A businessman by the name Russell Edwards has a theory about the identity of Jack the Ripper and thinks he can prove it. His suspect: Aaron Kosminski, a Polish immigrant who lived in Whitechapel at the time of the murders and who suffered from auditory hallucinations and paranoia. Kosminski was one of Scotland Yard’s prime suspects as well, but they could not prove he was the Ripper.
So, what is Edwards’ proof? In 2007, Edwards purchased a blood and semen stained shawl that allegedly came from Ripper victim Catherine Eddowes. With some detective work and modern DNA matching, he claims to have matched the 100+ year old semen with the DNA of a relative of Kosminski’s.
It is a pretty cool piece of forensic investigation if his theory proves true. And an expensive one, as he claims to have spent around £750,000 getting this far. But he will have a chance to recoup some of those losses. He has a book Naming Jack the Ripper coming out on Tuesday. Probably worth a read if you’re into Ripper lore.