A 2014 news report claims that Jack the Ripper was actually a local meat cart driver. This suspect was put forward by criminologist, Dr Gareth Norris, who says that his profession would have allowed him to wander the streets of the East End without drawing attention or suspicion. Dr Norris also claimed that the route Charles Allen Lechmere took to work ‘coincidently’ matched the locations of where the Ripper victims were found.
Lechmere is just one of many, many suspects. There is a full list of individuals who appear to fit the bill, so what makes this theory stand out?
Well, according to records, Lechmere was caught hovering around Mary Ann Nichols’ corpse. However, he protested to the police force that he had only been at the scene for a few moments. It was later revealed that he had provided false information regarding his name, formerly saying it was Cross. The Daily Mail also stated that it was possible Lechmere had been around the body for approximately nine minutes.
It is also noted that this mysterious figure was lingering around Hanbury and Dorset Street, as well as Mitre Square at the time the murders occurred.
Dr Norris mentioned: “Lechmere would certainly be a person of interest and, while the evidence against him is circumstantial, he would have a case to answer.”
“There couldn’t feasibly be a re-opening of the case as the Ripper is most certainly deceased by now, but periodically, reviews of historical cases can be sanctioned.”
“Again, there are no living witnesses or forensics of any sort so the basis of any investigation would be slightly flawed. Lechmere could be a match for the profile – along with many others – but whether he fits the conspiracy element that fascinates the public is another matter.”
Another intriguing piece of ‘evidence’ that could go against Lechmere is his role as a meat cart driver. This would mean he would almost constantly be drenched in blood, something that could be the reason he slipped under the radar.
TV Producer, David McNab, said: “Lechmere was discovered standing over the body, but bizarrely no-one seemed to think that was important.”
Lechmere’s mother was also rumoured to be a “pivotal figure” for Lechmere, and it was said that he previously lived quite close to her.
On the contrary, it was also revealed that two months prior to the beginning of the murders; he relocated whilst his mother and daughter stayed at the same address.
Dr Norris commented on this and said: “A big upheaval in the family just months before the killings could be of some significance.”
James Scobie QC, a Barrister, is convinced that the ‘evidence’ against Lechmere “could have warranted a court case.”
He commented: “He is somebody who seems to be acting in a way that is suspicious, which a jury would not like.”
“When the coincidences mount up against a defendant, it becomes one coincidence too many.”
According to records, Lechmere was said to have passed away in 1920.
Do you believe Lechmere could have been Jack the Ripper? Why not join us on one of our Jack the Ripper walks and share your views on this mysterious suspect!