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Author Topic: New Jack the Ripper?
jw
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Jack the ripper style killer on the rampage in Ipswich, England.

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BluesScale
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Except that he doesn't dessect his victims.

Sadly, serial killers tend to target women who they can approach and feel superior to - and that generally means sex workers. In a better world, serial killers would feel strongly attracted to attacking fit well armed men.

BluesScale

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Richard W
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If the women were murdered by a serial killer (as seems likely), then he does appear to be going through victims at a faster rate than usual. Three - possibly five, as two more women are missing - within the space of about a month and a half.

It wasn't a good weekend for Ipswich police - as well as the bodies of prostitutes that keep turning up, three people were shot (one fatally) and one person stabbed at a local nightclub on Saturday night. Because of the other murders, that incident barely even made the news. (edit) That might not be true; I didn't actually watch the local TV news. But when I heard about it and tried to find more information online, I could only find a passing reference in a story about Ipswich's reaction to the murders of the women.

One thing that I found shocking after the second body was found, and the possibility of a serial killer was raised, was that early reports wondered if these murders were linked to the other six or eight unsolved murders of prostitutes in East Anglia over the last 15 years... it's not a safe job...

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Dara bhur gCara
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quote:
Originally posted by BluesScale:
Except that he doesn't dessect his victims.



Or stab them. In fact, there's no parallel between either the Jack the Ripper cases or the Yorkshire cases, except that the victims so far seem to have been sex workers, like many of Jack the Ripper/ Peter Sutcliffe's victims.

I dislike the lazy use of the 'Ripper' terminology to describe these horrendous crimes. In the first instance, because there are no real similarities in MO, and secondly, because I fear that the comparison of these crimes leads to a mindset that brutal murder is just a risk that sex workers have to put up with.

Certainly, in the past, the police have not investigated attacks on sex workers with the same rigour that they have investigated other murders.

This article claims that there have been at least 51 murders of sex workers in the UK since 1990, and that the police have often been very unsympathetic towards crimes against prostitutes:

quote:
In one horrifying case a half-naked street sex worker ran through the streets of south London after escaping from a customer who had raped and attempted to strangle her. Police officers witnessed her running through the streets in a distressed state and followed her to a local crack house, where she sought refuge. Officers then raided the crack house but ignored requests to gather forensic evidence from the woman.

In another case, a street sex worker wanted to report an attempted rape. There was a warrant out for her arrest, so a support worker called the local police station, asking if it could be temporarily waived so that she could report the attack. The police refused.

There does need to be a paradigm shift in the way in which the police respond to violent crime against sex workers. Perhaps these recent murders will act as the impetus to change that.

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Cold DecEmbra Brings The Sleet
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Apparently there is now a suspension on police action against soliciting and other prostitution-related crimes in order to get women to come forward - it was pointed out that a lot of these women are on ASBOs, and that an admission of breach could mean an instant jail sentence...

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The Pikey Snow Queen
The First USA Noel


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Ipswich-chow

ETA: Does that count as a chow if no-one responded to the original topic?

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BluesScale
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By the way, I can spell dissect when I have had some sleep and am not off sick with a bug.

It actually makes very little sense to prosecute sex workers for being sex workers. The normal penalty is a fine. These are sex workers. How are they going to pay? By working. Effectively, the government becomes their pimp.

I am rather sympathetic to the plight of people who are in the sex trade. It has to be a horrible and self-destructive job for many. It is certainly a very dangerous one. Even erotic dancers will have had their share of problems and they are in a well policed area. Solo prostitutes must expect beatings and rape not because this is in any way what they deserve but because that is what happens on societies underbelly. I cant help wondering if it is time to do as Nevada, the Netherlands and Australia have done and have it organised and regulated.

Blues

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Llewtrah
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quote:
Originally posted by BluesScale:
Except that he doesn't dessect his victims.

