8 year old boy mutilated and murdered – at the hands of the milkman?

8 year old boy mutilated and murdered – at the hands of the milkman?

John Gill-CrimeShop.jpg

Bradford, West Yorkshire – 

Some have tried to tie the murder of 8 year old John Gill to Jack the Ripper, no evidence suggests that Jack the Ripper would have murdered John.

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December 28 1888 the body of 8-year-old John Gill was found in Manningham Lane in Bradford. Newspapers tried to tie his murder to Jack the Ripper because John’s throat had been cut, his abdomen cut open, he had been stabbed, his arms and legs were hacked off and his ears removed.

His heart and entrails were torn out of his body and found just lying about on the ground near his body which had been covered in a crude manner and just tossed into an outhouse.

A man by the name of William Barrett was arrested for the murder but was later found not guilty. William was a milkman in the area, it is said that sometimes John would accompany the milkman on his rounds.

The police were led to the milkman because they sent the contents of the John’s stomach in to be tested where the found that John died from a cold medication, presumably used so as to abduct and the kill the boy without him screaming for help.

They also found that John had recently eaten currant cake. According to police reports, they found traces of currant cake on the milkman’s bread knife.

The last time John was seen alive had been earlier that day sliding on ice with his friends.

While the media ran at full stride with the idea that Jack the Ripper had killed this young lad, the police had a different theory altogether.

They thought that perhaps a group of drunken young men had killed John, their minds having been filled with the fantasy of murder and mutilation.  

The only three realities here are that John was murdered and his body mutilated in one of the most heinous ways, it was not Jack the Ripper who killed him, and it was in fact a copy cat.

It is highly unlikely that Jack the Ripper would go from killing female prostitutes to young boys.

The idea of a group of young men killing John is a bit of a stretch however. It was one man, someone who often thought of murder and mutilation, he had a curiosity for it.

He fought the urge his entire life, but after Jack the Ripper’s killings it was almost like giving this young man permission to go through with it.

Jack the Ripper only offered this man the inspiration to go through with the murder and mutilation.

It would be easy enough to let the press run with the idea that Jack the Ripper had committed the crime the suspect was quite sure that he could get away with the murder.

And he did just that officially.

Police it would seem never gave up on the idea that the milkman had committed the crime.

Rightfully so, they had more than just the cake to tie him to the crime however, a magistrate refused to see or hear all of it and so, the case was never officially solved.

Cristal M Clark

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