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General Sir Charles Warren, GCMG, KCB, FRS, was a British officer of the Royal Engineers and police chief. He was Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police in London at the time of the Jack the Ripper killings in 1888, but his failure in the investigation forced his resignation. He has a minor presence during Sherlock Holmes' investigation of the crimes in Dust and Shadow.

Dust and Shadow[]

Sir Charles is first mentioned when Holmes and Watson visit George Lusk to ask him to form a Vigilance Committee for Whitechapel in the hopes of preventing further killings. Lusk immediately takes to the idea due to his dislike for Sir Charles' policing methods, describing him as a "ruffian" who "has trodden upon the poor... for long enough." (This dislike, evidently, stemmed from Sir Charles' handling of the "Bloody Sunday" riot in Trafalgar Square the previous year.)

Sir Charles appears in person following the murders of Elizabeth Stride and Catharine Eddows. With Holmes injured in a brief struggled with the Ripper the previous night, Watson is investigating the scene of Eddows' killing alone with Inspector Lestrade. They receive word that a message has been found on nearby Goulston Street along with a bloody scrap of Eddows' apron, apparently used by the killer to clean his knife. The message says "The Juwes are the men that will not be blamed for nothing", and is written in chalk. Sir Charles, arriving on scene, orders the writing to be removed, as he fears its anti-Semitic message could provoke a disturbance. Watson and Lestrade attempt to argue with him that the message, as a clue, should be photographed for examination. This only angers Sir Charles, however, and he forces Lestrade to personally erase the message. Mary Ann Monk manages to copy down the inscription to show to Holmes during the argument. After thanking Lestrade for his assistance in stomping down social unrest, Sir Charles leaves. Holmes is later furious that Sir Charles destroyed the evidence, preventing him from examining the handwriting.

Mycroft Holmes later mentions Sir Charles while visiting Sherlock. He says the unrest is very troubling, and that there are calls for his dismissal in the papers. Holmes gripes to Mycroft over Sir Charles' actions regarding the graffiti, to which Mycroft sympathizes with his frustrations but says Holmes hasn't considered the political dimensions of the case.

Sir Charles tenders his resignation from the police force right before the murder of Mary Jane Kelly on November 8, 1888. Holmes, who has finally targeted Edward Bennett, a constable, as the most likely suspect, says that the revelation would be a major blow to Scotland Yard, from which Sir Charles has already resigned, whom the case, and Bennett, have already ruined.

Trivia[]

  • Watson mentions that Sir Charles once attempted to relieve a hero of his, Major-General Charles Gordon, when he was surrounded by the enemy at Khartoum. Watson's admiration for Gordon is a reference to The Adventure of the Cardboard Box, where Watson hangs has a newly-framed portrait of the general on his wall.

External links[]

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