The Top Ten Jack the Ripper Suspects

DATED: 09.04.19

It's been 130 years since the world’s most infamous serial killer stalked the streets of Victorian London, leaving a ghastly trail of murder and mayhem in his wake.
In 1888, the killer known as Jack the Ripper murdered and mutilated between 5 and 7 women in and around the impoverished area of Whitechapel, in London’s East End.  Then, no sooner had he carved his name into the history books, but he was gone, with only his gruesome legacy remaining to capture the public imagination.
Even today, nobody knows the real identity of Jack the Ripper for certain. However, modern researchers have now started using criminal profiling in a bid to better understand this elusive killer.
Our expert Ripperologists have analysed the facts and painstakingly researched the case in great detail, allowing us to compile a list of the top ten suspects that we believe were most likely to have been Jack the Ripper. So, who makes it onto our top ten?

1. Albert Bachert 

Albert Bachert was a resident of the Whitechapel area and a man who injected himself into the murder enquiry. His mannerisms and characteristics aroused much suspicion and made him a person of interest in the case. It has since been suggested that his background and actions are similar to the profile of some serial killers...

2. Joseph Barnett 

The only suspect with a direct link to one of the Ripper victims, Joseph Barnett was the one-time lover of Mary Jane Kelly and therefore, he knew the area very well. His appearance matched some eyewitness descriptions and some of his characteristics also match the profile that was put forward by the FBI in the 1980s as the type of person the Ripper would have been.

3. William Bury 

William Bury was a resident of the East End during the Canonical Five murders and a proven killer whose later crimes bore a striking similarity to the Whitechapel murders. He was hanged for the murder of his wife in 1889 and remains the last man to be hanged in the city of Dundee, in Scotland.

4. David Cohen 

A Polish Jew, living in Whitechapel, who had homicidal tendencies and was confined to a lunatic asylum shortly after the last of the Canonical Five murders. Did the Ripper's murderous spree end because Cohen was no longer free to stalk the streets of the East End?

5. Montague John Druitt

A teacher and barrister, and most surprisingly, a man of a good family, Montague John Druitt disappeared within weeks of the last murder. His lifeless body was found floating in the Thames about seven weeks after the murder of the last victim.

6. George Hutchinson 

George Hutchinson's first appearance was after the inquest of Mary Kelly when he went to the police with a statement about meeting the victim on the morning of her death. It was the very detailed nature of this statement which led later researchers to look at him more closely, and he was first named as the killer in 1998.

7. Aaron Kosminski 

Aaron Kosminski was a low-classed polish Jew and resident of Whitechapel. There is great debate regarding this individual and some senior police sources suggest that he may have been positively identified as the killer. There are also many circumstances connected with this man that make him a strong 'suspect'.

8. Charles Lechmere (Cross) 

This man was originally brought to the attention of the police as a witness who claimed to have discovered the body of the woman murdered in Bucks Row. There is evidence to suggest that this man not only lied about his true identity but may also have lied about whether he discovered the body. His time alone with the victim also raises much suspicion.

9. Robert Mann 

Robert Mann was a Whitechapel Mortuary attendant. His workplace, located in the heart of the Ripper’s killing ground, provided the suspect with a solitary environment in which to come and go undetected. He had access to surgical equipment, including scalpels, and was experienced in watching postmortems being carried out.

10. Dr Francis Tumblety 

An Irish-American self-styled quack and a compulsive slummer of the East End, Doctor Francis Tumblety was certainly a strange character. He had a very public hatred of women and may have matched a couple of eyewitness descriptions of the killer. Tumblety was charged with certain "vices" but jumped his bail and fled the country.
Although we may not know the identity of the Ripper for certain, all of these suspects bear certain similarities to the description of Jack the Ripper. Who do you think Jack the Ripper was?


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The Jack the Ripper Casebook