Jack the Ripper was one of the most notorious serial killers in history. In 1888, the Ripper was suspected of brutally killing at least five women in and around the Whitechapel district in the East End of London. The Ripper killings were the focus of an intensive police investigation and garnered enormous attention from the public and media, but the case went unsolved, and the identity of the Ripper remains a subject of widespread debate over a century later. So who was Jack the Ripper? Was he one of the contemporaneous suspects, or one revealed by historical and scientific research? Was he even a man - or, for that matter, was he real at all?
Montague John Druitt
Druitt was a leading suspect in the Ripper case, and his suicide in 1888 coincided with the end of the Ripper's murders.
The Ripper killings stopped after Druitt's death
The final Ripper murder took place on November 9, 1888, shortly before Druitt's death in December of that year.
Despite the fact that almost all the suspects were men, a woman would have been better positioned to commit the crimes and escape.
Witnesses and historians identify the Ripper as a woman
Though most accounts assume Jack the Ripper was a man, many eyewitnesses and historians alike say otherwise. Some theories suggest a woman was masquerading as one of the Ripper's victims hours after her killing, while others claim Lizzie Williams, the wife of a notable suspect, committed the murders.