True Crime Week: Peter Sutcliffe

Happy Halloween Readers,
I put out a poll on both Twitter and Instagram asking if you guys would be interested in a true-crime week for Halloween you guys said yes so here, we are. This week I will be looking at Peter Sutcliffe, Ted Bundy, Richard Ramirez, Jeffrey Dahmer, Aileen Wuornos, John Wayne Gacy and Lizzie Borden.

Peter is the only British Serial killer I will be looking at the rest are all American. Peter was dubbed the "Yorkshire Ripper" by the press because he killed prostitutes and he mutilated his victims as Jack the Ripper had done before him. No copyright infringement is intended the photo is for educational purposes.   

Peter had a  typical childhood, aside from some minor hiccups. Peter was a loner and he left school aged fifteen and had a series of menial jobs one that is always pointed out is that he was a gravedigger on two separate occasions in his youth.

Peter carried out his first attack on a woman on July 5, 1975. Throughout his murdering spree, Peter murdered 13 women and viciously attacked seven other victims who managed  to survive his violent assaults, leaving them with long-lasting psychological, mental, and physical scars. Many of the people Peter assaulted and killed had been involved in prostitution, and he felt as though he was doing some sort of public service by viciously beating and stabbing sex workers.

From 1979 until Peter's arrest, British police searched more than 20,000 homes with a task force comprised of around 250,000 people to catch the Ripper. Peter was able to get away with killing for several different reasons, including a disturbed man who contacted police, claiming to be the person responsible for the murders. This took attention and valuable resources away from where they were needed.

The man, who was eventually dubbed "Wearside Jack," sent two letters to the authorities and another to a newspaper, as well as a tape, convincing the police he was the person who had committed the killings. Using the information collected from the letters and the tape, officers focused on tracking down a man with a Wearside accent, causing them to eliminate any suspects who didn't have a Northeast accent.

On Jan. 2, 1981, two police officers approached Peter. The check by a probationary constable revealed his car had false number plates and Peter was arrested and transferred to Dewsbury Police Station. 

At Dewsbury, Peter was questioned in relation to the Yorkshire Ripper case as he matched the known physical characteristics. The next day police returned to the scene of the arrest and discovered a knife, hammer and rope Peter had discarded when he briefly slipped away from the police after telling them he was "bursting for a pee". After two days of interrogation, Peter finally confessed that he was the Yorkshire Ripper and spent the next day describing his many crimes in detail.

Peter was found guilty on all 13 counts and seven accounts of attempted murder and given 20 concurrent life sentences. Peter spent approximately 30 years at Broadmoor hospital after being diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia in 1984. Broadmoor is the toughest psychiatric hospital for the criminally insane in England. Sutcliffe is reported to have been transferred from Broadmoor to Frankland Prison (High Security) in Durham in 2016.

L x