Leicester scientist lends expertise to new Jack the Ripper book

Bestselling crime writer Patricia Cornwell is due to release Ripper: The Secret Life of Walter Sickert on 28 February, a comprehensive and intriguing exposé of one of the world’s most chilling cases of serial murder—and the police force that failed to solve it.

In this book, Cornwell has collected never-before-seen archival material - including a rare mortuary photo, personal correspondence and a will with a mysterious autopsy clause.

Cornwell also consulted the expertise of Dr Turi King, Reader in Genetics and Archaeology at the University, and applied cutting edge forensic science to open an old crime to new scrutiny.

Incorporating material from Portrait of a Killer: Jack the Ripper—Case Closed published in 2002, this new edition has been revised and expanded to include eight new chapters, detailed maps and hundreds of images that bring the sinister case to life.

In October 2016, Cornwell visited the University of Leicester to give a talk as part of the Chancellor’s Distinguished Lecture Series.

During her visit, we asked Patricia about her new book, her thoughts on Ripper’s identity and how today’s advances in science could help provide answers about the case.