Richard Hawke

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Witness at the inquest of the 'Pinchin Street Torso'.

A seaman from St. Ives in Cornwall who had arrived in London in July 1889 and who had been staying at the Greenwich Hospital. He appeared on the second day of the inquest, 24th September 1889:

I came out of the hospital last Monday fortnight, and at the time had no money. I walked up to London, and knocked about the streets until 20 minutes past 4 the next morning. I then went to have a rest under the railway arch. At that time I did not know the name of the street. It was very dark at the time. I was not exactly sober. I had about three pints of beer about shutting-up time. I know the time because a policeman who was close by told me. When I entered the arch I did not see anything. I think I lay down on the right-hand side of the arch in which I slept. There was another man with me when I went in, and he was in just about the same condition. To get to the arch in which we slept we had to go through the one in which the body was found, and did not see anything there at that time. The other man with me was a seaman, and I picked him up in a publichouse somewhere near the Sailor's Home. During the night I did not see or hear any one, and I was awoke by the police.[1]

Hawke was taken into custody along with Michael Keating who had also been found under the railway arches in Pinchin Street after PC William Pennett had discovered the torso.


  1. Inquest report, The Times, 25th September 1889