Yankele the Ripper: Was Britain's Most Notorious Serial Killer a Jew?

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Illustrative.Credit: Dreamstime

A self-proclaimed "armchair detective" claims that he has confirmed using DNA evidence that a Polish Jew suspected of being Jack the Ripper was indeed the notorious serial killer, several news outlets have reported.

Russell Edwards asserts that Aaron Kosminski, an immigrant who allegedly spent the end of his life in an asylum, was "definitely, categorically and absolutely" the anonymous man who committed at least five gruesome murders in London's East End neighborhood of Whitehall in 1888, in an article by the British Daily Mail.

Edwards said he drew his conclusion based on a blood-stained shawl he bought in 2007 at an auction in Suffolk, according to the Mirror.

"I've got the only piece of forensic evidence in the whole history of the case," he said. "I've spent 14 years working on it, and we have definitely solved the mystery of who Jack the Ripper was."

At least five murders are attributed to Jack the Ripper, the pseudonym given to the serial killer after a letter he allegedly signed was published. His victims were prostitutes.

Edwards, 48, said the shawl was found by the body of Catherine Eddowes, one of the Ripper's victims. A police officer, Amos Simpson, had taken the scarf and given it to his wife, but she refused to wear it because of the blood, and the scarf was stored away until it was finally put up for auction. After acquiring it, Edwards enlisted the help of Jari Louhelainen, a molecular biology expert, the Mirror reported.

Edwards tells his story in a new booked called "Naming Jack the Ripper," which will be published on Tuesday.

In 2011, the Daily Mail reported that a Spanish handwriting expert concluded that Scotland Yard's Chief Inspector Frederick Abberline was Jack the Ripper, by compairing Abberline's writing with that in the Ripper's diary, which allegedly surfaced in Liverpool in 1992.

Illustration from the 19th century about the Jack the Ripper mystery.Credit: Wikimedia Commons

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