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Mudgett Wins One for the Ripper

Jeffrey Mudgett
Jeffrey Mudgett believes his ancestor was Jack the Ripper.

Attorney and author Jeffrey Mudgett presented his case, “The Trial of Jack the Ripper,” to an audience of 130 Neumann University students and faculty on September 26, swearing everyone in as a “mock grand jury.”  He wanted the audience to weigh the evidence and, at the end of his presentation, vote on whether there is “probable cause” to bring H.H. Holmes, Mudgett’s great-great-great grandfather, to trial for the London murders committed by Jack the Ripper.  

At age 40, Mudgett inherited from his late grandfather diaries that belonged to his great-great-great grandfather, Herman Mudgett, also known as H.H. Holmes, one of America’s most notorious serial killers and an admitted murderer of 27 people in 19th century Chicago.  He spent years investigating and piecing together details of his ancestor’s horrific past and wrote a book, Bloodstains, about his findings. In the book he goes into detail about the murders in Chicago and pieces together evidence and similarities between the two men that indicate Holmes may have been Jack the Ripper.

Mudgett started by asking, “Can I prove that H.H. Holmes is Jack the Ripper? No, it takes a trial and a courtroom to do that.”  He then added, “But I can show probable cause that H.H. Holmes and Jack the Ripper are the same person.”

Mudgett presented nine pieces of evidence, exhibits A through I, in detail.  He discussed in depth appearance and facial similarities between the two and pointed out that Holmes fit the profile that Scotland Yard had of the Ripper.  A handwriting analysis of letters left to him by his late grandfather appears to confirm that the writing in Holmes’ letters is almost identical to the script in the Ripper letters.  Mudgett also shows a letter written by his great-great-great grandfather with a mention of the London weather, illustrating the possible presence of Holmes in Britain during the same time period.  Could these “evil geniuses’” indeed be the same person?

At the end of this presentation, according to a show of hands by the audience, Jeffrey Mudgett seemed to convince almost everyone in that Holmes should stand trial for the Ripper murders in Whitechapel, London. 


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