A definition of witness.


Her Parents Lived In Miller's Court

Mrs. Kennedy was one of the witnesses whose name appeared in many newspapers in the aftermath of the murder of Mary Kelly.

her parents actually lived in Miller's Court and, on in the early hours of the day of the murder, she had gone to stay with them.

She was one of the neighbours who was quoted as saying that she had heard a faint cry of "Murder" at between 3.30am and 4am on the morning of the 9th of November, 1888.

However, she knew nothing of the murder until she tried to leave Miller's Court later that morning and found that the police were preventing anyone from doing so.

The Salisbury Times, was one of several newspapers that - on Saturday, 17th November, 1888 - gave a detailed account of what she had seen:-

Mrs. Kennedy, who was on the day of the murder staying with her parents at a house facing the room where the mutilated body was found, made an important statement.

She said that about three o'clock on Friday morning she entered Dorset Street on her way to the house of her parents, which is situated immediately opposite that in which the murder was committed.

She noticed three persons at the corner of the street near the Britannia public-house.

There was man - a young man, respectably dressed, and with a dark moustache - talking to a woman whom she did not know, and also a female poorly clad, and without any head gear.

The man and woman appeared to be the worse for liquor, and she heard the man say, "Are you comin'?", whereupon the woman, who appeared to obstinate, turned in an opposite direction to which the man apparently wished her to go.

Mrs. Kennedy went on her way and nothing unusual occurred until about half an hour later.

She stated that she did not retire to rest immediately she reached her parents' abode, but sat up, and between half-past three and quarter to four she heard a cry of "murder"; in woman's voice proceed from the direction in which Mary Kelly's room was situated. As the cry was not repeated, she took no further notice of the circumstance until the morning, when she found the police in possession of the place preventing all egress to the occupants of the small houses in the court.

When questioned by the police as to what she had heard throughout the night, she made a statement to the above effect.

She has now supplemented that statement by the following:-

"On Wednesday evening, about eight o'clock, I and my sister were in the neighbourhood of Bethnal Green Road, when we were accosted by a very suspicious looking man about 40 years of age. He was about five feet seven inches high, wore a short jacket, over which he had a long topcoat. He had a black moustache, and wore a billycock hat.

He invited us to accompany him into a lonely spot, as he was known about there, and there was a policeman looking at him."

She asserts that no policeman was in sight.

He made several strange remarks, and appeared to be agitated. He was very white in the face, and made every endeavour to prevent them looking him straight in the face. He carried a black bag.

He avoided walking with them, and led the way into a very dark thoroughfare at the back of the workhouse, inviting them to follow, which they did.

He then pushed open a small door in a pair of large gates, and requested one of them to follow him, whereupon the women became suspicious.

He acted in a very suspicious manner and refused to leave his bag in possession of one of the females.

Both women became alarmed at his actions, and escaped, at the same time raising alarm of "Jack the Ripper."

A gentleman who was passing is stated to have intercepted the man, while the women made their escape.

Mrs. Kennedy asserts that the man whom she saw on Saturday morning with the woman, at the corner of Dorset Street, resembled very closely the individual who caused such alarm on the night in question, and that she would recognize him again if confronted with him.

There is no cause to doubt this woman's statement. The stories told by both those women are certainly the most important points that came to light on Saturday."

Source: The Salisbury Times, Saturday, 17th November, 1888.