his institution with no MONEY,no SHOES, no OVERCOAT and he DOESN’T KILL ANYMORE WOMEN for 2 years to wait for a ship to take him to NEW YORK, someting every psychiatrist will tell you is impossible that serial killers cannot stop killing to wait around for a ship!! The fantastical tale of Kelly going to all these cities all over the Unied States is just that because he leaves out the fact that Kelly is a forigner even if he could find work, lodging would be a whole other matter because nobody liked forigners after the civil war. The moment Kelly opened his mouth eyes were on him like gnats and then there is the issue of how did He get to Galveston,TX. or Santa Rose, CA when train tracks were barely laid. My absolute favorite part of this tale is that after riding wild and free for forty years is He goes back to golly old England and to Broadmoore, that is the only part in this tale that would make him crazy! We have our own faceless killer obssession with the BLACK DAHLIA CASE sometimes there are things that happen that are better off left to rest!!!!!!!!

  23. Pingback: Jack the Ripper (1988) | Old Old Films

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  25. Gary Thomas

    I have seen this “Ripper in America?” show and was impressed with the findings. I have been looking into Carrie Brown ever since discovering she was buried in my family plot in Salem, MA. (I belive she was married to my great-great-great-grandfather’s nephew, Charles E. Brown, a Danish immigrant). Carrie had two children who lived to adulthood and married but I can find no further generations. These children were actually raised by my great-great-great-grandmother as Charles E. Brown was a sea captain but Brown died in 1872 while on a voyage to Zanzibar. a fascinating story but I do wish it had an ending.

  26. sara

    I just watched Ripper in America and totally agree with everyone else about the handwriting. But maybe they did think of that, checked it, and discovered it was nothing like the From Hell letter.Why would they show evidence that disproves their theory?

    Anyway, I don’t really get why he’s so notorious. He only committed five murders! Sure they never caught him, but they don’t catch other, more terrible criminals either!
    Also, say a prayer for those who die in horror and pain like his victims did, please.

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  28. keith harding

    MY DAD WORKED WITH KELLY IN ALMA RD UPHOLSTERY MY DAD WAS VERY YOUNG(11 OR 12 HIS SCHOOL BURNED DOWN SO TRAINED AS AN UPHOLSTERER) IN BOURNEMOUTH
    (KELLY IF IT WAS HIM) WAS ONLY THERE A SHORT TIME BUT HE WAS A LEATHER SKINNER AND UPHOLSTERER
    HE TOOK GREAT PRIDE IN HIS KNIFES… NO ONE LIKED HIM AND HE WAS A VERY NASTY CHARACTER IF HE LOOKED AT YOU YOU DIDNT LOOK BACK FOR LONG AND GOT AWAY FROM HIM QUICK
    HE HAD THE MOST HORRIBLE EMPTY EYES HE COULD STILL PICTURE HIM 80 YRS LATER

    MY DAD TOLD ME OF THIS GUY … AND SCARED THE PANTS OFF ME HAHA
    BUT HE HAD NO IDEA THIS HORRIBLE BLOKE MAY HAVE BEEN JACK THE RIPPER
    THIS IS SOMETHING ED NORRIS FOUND OUT ABOUT ….THE LEATHER SKINNING AND BEING IN BOURNEMOUTH(FOR A SHORT TIME)
    HE HAD A NASTY ATTITUDE TO WOMEN AND A VIOLENT TEMPER AS WELL MRS WETHERALL SACKED HIM FOR A COMMENT HE MADE TO HER ( SHE BEING THE OWNER) BUT HE COULD SKIN A PIECE OF LEATHER INTO 3 HIDES PRACTICALLY UNHEARD OF THEN

  29. Anonymous

    Was Kelly the Ripper? Maybe, but I do not think he killed Carrie Brown. Brown was strangled, The Ripper murdered his victims by cutting their throats. The show stressed the importance of modis operi and a murderers signature, however, failed to notice the one thing consistent with every London murder, Nichols, Chapman, Stride, Edowes, and Kelly all the had their throats slit!

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  31. Anonymous

    That is wild on so many levels.. You have no idea. I recently foudn some very interesting things in the Zodiac killer Ciphers.. I think I solved it , but we will see. When I saw the name of this suspect my jaw hit the floor. Check out my work on the Zodiac ciphers. This is a serious attempt . http://340cipherhalloweencardconnection.blogspot.com/2014/04/the-dots-dicethe-halloween-card-v.html

  32. Anonymous

    i didn’t mean for it to post anonymous. I thought i linked to google plus.. Randall

  33. Erick

    Jack the ripper is one of the most famous left handed man, the only man left handed at that time was John Dueitt, who failed as a doctor and a school teacher, killing himself in a river shortly after the last murder.
    He is the most obvious person in this case to be jack the ripper.
    John being a failed doctor makes him very knowledgeable on the human anatomy and being well written in his dear boss letters.
    Have they proved a left handed man wrote the letters?

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