Why The Police Were Unable To Catch Jack The Ripper

1458 words - 6 pages

Why the Police were Unable to Catch Jack the Ripper

In the Victorian Times, smog was a big problem. It made visibility
extremely bad, so the murders would have been harder to witness. There
were lots of prostitutes because there weren’t many jobs available for
woman, so they were forced on the streets. Most turned to alcohol. The
people out at the time of the murder would have been tramps and
drunks, not reliable witnesses. The East End streets were maze-like,
and easy to escape from. These were a few of the problems the police
encountered.

Jack the Ripper was extremely clever to be able to evade the police
the whole period in which he committed his murders. He chose different
locations for his murders, so the police couldn’t track his movements.
He didn’t know his victims, so no link or pattern could be
established. Also, no inquires could be linked from the people who
knew the victims. It is likely he was rich, because he probably had a
carriage due to the swiftness of his escape from the crime scene. This
is because some of the bodies were found still warm. He was able to
blend in with the East End, and not stand out, so that suggests he may
have been originally from the East End. However, there’s always the
possibility he was just mad, and randomly picked his victims and was
blessed with luck.

There was massive interference from the press which immensely delayed
the case. Journalists weren’t interested in the truth; they just
wanted a good story that would sell papers. They frequently talked
about how the police still hadn’t caught the murderer. This placed
pressure on them, causing them to change the detective in charge of
the case in an effort to illustrate what they were doing to move on
the case. Newspapers produced bias accounts of the crime, like
printing pictures of Jack the Ripper with Jewish features. Theories
were on whom the murderer might be, causing tension in the Whitechapel
area and creating more racial hatred. The press received lots of
letters ‘from the murderer’ but held them back. Like the Dear Boss
letter, They didn’t give it to the police for a few days, slowing down
any action that could have been taken.

The police had only just been set up when the murders occurred, so had
no previous experience. The only way to prove someone committed a
murder was to catch them in the act or get a confession. Though they
increased the number of officers, they only ever came across the
bodies, warm. There was more than one police force operating in London
at the time, which meant that there was a lack of communication. In
fact, the superior officers told their subordinates to not reveal any
evidence they retrieved to their rival force, each police force
wanting the glory of catching the Whitechapel murderer. The
Metropolitan police force was responsible for...

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