John Thain

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Police Constable John Thain, 96J.

Witness at Mary Ann Nichols' inquest.

Born 1854 in Winston, Suffolk. Married to Elizabeth (b.1854) with one daughter, Lydia (b.1890). In 1881 he was listed as a Police Officer on the docks at Woolwich.

Thain's beat took him along Brady Street and he passed the junction with Buck's Row every thirty minutes. At 3.45am, 31st August 1888, PC Thain was signalled by PC John Neil and went to find him standing by Nichols' body. He was sent to fetch Dr Rees Ralph Llewellyn and on his return found that Neil had been joined by two workmen.

Thain helped to put the body on the ambulance and noted that the back of her dress was saturated with blood, which covered his hands. He stayed at the murder site whilst the body was taken to the mortuary, awaiting the arrival of Inspector John Spratling. He also witnessed the washing away of the blood by Emma Green's son.

Afterwards, he searched Essex Wharf, the Great Eastern and East London railways, as well as the District Railway as far as Thomas Street, but found no weapon or other traces of blood. However, he was not involved in any house-to-house enquiries in Buck's Row itself.