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Point To Ponder : Murdered While Sleeping Rough

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  • Point To Ponder : Murdered While Sleeping Rough

    Just in case anyone looking in on JTR Forums may feel that researchers here are as inflexible as those who buy into the 'Victims murdered while sleeping rough' theory...I've set this thread up. Not to bash Rubenhold, but to look at 2 cases which may be related where over 2 dozen people were murdered while sleeping rough on the pavement or not far from the street.





    For some time now, I've been aware ( as I'm sure some others here are as well) of Calcutta's 'Stoneman'.

    The Stoneman is a name given by the popular English-language print media of Calcutta, India to an unidentified serial killer who murdered at least 13 homeless people of that city during their sleep ( on the streets ) in 1989. The name is also given to the perpetrator of a similar series of murders in Bombay from 1985 to 1988. It has been speculated that these were the work of the same person, who could have been responsible for as many as 26 murders.

    The Stoneman was blamed for thirteen murders over six months (the first in June 1989), but it was never established whether the crimes were committed by one person or a group of individuals. The Calcutta Police also failed to resolve whether any of the crimes were committed as a copycat murder. To date, no one has been charged with any of the crimes; all thirteen cases remain unsolved.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stoneman

    Video :

    The Stoneman: India's Version of Jack the Ripper

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T0Ed...l=FreakyInform er
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  • #2
    One of the differences I see between the Indian murders are that Chapman, Stride, and Eddowes were seen with men just prior to their demise....while Nichols, I'm certain, was out trying to scarf her doss money by solicitation and wouldn't have nodded out on the pavement. One of the things that the Rubenhold camp fails to take into consideration is that these women still had enough dignity to not ruin perhaps the only clothes they owned by sleeping on dirt, stones, or bricks.

    Your thoughts ?
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    • #3
      I wouldn't know where to start, because there are so many obvious objections to the "rough sleeping" theory, and I don't know how Rubenhold deals with them.

      Taking Annie Chapman alone, we have evidence that at 1.50am she went out to get money for her bed, that at 4.50am her body (whether dead or alive) wasn't where it was later found, that at about 5.30am she was seen outside the building talking to a man, and that at the same time or a little earlier voices and a sound like someone falling were heard from the back yard. On top of all that, there are the questions of why she should have chosen to sleep in the open air rather than the passageway, or if in the open air why in a position where anyone going into the yard would have been likely to tread on her.

      Does Rubenhold try to answer those kinds of questions?

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Chris Phillips View Post
        Taking Annie Chapman alone, we have evidence that at 1.50am she went out to get money for her bed, that at 4.50am her body (whether dead or alive) wasn't where it was later found, that at about 5.30am she was seen outside the building talking to a man
        Hi Chris.

        Yet, it's that very 3 hour and 40 minute gap that worries me.

        That's a long time for a sickly woman to be soliciting after the pubs have closed. How long was she supposed to keep wandering the streets, futilely looking for a client before giving up?

        Having spent a couple nights out of doors, 3 hours and 40 minutes seems like an eternity.

        Even non-crackpot historians (like Stewart Evans) have speculated that the 'missing three hours' might be explained by Chapman sleeping rough. (He suggested Itchy Park).

        But yes, if Elizabeth Long can be believed, Chapman was soliciting or at least having a conversation that was interpreted as soliciting at 5.30 a.m.

        Or more precisely, the man may have solicited her.

        I dunno. I used to drive through a red-light district on my way to work, and at various hours.

        Over many years, I saw precisely one prostitute soliciting at 5.30 in the morning and she was so zonked out of her mind on heroin or some other drug that she probably didn't know if it was light or dark.

        It was so startling to see her soliciting on the sidewalk in broad daylight while people were on their way to work, that it stuck in my mind.

        I can see both sides not being entirely right, nor entirely wrong.

        Chapman may have been sleeping rough, but woke in time to meet her killer.

        I'm not really entirely happy with either scenario.

        But I always keep in my mind two or three cases that were solved many years later through DNA analysis...and every contemporary assumption was shown to have been wrong. It wasn't A, nor B. It was C.

        Comment


        • #5
          The timing on Chapman's death, more than what she may have been doing, has been most problematic to me.
          Best Wishes,
          Cris Malone
          ______________________________________________
          "Objectivity comes from how the evidence is treated, not the nature of the evidence itself. Historians can be just as objective as any scientist."

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by R. J. Palmer View Post

            Hi Chris.

            Yet, it's that very 3 hour and 40 minute gap that worries me.

            That's a long time for a sickly woman to be soliciting after the pubs have closed. How long was she supposed to keep wandering the streets, futilely looking for a client before giving up?

            Having spent a couple nights out of doors, 3 hours and 40 minutes seems like an eternity.

            Even non-crackpot historians (like Stewart Evans) have speculated that the 'missing three hours' might be explained by Chapman sleeping rough. (He suggested Itchy Park).