Sadly, serial killers tend to target women who they can approach and feel superior to - and that generally means sex workers. In a better world, serial killers would feel strongly attracted to attacking fit well armed men.

I don't know whether it's the superiority thing. A few might feel that they are cleansing the streets of vermin, but in the main part it is very easy to pick up a prostitute. Unlike a date, they generally don't want to know who you are, where you live, your phone number etc. They just want to negotiate the fee and the location.

AIUI, many of those working the streets just want quick turnover (either to get money fast or so they can go home sooner to their kids). They can't afford to be choosy and that makes them easy targets. From watching some of the crime shows, gay guys picked up from clubs for one night stands are equally easy targets.

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Victoria J
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quote:
Originally posted by Richard W:
It wasn't a good weekend for Ipswich police - as well as the bodies of prostitutes that keep turning up, three people were shot (one fatally) and one person stabbed at a local nightclub on Saturday night. Because of the other murders, that incident barely even made the news. (edit) That might not be true; I didn't actually watch the local TV news. But when I heard about it and tried to find more information online, I could only find a passing reference in a story about Ipswich's reaction to the murders of the women.

That is a bit alarming - Ipswich could end up like Hackney. A place where murder doesn't always make the front page news of the local borough paper ...

quote:
Originally posted by The Pikey Snow Queen:
Ipswich-chow

ETA: Does that count as a chow if no-one responded to the original topic?

Yep. I think it is a lost cause, but you were still first and thoroughly deserve to chow jw.

You should have chosen a more sensationalist title [Wink]

Victoria J

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Llewtrah
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quote:
Originally posted by BluesScale:
It actually makes very little sense to prosecute sex workers for being sex workers. The normal penalty is a fine. These are sex workers. How are they going to pay? By working. Effectively, the government becomes their pimp.

AIUI, it is legal to charge money for sex. Soliciting, kerbcrawling, living off immoral earnings and running a bawdy house are illegal. Nowadays it is okay for 2 sex workers to share premises for safety (the old definition of a brothel was a premises used by 2 or more prostitutes).

Just legalise it and make it taxable and make health checks mandatory. Persuade men to use only registered prostitutes.

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The Pikey Snow Queen
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quote:
Originally posted by Victoria J:
[/qb]Yep. I think it is a lost cause, but you were still first and thoroughly deserve to chow jw.

You should have chosen a more sensationalist title [Wink] [/QB]

Yeah, but then Dara might tell me off! [Wink]

Did anyone else notice they cancelled a programme about prostitution on channel four last night?

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jw
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by Victoria J:

quote:
Originally posted by The Pikey Snow Queen:
Ipswich-chow

ETA: Does that count as a chow if no-one responded to the original topic?

Yep. I think it is a lost cause, but you were still first and thoroughly deserve to chow jw.

Yes, Pikey, I'll take it on the chin.

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Victoria J
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I did see the original thread - I didn't respond because so much of the discussion around this case (and any similar) is so disturbing. Firstly there is the sense that it is all rather exciting, a real life thriller more or less (and much as this disgusts me I also understand it because I am a big fan of fictional murder mysteries etc). Secondly there is a real sense of exaggerated fear and personal risk, one of my colleagues yesterday kept going on about how she might be at risk if she unknowly walked down a street frequented by prostitutes. Given we are not in Ipswich, and if she was surrounded by prostitutes she would be the one target unwilling to just get in a car with someone, I can't truly worry about her [Roll Eyes]

Having started to post to the thread I think I will hang around and give my 4 pence worth (I add inflation because I am always so long winded).

The case this reminded me off was Anthony Hardy. (I have a particular interst in the case because I used to have a client who had been his girlfriend, and because I was working in Camden when they re-allocated the house he had commited the murders in). No moral crusade there, he just murdered the women he could get near to I believe.

It was a particularly worrying case because (a) he was receiving psychiatric care while he was murdering people, and (b) he had earlier had police at his house following the death of a prostitute - but that had been found to be an accidental death.

