Writer defends Ripper interest

From Associated Press

Bestselling American crime writer Patricia Cornwell has taken out full-page newspaper ads to defend her investigation into solving a 19th century killing spree.

The ads in two British national newspapers on Saturday came days after one of the papers accused her of having an “obsession” with the Jack the Ripper case.

“My ongoing investigation is far from an obsession, but an excellent opportunity to provide a platform for applying modern science to a very old, highly visible case in the hope that we might learn something that could help solve modern crimes,” Cornwell wrote in the ads, published in the Independent and the Guardian.

In a 2002 book, Cornwell claimed to have solved the mystery of the Ripper, who murdered and mutilated at least five prostitutes in London’s filthy, foggy East End in 1888.


“Portrait of a Killer: Jack the Ripper -- Case Closed” pointed the finger at Walter Sickert, an Impressionist painter and printmaker. The theory was greeted with skepticism by Jack the Ripper experts, many of whom have their own theories about the killer’s identity.