            But yes, if Elizabeth Long can be believed, Chapman was soliciting or at least having a conversation that was interpreted as soliciting at 5.30 a.m.

            Or more precisely, the man may have solicited her.

            I dunno. I used to drive through a red-light district on my way to work, and at various hours.

            Over many years, I saw precisely one prostitute soliciting at 5.30 in the morning and she was so zonked out of her mind on heroin or some other drug that she probably didn't know if it was light or dark.

            It was so startling to see her soliciting on the sidewalk in broad daylight while people were on their way to work, that it stuck in my mind.

            I can see both sides not being entirely right, nor entirely wrong.

            Chapman may have been sleeping rough, but woke in time to meet her killer.

            I'm not really entirely happy with either scenario.

            But I always keep in my mind two or three cases that were solved many years later through DNA analysis...and every contemporary assumption was shown to have been wrong. It wasn't A, nor B. It was C.
            But isn't Rubenhold's idea not just that they were sleeping rough, but that they were sleeping rough in the places where they were killed, and were attacked as they slept? This makes no sense at all to me, particularly in Annie Chapman's case.

            It just seems that she has a preconceived conviction that they weren't prostitutes, and that she's come up with this as the most plausible explanation of how they could have been killed if not by a client. And pretty implausible it is.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Chris Phillips View Post

              But isn't Rubenhold's idea not just that they were sleeping rough, but that they were sleeping rough in the places where they were killed, and were attacked as they slept? This makes no sense at all to me, particularly in Annie Chapman's case.

              It just seems that she has a preconceived conviction that they weren't prostitutes, and that she's come up with this as the most plausible explanation of how they could have been killed if not by a client. And pretty implausible it is.
              Yes, I don't disagree, Chris.

              Rubenhold took it too far, and ended up with a number of highly implausible conclusions. I suspect that she was so eager to show that the victims weren't prostitutes, but sisters, daughters, mothers, workers, dreamers, etc. that she went to the extreme of suggesting they wouldn't have engaged in casual prostitution. For her, it became a sort of political protest.

              Even so, I try to keep my criticism more nuanced, because I suspect that she isn't far off-the-mark in assuming the 'Ripper' was targeting slum dwellers, rather than 'sex workers.' This isn't a popular opinion and I don't deny that the crimes had disturbing and revolting sexual overtones, but the social level of the victims has to count for something. I think killers of this sort are doing what they set out to do. If he wanted to attack young girls in Bow, or sub-urbanite women in Kennington, he would have done it. I'm taking his choice seriously, because until proven otherwise, I think it was a choice.

              I also disagree with Ruben's belief that the murderer's identity 'is irrelevant.' I think she has said this more than once, and Bleakley accuses 'Ripperologists' of being myopic on this point, but I would suggest that theirs is the myopic, and ultimately anti-historical view.

              Criminology is about criminals. Rubenhold and Bleakley are not going to change that. The early criminologists spent very little time discussing the lives of victims, because it was a given that they didn't deserve to be victimized.

              For the most part, meteorologists studying hurricanes don't analyze the lives of those living near the ocean; they just want to learn about the storm that is about to smash them.

              Few 'Ripper' writers have speculated intelligently about the murderer's identity, and many have even turned it into a ridiculous parlor game, but that doesn't mean it is a futile or pointless topic of inquiry.

              Even on a lower level, wouldn't it be of historical value to know whether or not the Assistant Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police was being truthful when he said that the killer was a local Jew protected by his people?




              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by R. J. Palmer View Post

                Yes, I don't disagree, Chris.

                Rubenhold took it too far, and ended up with a number of highly implausible conclusions. I suspect that she was so eager to show that the victims weren't prostitutes, but sisters, daughters, mothers, workers, dreamers, etc. that she went to the extreme of suggesting they wouldn't have engaged in casual prostitution. For her, it became a sort of political protest.

                Even so, I try to keep my criticism more nuanced, because I suspect that she isn't far off-the-mark in assuming the 'Ripper' was targeting slum dwellers, rather than 'sex workers.' This isn't a popular opinion and I don't deny that the crimes had disturbing and revolting sexual overtones, but the social level of the victims has to count for something. I think killers of this sort are doing what they set out to do. If he wanted to attack young girls in Bow, or sub-urbanite women in Kennington, he would have done it. I'm taking his choice seriously, because until proven otherwise, I think it was a choice.

                I also disagree with Ruben's belief that the murderer's identity 'is irrelevant.' I think she has said this more than once, and Bleakley accuses 'Ripperologists' of being myopic on this point, but I would suggest that theirs is the myopic, and ultimately anti-historical view.

                Criminology is about criminals. Rubenhold and Bleakley are not going to change that. The early criminologists spent very little time discussing the lives of victims, because it was a given that they didn't deserve to be victimized.

