Researchers believe they have finally solved the mystery of the identity of Jack the Ripper thanks to a breakthrough in DNA testing that links a Polish barber to the gruesome murders that took place during the 1800s.
Until now the identity of the infamous serial killer has been unknown but a team of experts went back to re-examine a blood-stained shawl found at one of the murder scenes and found it contained DNA from both the victim and the Ripper — now believed to be 23-year-old Aaron Kosminski, according to The Sun.
The shocking discovery was made by researchers at Liverpool John Moores University, who published their findings in the Journal of Forensic Sciences.
"We describe for the first time systematic, molecular level analysis of the only surviving physical evidence linked to the Jack the Ripper murders," authors wrote. "Finding both matching profiles in the same piece of evidence enhances the statistical probability of its overall identification and reinforces the claim that the shawl is authentic."
The shawl in question belonged to Catherine Eddowes, whom the Ripper butchered on Sept. 30, 1888, in Whitechapel, The Sun reported. The item of clothing eventually landed up in the hands of Russell Edwards, who bought it at auction in 2007.
The DNA testing results suggest that the Ripper had brown hair and eyes, which matches eyewitness reports from the time and puts Kosminski at the center of the murders.
"To our knowledge, this is the most advanced study to date regarding this case," the authors noted.
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