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Last Updated: Thursday, 13 July 2006, 16:56 GMT 17:56 UK
Ripper case notes given to museum
A photograph and handwritten notes
The notes were passed down through the officer's family
Handwritten notes which name a prime suspect in the 1880s serial killer Jack The Ripper case have taken their place in Scotland Yard's Crime Museum.

The notes, donated by relatives of an officer involved in the investigation, identify Polish barber Aaron Kosminski as his chief murder suspect.

This marked the re-launch of the museum which features exhibits from famous cases dating back to 1875.

The exhibition, which is used in police training, is not open to the public.

Relatives of Ch Insp Donald Swanson, the senior investigating officer of the Jack the Ripper case, handed over the notes to the museum at Scotland Yard's headquarters in central London.

Suspect fled

Ch Insp Sawnson had made handwritten notes in a book about the memoirs of Dr Robert Anderson - Scotland Yard's assistant commissioner at the time of the Jack the Ripper investigation.

He named Kosminski and explained why he believed him to be the killer.

Kominski came to the attention of the police after threatening his sister with a knife, but he was insane so detectives could not interview him.

Handing over the book on Thursday, Ch Insp Sawnson's great-grandson Nevil said: "We have had this book in the family for quite some time and we thought the most appropriate and safest place for it was here".

Medical training

The serial killer is believed to have killed five prostitutes in Whitechapel, east London, in 1888 but was never caught.

His victims were either strangled or stabbed, with some of the bodies badly mutilated and even having organs removed. Some believed he had medical training.

The pseudonym Jack the Ripper was coined from a letter sent to a London news agency at the time of the murders, supposedly from the killer himself, but which police later dismissed as a hoax.

The Crime Museum contains, among other items, death masks, casts of necks disfigured by rope burns and a collection of nooses hanging from a gallows.

See more on the artifacts


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