It is hard to believe anyone would suddenly start killing this many people this fast without a lot of warning signs. And even though the police appear to be taking it seriously, and not waiting (like the Peter Suttcliffe case) until a "decent" women gets murdered *[that is sarcasm in case anyone wonders !] it is hard not to believe that one of the reasons noone noticed warning signs is because no one pays much attention to the occasional murdered prostitute or to violent rape and attacks of prostitutes.

The example someone above gave (sorry - can't now remember who) of a prostitute given no opportunity to report rape and attempted strangulation is particularly worrying. The sort of person who would do that is surely the sort of person who sooner or later will strangle women.

*It would be nice to think that the difference indicates that more consideration is given to to women who work as prostitutes and they are no longer considered worthless, but as a confirmed cynic I can't help wondering if the difference is partly that in previous cases killers have started by killing prostitutes and then moved on to killing random women.

And STILL they warn women to stay of the streets. [Roll Eyes] (I could understand warning the prostitutes against not working, though it is obviously unlikely that will have any effect, but they appear to be warning all women to stay safely at home where no doubt they belong.

ETA - most of the post, clumsy button pressing.

Victoria J.

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Snafu
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2 more confirmed dead.

Why is the term 'sex worker' now being used more regularly than 'prostitute'? Today is the first time I've noticed it happening (on the radio and in the papers).

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Dara bhur gCara
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quote:
Originally posted by Snafu:
2 more confirmed dead.

Why is the term 'sex worker' now being used more regularly than 'prostitute'? Today is the first time I've noticed it happening (on the radio and in the papers).

It seems to be the term that sex workers/activists for sex workers prefer. Well, that or "Women Involved In Prostitution." Though, in something of an NAACP style, the "union" for sex workers is called the English Collective of Prostitutes.

There's a grey area surrounding "prostitute," really. Though terms like "vice girl," "call girl," or "whore" are right out, in terms of acceptability in polite society.

Edit: I would guess, though that "Prostitute" is seen as dehumanising, whereas "Sex Worker" or "Woman Involved in Prostitution" both emphasise that the Prostitute is a person first and foremost. This may seem like unnecessary semantics, but after all, sex workers are routinely dehumanised, so I suppose it's fair enough.

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Richard W
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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quote:
Originally posted by Victoria J:
And STILL they warn women to stay of the streets. [Roll Eyes] (I could understand warning the prostitutes against not working, though it is obviously unlikely that will have any effect, but they appear to be warning all women to stay safely at home where no doubt they belong.

Who's "they"? This is what the police chief is quoted as saying in the latest article:

quote:
Mr Gull said no further prostitutes had been reported as missing in Ipswich, but he urged prostitutes to stay off the streets.
I've also seen general warnings to stay out of the "red light" area around Portman Road.

This is a pretty unusual rate for a serial killer, isn't it? The first woman went missing on October 30th - that's five murders in less than a month and a half... If he tries to keep this up, then either he's going to have to look for different victims or he'll be caught quite soon.

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Snafu
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quote:
It seems to be the term that sex workers/activists for sex workers prefer. Well, that or "Women Involved In Prostitution." Though, in something of an NAACP style, the "union" for sex workers is called the English Collective of Prostitutes.

There's a grey area surrounding "prostitute," really. Though terms like "vice girl," "call girl," or "whore" are right out, in terms of acceptability in polite society.

Edit: I would guess, though that "Prostitute" is seen as dehumanising, whereas "Sex Worker" or "Woman Involved in Prostitution" both emphasise that the Prostitute is a person first and foremost. This may seem like unnecessary semantics, but after all, sex workers are routinely dehumanised, so I suppose it's fair enough.

So it's akin to the stripper/dancer thing?

I thought it might've been because it's considered more acceptable to use 'sex worker' rather than 'prostitute', but seeing both terms used in the same reports made me wonder why they didn't stick to one or the other.

