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Feb.1893 Letter About E.K.Larkins-SRA

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  • #16
    February 1901

    In February 1901 Anderson had an article, 'Punishing Crime', in The Nineteenth Century. Again his words make for interesting reading -

    "Or, again, take a notorious case of a different kind, 'the Whitechapel murders' of the autumn of 1888. At that time the sensation-mongers of the newspaper press fostered the belief that life in London was no longer safe, and that no woman ought to venture abroad in the streets after nightfall. And one enterprising journalist went so far as to impersonate the cause of all this terror as 'Jack the Ripper,' a name by which he will probably go down to history. But all such silly hysterics could not alter the fact that these crimes were a cause of danger only to a particular section of a small and definite class of women, in a limited district of the East End; and that the inhabitants of the metropolis generally were just as secure during the weeks the fiend was on the prowl as they were before the mania seized him, or after he had been safely caged in an asylum."

    It is true that the lunatic theme, runs through Anderson's theorising from 1892 onwards, but it is interesting, if not significant, to note that he makes no mention of a Polish Jew until 1910.

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    • #17
      Hi Stewart and Chris

      The whole business concerning the law on lunatics seems to have been a minefield. This piece about the 1800 Criminal Lunatics Act suggests that someone could be sent to a place of the Government's choice even if the prosecution was about to fail (section c). So this suggests the Government had pretty wide powers. Whether this act had been significantly altered by 1891, I don't know.

      http://studymore.org.uk/mhhglo.htm#CriminalLunatics

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      • #18
        Lunacy Act 1890

        Originally posted by Robert Linford View Post
        Hi Stewart and Chris
        The whole business concerning the law on lunatics seems to have been a minefield. This piece about the 1800 Criminal Lunatics Act suggests that someone could be sent to a place of the Government's choice even if the prosecution was about to fail (section c). So this suggests the Government had pretty wide powers. Whether this act had been significantly altered by 1891, I don't know.
        http://studymore.org.uk/mhhglo.htm#CriminalLunatics
        There was also the Lunacy Act of 1890.

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        • #19
          Yes Stewart. A lot of very technical reading!

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          • #20
            ... in view of the nature of the complaint made by Larkins, the natural reply from Anderson, had any positive identification of the Ripper taken place before then, would be that Larkins' views did not need investigation as the identity of the murderer was known to the police.--SPE

            ...It is also relevant to note that Aaron Kosminski was incarcerated in the relatively insecure Colney Hatch as opposed to the high security Broadmoor Asylum for the criminally insane. If Kosminski was the 'homicidal maniac' that Anderson reckoned him to be this doesn't make any sense.-SPE

            Well taken points,SPE. The first response from you above is what I was alluding to...that there was no need to respond to the HO in that fashion if SRA had already determined 2 years prior that the case was solved.... and Chris George's point that some response was required is likewise true.

            While the thread continues with contributions from CG,RCL, and SPE..if you have questions for any of these gents...please be mindful of the content of the thread and the focus of the discussion. It would be in everyone's advantage to keep on the track here..Thanks in advance.

            One final question germane to the issue for anyone:

            How many instances,offhand, did SRA make statements in 180 degree opposition to the comments within the 1910 Blackwood's Magazine article?
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