5.30am, September 8, 1888: Woman’s mutilated body found in Hanbury-st backyard—shock 2nd murder in 9 days!
- Credit: Andre Deutsch publishers
Another mutilated body of a woman is found at 5.30am on September 8, 1888, in the back yard of a rooming house at 29 Hanbury-street—the second murder in nine days within a mile, the third in less than a month!
Prostitute Annie Chapman is found by one of the lodgers hacked to death in a pool of blood.
Her throat is deeply dissevered, the incision through the skin jagged and reaching right round the neck.
Smears of blood are on the wooden paling separating the yard from next door, about 14ins from the ground, immediately above where the body is found.
The murder weapon used on Annie’s throat and stomach was a sharp knife with a thin, narrow blade, at least 8ins long.
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The first police officer on the scene is Insp Joseph Chandler from nearby Commercial-street police station, Whitechapel H Division.
He interviews people in the house. John Richardson, one of the lodgers, had been in the back yard half-an-hour before, at 5am, to trim a loose piece of leather from his boot, but had heard or seen nothing after that.
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Carpenter Albert Cadosch was in the yard next door at 27 Hanbury-street around half-past-five and recalls hearing voices, followed by “something falling against the fence,” he tells the detective.
Two pills are recovered from the back yard which Chapman had for a lung condition, along with part of a torn envelope, piece of muslin and a comb.
The envelope bears the crest of the Sussex Regiment, later traced to Crossingham’s lodging house. It’s thought she took it to keep her pills in.