JACK THE RIPPER REVEALED
The world may finally know the real name of Jack the Ripper. A new book out recently called “Naming Jack The Ripper” claims to have uncovered the serial killer’s identity with the help of DNA analysis. The book asserts that Jack the Ripper was actually Aaron Kosminski, a Polish immigrant who came to London in the early 1880s and was later committed to an insane asylum.
Kosminski had long been on the short list of suspects for the string of five gruesome murders that took place in London in 1888, but the famous murder mystery had never been solved definitively. Russell Edwards, the sleuth who claims to have finally determined the murderer’s identity, is not a professional criminal investigator, but rather has a business background and a passion for London history. The key piece of evidence is a shawl with blood and semen stains.
“By 2007, I felt I had exhausted all avenues until I read a newspaper article about the sale of a shawl connected to the Ripper case,” Edwards wrote in an article for The Mail On Sunday. “Its owner, David Melville-Hayes, believed it had been in his family’s possession since the murder of Catherine Eddowes, when his ancestor, Acting Sergeant Amos Simpson, asked his superiors if he could take it home to give to his wife, a dressmaker. Incredibly, it was stowed without ever being washed, and was handed down…”
Edwards then turned to Jari Louhelainen, a molecular biology professor, who agreed to analyze DNA samples from the shawl and compared it to a DNA sample from a descendant of Kosminski’s sister.
“The first strand of DNA showed a 99.2 per cent match, as the analysis instrument could not determine the sequence of the missing 0.8 per cent fragment of DNA,” Louhelainen wrote in the Mail On Sunday article. “On testing the second strand, we achieved a perfect 100 per cent match.”
Mystery solved? It wouldn’t be the first time someone claimed such a feat. Just last year, popular crime writer Patricia Cornwell said she “cracked it” after more than a decade of research. The answer, according to Cornwell: Jack the Ripper was actually a British artist named Walter Sickert.
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