                For the most part, meteorologists studying hurricanes don't analyze the lives of those living near the ocean; they just want to learn about the storm that is about to smash them.

                Few 'Ripper' writers have speculated intelligently about the murderer's identity, and many have even turned it into a ridiculous parlor game, but that doesn't mean it is a futile or pointless topic of inquiry.

                Even on a lower level, wouldn't it be of historical value to know whether or not the Assistant Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police was being truthful when he said that the killer was a local Jew protected by his people?



                I am a bit in the dark about what Rubenhold thinks, but if her point is partly about who the Ripper was targeting, then it would be a bit inconsistent if she thought the identity of the murderer were irrelevant. Obviously it could be highly relevant.

                I have tended to assume the choice of victims wasn't about social class or occupation, but about convenience - these women being the easiest to get alone in a secluded place. But that's only an assumption. If the Ripper were identified and his psychiatric records revealed an obsessive hatred for prostitutes - or for poor working-class women - we might know better.

                And as you say, it's only natural that criminologists should be more interested in criminals than victims. Your analogy of meteorologists is a good one. On the other hand, if Ripperologists are viewed more as historians than criminologists, a larger degree of interest in the victims is to be expected, and also a degree of interest in others involved in the case, such as police officers, witnesses, journalists, and even the range of people who have been proposed as suspects in the past. But I think that is generally what most research-oriented Ripperologists display (setting aside the narrow single-suspect fanatics, who I reckon are in the minority).

                Comment


                • #9
                  Just an observation here :

                  Women walking around by themselves, walking back and forth on a street...to the corner and back, let's say....at that time of night would ordinarily be considered on the game. Just like they do today in 2021.

                  Whether rightly or not, the killer would assume that too.

                  The gap in time between the last time Chapman was seen alive and the discovery of her corpse does, as it always has, make you wonder.

                  I feel it's possible that she may have been sleeping somewhere but awakened and forced to move on ( Not necessarily by a party that saw or heard her wherever she may have been snoozing, but she heard them and thought it better to move on).

                  One other thing. If Chapman had eventually found her doss money at 3 AM...would a lodging house permit her entry ? I know Donovan knew her pretty well....but wouldn't he have to turn her away ?

                  I ask this because if she would have been denied entry....she would have known this.
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                  • #10
                    If the Ripper wanted to kill women sleeping rough, we know there were places where people did crash for the night. Yet the victims were women out navigating the streets. As has been mentioned, maybe Annie knew places where she could sit or doze for a bit before having to move on. Or maybe she knew a place where she could sleep for a few hours and the Ripper accosted her when she was once again walking on the streets.

                    Actually that last thought could explain some factors about the curious time frame around Annie's demise. It is possible she knew someone who would occasionally let her sleep inside, somewhere. For instance, what about a back room in a pub? The business would reopen around 5:00 AM and she would have to get out. If a kind hearted employee let her stay a few hours, s/he certainly would not have come forward to give that information at the inquest.

                    Some 'profilers' have a new approach which is more like any research project. They correlate information and look for patterns. It is said the JtR type killer has strong fantasies and poor impulse control. When he decides to act upon his fantasies, he does. For him it is about acquiring a dead victim to slash. I see this as predator & prey.
                    The wickedness of the world is the dream of the plague.~~Voynich Manuscript

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Anna Morris View Post
                      If the Ripper wanted to kill women sleeping rough, we know there were places where people did crash for the night. Yet the victims were women out navigating the streets. As has been mentioned, maybe Annie knew places where she could sit or doze for a bit before having to move on. Or maybe she knew a place where she could sleep for a few hours and the Ripper accosted her when she was once again walking on the streets.

                      Actually that last thought could explain some factors about the curious time frame around Annie's demise. It is possible she knew someone who would occasionally let her sleep inside, somewhere. For instance, what about a back room in a pub? The business would reopen around 5:00 AM and she would have to get out. If a kind hearted employee let her stay a few hours, s/he certainly would not have come forward to give that information at the inquest.

                      Some 'profilers' have a new approach which is more like any research project. They correlate information and look for patterns. It is said the JtR type killer has strong fantasies and poor impulse control. When he decides to act upon his fantasies, he does. For him it is about acquiring a dead victim to slash. I see this as predator & prey.
                      There was no need for Chapman to sleep, outside inquest testimony showed that people would sleep in the hallway and on the stairs at 29 Hanbury Street, both easily accessible due to the front door being left open.

                      Rubenhold in my opinion has clearly used this "killed while sleeping" to overexaggerate the plight of these women.

                      www.trevormarriott.co.uk

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                      • #12
                        I understand Cris Malone's remark on Post 5.

