Time to read: 2 minutes
According to forensic experts, they have finally identified Jack the Ripper, the notorious serial killer who terrorized London’s streets. DNA tests show that Aaron Kosminski, a Polish barber who was 23 years old and leading police suspect at the time, was Jack the Ripper. However, some critics say that the evidence is insufficient and the results do not prove 100% that Kosminski was the killer.
Jack the Ripper is a famous serial killer known for murdering at least 5 prostitutes in 1988. All of the killings were in or near the Whitechapel district in London’s East End.
The five known victims were:
Mary Ann Nichols, Annie Chapman, Elizabeth Stride, Catherine Eddowes and Mary Jane Kelly.
In all of the cases, the victims throat was cut and the bodies were then mutilated. As Kosminski was a barber, its expected that he used a cut-thoat razor to slash the throats of his victims.
The killings all happened between August and November 1888.
The DNA sample came from a silk shawl that was found next to the mutilated body of Catherine Eddowes, one of the rippers victims. Traces of semen and blood were found on the shawl.
Kosminski was one of the police suspects at the time, however there was insufficient evidence to charge him and he was released without charge.
A biochemist from Liverpool called Jari Louhelainen carried out DNA tests on the shawl, however to prove the ripper was Kosminski, they would need to find a living relative to compare the DNA to.
They managed to contact relatives of both Kosminski and the victim Eddowes. After analysing both families DNA and comparing it to the DNA on the shawl, the DNA was a match of a living relative of Kosminski. This was the proof that was needed to finally identify Jack the Ripper as Aaron Kosminski.