Manhunt – The Yorkshire Ripper



Yorkshire Ripper (Pic: Daily Mirror)


Daily Mirror assistant editor recalls covering the Ripper murders as a young reporter

It began with a murder that went mostly unremarked – but it was the start of a nightmare that would last years and terrify millions of women across the nation.

The body of prostitute Emily Jackson, 42, a mum of three, was found on a cold January morning in 1976 by workmen in a derelict site in Leeds.

It was linked to the murder of another streetwalker Wilma McCann. The connection sparked the biggest manhunt in British history and the emergence of one of the world’s most notorious killers.

Later, as the number of bodies rose, public concern turned to panic and the north of England fell under the fear of the man dubbed the Yorkshire Ripper.

For six long years, women were terrified to walk alone. Children told each other tales of the monster stalking the streets. Stories did the rounds in pubs of the victims’ horribly ­mutilated bodies. Police seemed powerless.