Could the most infamous and horrific crime of its time, and one of the most notorious cold cases in history, have been committed by a woman?
That is the theory suggested in a new book, Hand Of A Woman, about Jack the Ripper, and RadarOnline.com has exclusive details on the compelling evidence from author John Morris, who claims to know the identity of the murderer who has mystified investigators for over a century.
“It is a controversial theory to say that a woman is the murderer, but these were crimes of jealously, envy and passion and all very female-oriented,” Morris told RadarOnline.com in an exclusive interview.
The former solicitor and “Ripperology” expert from Dublin, Ireland has spent the past 50 years researching the notorious killer who terrorized the streets of Victorian-era London and grossly mutilated at least five (and possibly as many as 11) prostitutes between April 1888 and February 1891.
As RadarOnline.com previously reported the grisly nickname stemmed from the bodies being literally ripped apart with a sharp knife, and three even had their internal organs removed, prompting speculation that the killer possessed anatomical or surgical knowledge, and has since been immortalized in countless books, films, TV series and stage shows.
“The most stunning thing is there is no evidence that the killer was a man,” revealed Morris, who began scouring police witness statements, medical reports and inquests scripts from the cold cases when his late father first suggested ‘Jack’ may have actually been ‘Jacqueline.’
One of the most key pieces of evidence that he claims supports his theory were three items of women’s clothing that were found burned in victim number five, Mary Kelly’s, fireplace.
“It was always considered that they were hers, but it seems to be they were the killer’s clothes and she burned them and then took Mary’s clothes to escape,” explained Morris.
“One of the anomalies of the case is that a witness saw a woman in Mary’s clothes afterwards and thought that it was her and investigators could never explain that.”
In fact, Morris claims that Kelly is at the heart of the ground-breaking revelation and is directly connected to the new prime suspect.
“Royal gynecologist Sir John Williams is believed to have been having an affair with the last victim (Mary) and it was alleged that he killed her. My father had a gift for seeing the obvious and he realized that it was William's wife, Lizzie, that had the motive,” explained Morris. “We decided to open an investigation to look into it and everything kept pointing back to Lizzie.”
Trapped in an unhappy and childless marriage, Lizzie’s only route of escape was cut off when, in the summer of 1888, her family fortune was lost. Dependent on her husband for wealth, reputation and security, Morris argues that Lizzie would have done anything to defend her marriage and keep her man.
Many assume that a woman would not be capable, or strong enough, to commit the heinous murders, but the author revealed that the opposite is in fact true.
“Between 1888 and Feb 2012 there have been 30 Ripper-type attacks – women who had their throats slit, stomachs cut open and wombs cut out – 29 have been caught and they were all women,” he told RadarOnline.com.
“This type of attack is a woman-only crime. It’s maternal instincts gone amok, according to psychologists, and in fact, the Ripper coroner, Wynne Baxter, said the uterus was the organ the murderer was determined to possess.”
The Whitechapel murders have long thought to have been committed by a sexual predator, but although the victim's clothing was rearranged, none of the women were raped.
Besides the fact that a woman was not convicted of anything of that magnitude until two years later, one of the main reasons why it is assumed the killer was a man stems from the famous “From Hell” letters that were sent to Scotland Yard that claimed responsibility for the murders and were signed ‘Jack The Ripper.’
“It instilled in the public conscious that he was a man and the world has never looked back,” said the author. “However, since then it has been proven that the incriminating letter was penned by Frederick Best, who worked for the Star newspaper in London."
Over the years a slew of suspects stemming from rich to poor -- including Prince Albert Victor, Duke of Clarence and Avondale, Royal obstetrician Sir John Williams, David Cohen, James Kelly, and even Lewis Carroll, author of Alice In Wonderland -- have been investigated but Morris said none of them can be conclusively connected to all of the victims.
“It is a shoe that doesn’t really fit. Lizzie Williams is the only one who ticks all the boxes,” Morris explained.
Jack The Ripper: The Hand Of A Woman is available at SerenBooks.com.