                        Elizabeth Long heard the brewer's clock in Brick Lane strike at 5:30am just before she walked into Hanbury Street on the morning of Sept 8th. Long claimed she saw a man and a woman talking with each other on the pavement near #29 and #31 Hanbury Street. This sighting would have been shortly after 5:30am.

                        Albert Cadosch heard something fall against the back fence at #29. He then walked four blocks past the Spitalfields Church and claimed it was 5:32am when he walked past it. So according to these words, whatever Cadosch heard that had fallen against the fence probably occurred no later than 5:30am.

                        Dr. Phillips viewed the corpse and placed the time of death at about 4:20am.

                        * Long's words persuade people to think that Chapman died after 5:30am.

                        * Cadosch's words persuade people to think that Chapman died shortly prior to 5:30am.

                        * Dr. Phillips' words persuade people to think that Chapman died around 4:20am.

                        Yes Cris, this can be problematic.

                        The Home Office Files state, "doubtful evidence points to some thing between 5:30 and 6: - but medical evidence says about 4'o'cl."

                        The Apr 2005 issue of Ripper Notes had a fine article entitled "Considerable Doubt" that dealt with the time of Chapman's death. The article provided the information above and it shared a couple of good newspaper quotes:

                        Very grave doubt now exists as to the exact time when the woman Chapman was murdered. - The Daily News Sept 17, 1888.

                        It is considered difficult to believe that a woman who was so well known in the district cannot be traced for four hours. - The Star Sept 13, 1888.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          This is a pretty well worn discussion and regardless of what people believe the women were up to, the sad reality is that Jack simply went after the easier targets. I think we can be 95% sure that they were soliciting at the time, but that shouldn't be seen through modern eyes as being a sleight on their character. They were simply doing what they had to do to get by, in an era when support services for such women were either potentially harsher than the reality of life on the streets, or completely non existent.

                          As for Annie, I tend to agree it's possible that she rested rough for a few hours somewhere, before maybe either being moved on or simply feeling too ill to be able to rest properly. If you follow the vlogs these days where homeless people are interviewed, the being moved on several times throughout the night thing is still a recurring theme. Can we be sure Annie was soliciting the man Long described? It seems highly likely, though I suppose it's possible to suggest that either she knew him or maybe even had stayed with him.

                          Cheers,
                          Adam.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Joe Chetcuti View Post
                            I understand Cris Malone's remark on Post 5.

                            Elizabeth Long heard the brewer's clock in Brick Lane strike at 5:30am just before she walked into Hanbury Street on the morning of Sept 8th. Long claimed she saw a man and a woman talking with each other on the pavement near #29 and #31 Hanbury Street. This sighting would have been shortly after 5:30am.

                            Albert Cadosch heard something fall against the back fence at #29. He then walked four blocks past the Spitalfields Church and claimed it was 5:32am when he walked past it. So according to these words, whatever Cadosch heard that had fallen against the fence probably occurred no later than 5:30am.

                            Dr. Phillips viewed the corpse and placed the time of death at about 4:20am.

                            * Long's words persuade people to think that Chapman died after 5:30am.

                            * Cadosch's words persuade people to think that Chapman died shortly prior to 5:30am.

                            * Dr. Phillips' words persuade people to think that Chapman died around 4:20am.

                            Yes Cris, this can be problematic.

                            The Home Office Files state, "doubtful evidence points to some thing between 5:30 and 6: - but medical evidence says about 4'o'cl."

                            The Apr 2005 issue of Ripper Notes had a fine article entitled "Considerable Doubt" that dealt with the time of Chapman's death. The article provided the information above and it shared a couple of good newspaper quotes:

                            Very grave doubt now exists as to the exact time when the woman Chapman was murdered. - The Daily News Sept 17, 1888.

                            It is considered difficult to believe that a woman who was so well known in the district cannot be traced for four hours. - The Star Sept 13, 1888.
                            Certainly there's a discrepancy between Long and Cadosch, but I really think Phillips's estimate of the time of death has to be disregarded. These days we know a lot more about the estimation of time of death, and it involves a huge amount of uncertainty even on the basis of precise temperature measurements made in the most favourable conditions. Phillips didn't make any temperature measurements, and even if he had the nature of Chapman's injuries would have made them very difficult to interpret. On top of that we have Richardson's direct evidence that Phillips's estimate was wrong.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Adam Went View Post
                              This is a pretty well worn discussion and regardless of what people believe the women were up to, the sad reality is that Jack simply went after the easier targets. I think we can be 95% sure that they were soliciting at the time, but that shouldn't be seen through modern eyes as being a sleight on their character. They were simply doing what they had to do to get by, in an era when support services for such women were either potentially harsher than the reality of life on the streets, or completely non existent.
                              Quite. What I dislike most about Rubenhold's views is that by implication they do pass judgment on the women who resorted to prostitution.

                              Nor should we assume that women don't still have to resort to prostitution now. As Jesus once said, and I think rightly ...

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