The Ripper…Jack the Ripper

Jack the Ripper. Probably one of the most infamous serial killers of all time. What makes him stand out from the rest is the fact that to this day, he was never/probably never will be caught (yes, he is dead, but his identity could still be revealed… but probably not). Although there are many people that were profiled to be this psycho killer, there was never enough evidence to convict anyone. So, who is this “mastermind” behind murder? Well, here’s a little background information on our old pal Jack:

During the late 1800s, Jack the Ripper committed his crimes in London, England (specifically in the Whitechapel district). Ironically, Whitechapel was known to have a very high population of prostitutes, drug dealers, etc. According to Criminal Minds, these people are known as “high-risk victims” due to their unique lifestyle that makes them more likely to be victims of crime. Therefore, Jack the Ripper targeted mainly prostitutes, having less of a chance of getting caught by police. Ranging from around 5-11 total victims, the “Canonical Five” who were Jack’s definite victims.

Methods of Killing: Jack would slash the victim’s throats. There were also bruises visible on the bodies of victims, older than the time of death. This brings the assumption that Jack would strangle his victims before he would cut their throats. He would also take an organ or body part as a token of his “successful kill”. A pattern began to show with his killings; they would always happen on a weekend, in the wee hours of the morning. Distinctively, Jack would write letters giving details about his killings, sometimes even leaving them with the victims.

How does this relate to Criminal Minds, you may be asking?

Season Two, Episode 18, entitled “Jones”.

PAUSE!!!! If you have not seen this episode yet, I recommend watching it before reading on, as I do reveal some spoilers.

Due to a traumatic past (explained in depth in the episode), Sarah Danlin became obsessed with Jack the Ripper, and her killings in the show replicated his killing style. However, because she is a woman, her method of killing had to be changed a bit.

Sarah would lure her victims (all men) away from crowded places with promises of sex. Once she got them into a private place, she would slit their throats. After killing about six men, the Behavior Analysis Unit (“BAU”) concludes that this must be the work of a Jack the Ripper copycat, as the methods of killing were quite similar.

Although Sarah would not take an organ from her victims, she would remove an organ from the body, leaving it at the scene of the crime. She did however take a trophy, like Jack would. Most of the time this would be small knick-knacks with little value.

Do you think she did enough to perfect the “copycat” role? Nope. There’s one last detail:

Sarah would also type out letters that reflected the writing style of Jack’s and would leave them with the victims at the scene of the crime.

As you may know, most episodes of Criminal Minds episodes end about the same. A murder occurs, the team makes a “profile”, they figure out who the killer is, Garcia finds the killer’s address at unworldly like speeds, and the team puts away the killer. So, it was inevitable that Sarah was caught and incarcerated in the end—unlike Jack the Ripper, whose case remains unsolved, even almost 200 years later.

Introduction: So Crazy, It Could Be Criminal!

Welcome, fellow passion bloggers/readers! If you got the chance to read my RCL post from this week, you would have read a statement a little out of the ordinary.

“When I was 9-years-old, I witnessed a man get stabbed right before my eyes.”

WHAT??!!

To any sane person, this sentence seems to be very alarming, so let me just elaborate on what really happened that day.

It was the fall of my 4th grade year, and my brothers and I were pulling into the parking lot of a nearby high school to pick up a car that we had left there the night before. As we pulled in, I heard the blasting of a car horn and many words being yelled that I do not feel are appropriate to include here.

“Hide underneath the seat, Sophia! DO NOT come out until I tell you to,” directed my brother.

Of course, being the curious 9-year-old that I was, I just had to peer out of the window to see what was going on. I was absolutely flabbergasted as I looked out to see a man holding a literal kitchen knife—like the one your mother would use to cut up vegetables—penetrating the abdomen of another man. Obviously, I was absolutely aghast and tried with all my might to block out the reality of the situation while my brother called 911.

I walked away from that encounter with thousands of questions as to why that man was doing what he was doing. The man’s name was Jerry. The police never revealed to us any more information, although I still sometimes try to Google the incident just to see if I can find out anything more. I wanted to learn all I could about Jerry and people similar to him.

One day I came across a story similar to Jerry’s. A man named Mamoru Takuma killed 8 people at a school in Japan with a kitchen knife. No, Jerry did not murder the man he stabbed, but he did use the same weapon, so there was clearly some overlap.

From that point forward, I became mesmerized by any story I heard on the news covering crimes, murder mystery novels, and crime shows. I’m sure all of you have a show that you could watch a thousand times and never get bored of. For me, that show is Criminal Minds.

To give a summary: Criminal Minds is a show that follows the Behavioral Analysis Unit of the FBI, and takes viewers on a 40-minute thrill-ride through the process of catching a killer.

Out of the 254 episodes that CBS has produced of the show, there are hundreds of overlaps and distinct references to some of the world’s most famous serial killers. From Jeffrey Dahmer to Ted Bundy, Jack the Ripper to the Zodiac KillerCriminal Minds covers them all, and I can’t wait to dive deep into the minds of these notorious killers with you all.

So if you’re like me and fascinated by crime and mystery, strap in, this blog will be perfect for you. And if you’re easily spooked or creeped out by topics like this, stay with me. I cannot guarantee you won’t get frightened, but you will surely be entertained.

Stay tuned, catch up on your Criminal Minds, and I will see you all soon.