Best-selling author links Jack the Ripper to Royal Family
Patricia Cornwell spent 11 years and personal fortune in researching Jack the Ripper
"Springheel Jack," or Jack the Ripper, who slaughtered five prostitutes in gas-lit, Victorian London has escaped identification well into the 21st Century. Now, best-selling crime novelist Patricia Cornwell vows to publish new research which she claims will help solve the mystery. She says she's unearthed evidence that confirms Walter Sickert, an influential artist, as the prime suspect.
"Springheel Jack," or Jack the Ripper, who slaughtered five prostitutes in gas-lit, Victorian London has escaped identification well into the 21st Century.
"I feel that I have cracked it," she said. "I believe it's Sickert, and I believe it now more than ever."
The 47-year-old Cornwell says the artist had links to the royal family, perhaps backing some kind of royal conspiracy in relation to the crimes.
Cornwell has been working with former Scotland Yard commander John Grieve to look through a selection of letters, held at The National Archives in Kew, allegedly sent to police by the killer.
While Cornwell's evidence is strictly circumstantial, she argues it hard to accept it is merely a coincidence that watermarks on some of the letters match paper used by Sickert.
"Will we ever prove it? No - how can you? It's a completely circumstantial case with the only real science that we can count on after all these years being the forensic analysis, which is really hard to feel is coincidental when you keep seeing water marks on paper that Jack the Ripper and Sickert had in common," she admits.
Cornwell acknowledges that even if the artist wrote some of the letters, it does not mean Sickert was the killer. "In court, a jury might struggle with that. They are very confessional and violent letters."
The writer has spent millions of her own money investigating the unidentified killer. The dedicated investigator even purchased Sickert's desk, plus 32 of his paintings to have them tested for DNA.
"I have a lot more detail including more information on what I call the 'royal conspiracy,'" she adds.
"For a start - Sir William Gull was Queen Victoria's surgeon. There have been rumors that Sir William Gull was helping to get rid of these prostitutes. Suffice to say there has been evidence that has turned up to say that Sir William was Sickert's family physician."
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