A scant twelve days after the brutal slaying of Mary Jane Kelly in her room at Miller's Court, news came of another prostitute found slain and mutilated in an East End boarding house. When police arrived on the scene at a boarding house on George Street in Spitalfields, they discovered a false alarm, of a sort. No woman had been killed, although one had been attacked. Annie Farmer, 40, was taken to the George Street house by a man she met on Commercial Road. The man wore a dark suit and black hat, and had a dark moustache. He was approximately 36 years old, and about 5'6" in height.
Men in the house's kitchen reported that Farmer came down the stairs, partially unclothed and bleeding from a wound on her throat. It was later determined that Farmer had previously met the man a year before. Detective William Thicke and others searched for the man to no avail. Witnesses who provided the description testified that they saw him later but that he eluded them. A gun-wielding man was arrested but proved to be an amateur detective trying to capture the man.