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The chain of evidence or provenance on the shawl is less than stellar. In the piece on the Daily Mail's website, the aforementioned amateur sleuth writes that the shawl is "said to have been found next to the body of one of the Ripper's victims, Catherine Eddowes, and soaked in her blood. There was no evidence for its provenance, although after the auction I obtained a letter from its previous owner who claimed his ancestor had been a police officer present at the murder scene and had taken it from there." (Emphasis mine) I am of the camp that believes extraordinary claims require extraordinarily clean and robust evidence. A shawl with no provenance record and an association based on a family claim is not what I call extraordinarily robust.
originally posted by: buster2010
Seeing how the woman was a prostitute there is no evidence that the DNA sample they got from the shawl actually came from the ripper. He could have just as easily been a customer of hers.
originally posted by: peter vlar
a reply to: buster2010
The guy they are trying to pin this on was known for having some odd sexual proclivities that eventually landed him in asylums for the rest of his life, including obsessively masturbating so not only does your point stand, it only ties him to one ripper victim. He was a paranoid schizophrenic and notorious pervert sure, but this in no way conclusively convicts him of being the ripper. It ties a Victorian sexual deviant to a single prostitute, not anywhere near as open and shut as they try to make it out to be.
originally posted by: JimNasium
a reply to: peter vlar
Before I comment.. what would be construed as "obsessive"? And for that 'pervert scale' On a scale betwixt 1-10 what would swim fins and a catcher's mask get Me?
originally posted by: Qumulys
While many are scoffing about 'it proves not much' do indeed have a point, it is by far the most exciting bit of evidence so far. It is probably as good as a result as there will ever be. Also, it's funny how the killings stopped once he was put in a mental hospital huh? For me, this is as close to a slam dunk as there will be to put a face on the ripper. And at least this guy got off the net instead of just talking the talk, he went out and walked the walk. Sad he chose the Daily Mail though...
Aaron Kosminski (born Aron Mordke Kozminski; 11 September 1865 – 24 March 1919) was a Polish Jew who was admitted to Colney Hatch Lunatic Asylum in 1891. "Kosminski" (without a forename) was named as a suspect by Melville Macnaghten in his 1894 memorandum and by former Chief Inspector Donald Swanson in handwritten comments in the margin of his copy of Assistant Commissioner Sir Robert Anderson's memoirs. Anderson wrote that a Polish Jew had been identified as the Ripper but that no prosecution was possible because the witness was also Jewish and refused to testify against a fellow Jew. Some authors are skeptical of this, while others use it in their theories. In his memorandum, Macnaghten stated that no one was ever identified as the Ripper, which directly contradicts Anderson's recollection. Kosminski lived in Whitechapel; however, he was largely harmless in the asylum. His insanity took the form of auditory hallucinations, a paranoid fear of being fed by other people, and a refusal to wash or bathe. In his book, The Cases That Haunt Us, former FBI profiler John Douglas states that a paranoid individual such as Kosminski would likely have openly boasted of the murders while incarcerated had he been the killer, but there is no record that he ever did so.