Maybe 'prostitute' will be completlety ushered out of 'polite society' in the next ten years? I must say though, I think it is a matter of unnecesessary semantics.

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Llewtrah
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I think it's because, historically, prostitute implies intercourse. Sex worker encompasses a wider range of sexual services. Even within prostitution there is a hierarchy (or should that be a whorarchy?) relating to those who perform oral, Greek, vaginal or hand-job, and even riskier, those who who do it without protection. Some sex workers offer non-penetrative specialist services e.g. golden showers or allowing the punter to watch the sex worker masturbate while he does the same. Some do threesomes with another girl present etc.

Many years back, via the dole office I found out how much the local girls charged for various acts. Many of the girls claim dole and benefits because their income is not declarable for taxation - this made for interesting conversations when waiting to see the dole advisor every 2 weeks.

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Victoria J
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quote:
Originally posted by Richard W:
quote:
Originally posted by Victoria J:
And STILL they warn women to stay of the streets. [Roll Eyes] (I could understand warning the prostitutes against not working, though it is obviously unlikely that will have any effect, but they appear to be warning all women to stay safely at home where no doubt they belong.

Who's "they"? This is what the police chief is quoted as saying in the latest article:

quote:
Mr Gull said no further prostitutes had been reported as missing in Ipswich, but he urged prostitutes to stay off the streets.
I've also seen general warnings to stay out of the "red light" area around Portman Road.

This is a pretty unusual rate for a serial killer, isn't it? The first woman went missing on October 30th - that's five murders in less than a month and a half... If he tries to keep this up, then either he's going to have to look for different victims or he'll be caught quite soon.

"Who's they ?" is an interesting question - now I think about it I am not clear whether this is coming from the media or the police. I was thinking of the way the TV news reports keep ending with something along the lines of "and police are advising women to stay off the streets". Definitely women generally, not prostitutes, or even "the women" which could be taken to mean the women working on the streets in the area. I have no idea whether it is an accurate quote of a police statement though, or the media trying to imply a wider danger than actually exists.

quote:
Originally posted by Llewtrah:
Just legalise it and make it taxable and make health checks mandatory. Persuade men to use only registered prostitutes.

I don't think you'll have much luck with the second half - after all no one has been able to pursuade the men not to act illegally now. And for some men there would be less attraction if it were not illicit, and if the women were less vulnerable.

I would be very wary of legalising prostituion. I have certainly read articles (sadly not able to immeidately locate anything online - this was quite a while ago, and I think I might run into problems if I searched based on some of the details I remember...) that suggested that legalised prostitution in Holland had done much less to solve the problems involved with the sex trade than often suggested. The prostitutes working in the legalised brothels are relatively healthy and safe as proponents of legalisation suggest - but with these standards the most desperate women are kept from entering the legal brothels. And they are left working outside the legalalised system with the safeguards, and the only things they can offer that the regulated brothels can't are ridiculously cheap prices and unsafe sex. (Truly horrifying to think there are men who will pay for unsafe sex with these women, when one reason they might be barred from working in legal brothels is being HIV positive...)

Legalised prostitution involves different women. The truly desperate, and the obviously drug addicted, can't work legally so it doesn't solve any of the problems facing those women. None of the women the reporters have been talking to in Ipswich would be likely to be working in legal brothels...if they were "acceptable" for the brothels they would proabably be able to be in a different line of work right now. (Similarly the prostitutes "union" etc. is never linked to the women who are addicted/desperate but always to the small minority who have greater choice).

I would decriminalise prostitution and increase the penalty for the men paying for sex. I know that this wouldn't make the women safer (they will work in less safe areas to avoid arrest, but will also work less safely if the men will not go to areas where they face arrest) but it would at least mean an end to punishing them for the risks they take.

