A new ITV documentary about the ’70s serial killer, the Yorkshire Ripper, is showing on ITV.
The documentary explores the murders and investigations that unfold with a look at Wearside Jack, who posed as Peter Sutcliffe’s killer before he was later arrested.
Who is Wearside Jack?
Wearside Jack is the nickname given to John Samuel Humble, a 68-year-old British man posing as a Yorkshire Ripper.
In a series of phone calls and letters, he caused a diversion in the police manhunt to find the real Yorkshire Ripper, Peter Sutcliffe.
He sent a message taped in Wearside’s voice and three letters that would mock the authority for failing to catch him.
The recorded text prompts the investigative team to leave West Yorkshire, home of the real killer, Peter, thereby prolonging his assault on women.
More than 25 years after these events occurred, a fragment from one of Humble’s envelopes was found through his DNA, leading to his arrest in 2006.
What was Wearside Jack’s hoax in the Yorkshire Ripper case?
Between March 1978 and June 1979, Humble sent three letters claiming to be the Yorkshire Ripper.
The first letter was written to Detective George Oldfield.
In the letter, Humble detailed how proud he was of the murders he claimed he committed were the Yorkshire Ripper.
He went on to describe the girls who had been murdered and stated that the police should “Warn not to go out because I feel it’s happening again (another murder)”.
In June 1979, Humble sent a cassette to Assistant Director Constable Oldfield, where he introduced himself only as “Jack” and claimed responsibility for the Ripper murder.
In the tape, he says, “I’m Jack. I see you’re still out of luck catching me. I have the greatest respect for you, George, but God! You can’t catch me now any more. four years ago when I started. I think your boys are letting you down, George. They can’t be much nicer, can they?”
Sutcliffe denied having any connection to the letters or the audio recordings.
Then the police started focusing on Humble’s Wearside accent.
Together with voice analysts, they came to the conclusion that the voice is distinctive to the Castletown area of Sunderland.
This resulted in 40,000 men being investigated to no avail.
While West Yorkshire Police were investigating the ringleaders, Sutcliffe murdered three more women and assaulted two others.
It was only after Sutcliffe’s confession that Wearside Jack was proven to be a hoax.
How long has Wearside Jack been in jail?
On March 21, 2006, Humble was sentenced to eight years in prison.
In July of the same year, he filed an appeal against his conviction, which was overruled in October 2006.
Humble was released from prison in 2009 after serving a four-year sentence and given a new identity.
In August 2019, it was reported that he passed away at his home in South Shields on July 30 from heart failure and the effects of alcoholism.
https://www.the-sun.com/news/4754788/who-was-wearside-jack/ Who is Wearside Jack?