Victoria J

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Llewtrah
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The "Suffolk Strangler" (as papers in the region now call him - more accurate than ripper at least) might be part of a longer term series of killings in Suffolk and Norfolk. Police suggest that he might now be losing control.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/6172499.stm

quote:
Among the unsolved cases being looked at for possible links is the murder of Natalie Pearman, 16, who was strangled in Norwich in 1992. Mandy Duncan, 26, of Woodbridge, Suffolk, vanished in 1993 while working as a prostitute in Ipswich. Kellie Pratt, 29, disappeared from the red light area of Norwich in 2000 and Michelle Bettles, 22, was found strangled three days after disappearing from the same area of the city in 2002. Her body was found in woods near Scarning and no-one has been charged over her death.
quote:
Truly horrifying to think there are men who will pay for unsafe sex with these women, when one reason they might be barred from working in legal brothels is being HIV positive..
The punters who want unsafe sex are likely to have HIV too (from previous unsafe sex).

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Zachary Fizz
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Am I being naive, or does anyone else find it surprising that Ipswich even has a red light district? I wouldn't have thought that a sleepy place like Suffolk would have that sort of thing [Confused]
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Mosherette
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According to news reports this morning, it is indeed tiny, and only about 30 sex workers actually work there.

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Richard W
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I was surprised when I moved to Ipswich and heard people refer to the red light district, too.

It's not a "red light district" as such, though - it's not like there are strip clubs or porn cinemas or anything in it. It's just a couple of non-residential streets around the football stadium. The reason it's in that area seems to be that there's really not a lot there - there's the stadium, car parks for the stadium, a couple of offices and warehouse-type shops, but there's no reason why anybody would be there at night (no houses, clubs, bars) and with the car parks and stuff, presumably it's easy to find secluded spots. It's also close to the railway station, so fairly "central".

There's at least one massage parlour elsewhere in Ipswich (on a main road close to the red light area, actually) but I have no reason to think that it's anything other than what it says it is and in no way deserving of inverted commas.

quote:
Victoria J said:
... or the media trying to imply a wider danger than actually exists.

Could be... there have been several articles like this one:

Town gripped by shock and fear

Apparently there were news reports on Monday about how deserted the town centre was - I haven't noticed any difference, and it's always pretty quiet on a Monday. You can tell from the headline what the BBC article above wants to say, but half-way through you get to this part:

quote:
Busy nightlife

But some pubs and restaurants were far from empty. In fact, the town looked quite busy for a Tuesday night and many women had ventured out.

Which somewhat belies the headline.

There was an unfortunate moment on Newsnight last night - a reporter was standing outside the police cordon where the latest bodies have been found. Jeremy Paxman asked him if he'd managed to speak to any locals to get their reaction, and he said (paraphrasing) "Yes, there's actually a pub inside the police cordon. I went in there earlier and it was full of people celebrating..." He then hurriedly clarified that he meant they were celebrating Christmas parties and so on and that actually they all were really worried.

I think people are worried, but it hasn't been openly noticeable to me yet. One of my female friends has to come back from work past an area closer to the red light area, and she's apparently quite scared by it all.

(It might sound odd but I've not actually spoken to any women since the third and subsequent bodies were found...! I haven't any female colleagues at the moment, and I've not been out in the evening since Saturday. It's obviously a big topic of conversation in the office though.)

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This is all happening less than 5 minutes from my front door. I've not noticed anything unusual, though, either in terms of what I've heard and seen, or in terms of what people have been talking about.

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seriously , everyone on here , just trys to give someone crap about something they do !! , its shitting me to tears.

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Richard W
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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I just found out that the shooting I mentioned happened on Saturday morning (i.e. Friday night), rather than Saturday night as I'd assumed. That was the night of our work Christmas meal, and at the time I was in quite a similar nightclub about 5 minutes from the shooting... just luck that it wasn't the same one, really!
Posts: 8725 | From: Ipswich - the UK's 9th Best Place to Sleep! | Registered: Feb 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
trollface
The Bills of St. Mary's


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Which club was it?

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seriously , everyone on here , just trys to give someone crap about something they do !! , its shitting me to tears.

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trollface
The Bills of St. Mary's


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Never mind, I've just looked it up. Zest. Which is maybe 7 minutes from my front door. Great neighbourhood.

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seriously , everyone on here , just trys to give someone crap about something they do !! , its shitting me to tears.

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Llewtrah
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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quote:
Originally posted by Zachary Fizz:
Am I being naive, or does anyone else find it surprising that Ipswich even has a red light district? I wouldn't have thought that a sleepy place like Suffolk would have that sort of thing [Confused]

Ipswich has men. Men need sex. In same cases this requires the man to pay for sex (for reasons I will not explore at this juncture). To meet this demand there will be women willing to take his money in return for giving him sex. Yes, even in Ipswich there will be men and women for whom sex involves a financial transaction (I realise that wining, dining and flowers can be seen as a financial transaction).

Chelmsford is probably sleepier than Ipswich. We have a small red light area (Moulsham St near Hamlet Rd). My sisters and my mother have all been propositioned while waiting to cross Moulsham Street in that vicinity! Southend-on-Sea's red light area is Yorke Road. My colleague used to have a great view of the prostitute who used the bedroom of the house opposite his study! She used to wave to him while the client was humping her.

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Llewtrah's Soapbox

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Richard W
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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quote:
Originally posted by trollface:
Never mind, I've just looked it up. Zest. Which is maybe 7 minutes from my front door. Great neighbourhood.

Yep - the shooting was in Zest. I hear that the supposed "stabbing" victim was actually somebody who'd been shot, combined with confused reports. So it was four people shot, one fatally. (Given I got my original information from a homeless guy who'd been sleeping under the bridge next to Zest at the time, and had woken up to find himself in the middle of a murder inquiry, that's not bad accuracy.)

The club I was in was Liquid / Envy. Which I would guess is 12 minutes from your front door (depending on traffic). But at least nobody was shot there last weekend...!

(Where did you look it up, by the way? I've been able to find very little independent information.)

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trollface
The Bills of St. Mary's


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quote:
Originally posted by Richard W:
The club I was in was Liquid / Envy. Which I would guess is 12 minutes from your front door (depending on traffic). But at least nobody was shot there last weekend...!



Actually, I'd say probably 7-10. For both, I go straight up Portman Road until I get to CSV, then cross the road and go down the ally for the Cinema/Liquid, or carry straight on up for Hollywoods (no matter what it changes it's name to, it'll always be Hollywoods).

quote:
(Where did you look it up, by the way? I've been able to find very little independent information.)
I did a google news search for "Ipswich shooting". I got this. This bit makes me laugh:

quote:
Up to 800 people had attended a special Funky House and Old School music event at the club where garage style music was played.
You can just hear how not with-it the person writing the report is. It's like listening to your Dad talk about it.

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seriously , everyone on here , just trys to give someone crap about something they do !! , its shitting me to tears.

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Dara bhur gCara
As Shepherds Watched Their Flocks Buy Now Pay Later


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The Daily Mail thinks these murders are Kate Moss and Pete Doherty's fault. No, really.

quote:
Some of the young girls who walk the streets are of an addictive personality who would have destroyed themselves with alcohol or some other substance had crack cocaine or heroin not been available.

But the great majority of these young women, and of so many of their contemporaries in trouble with the law, have become addicted to the sort of drugs which have been glamorised by sections of the media, and by the stars of rock music, television and the fashion industry.

What kind of message does the shallow and irresponsible fashion industry give out when, a year after those grainy pictures appeared of Kate Moss snorting cocaine, she is earning more than ever and was named Model of the Year at the British Fashion Awards?

Pete Doherty, her rock star boyfriend, is another case in point. Only this month, he was had up (yet again) for possession and abuse of Class A drugs.



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This wrinkle in time, I can't give it no credit, I thought about my space and it really got me down.
Got me so down, I got me a headache, My heart is crammed in my cranium and it still knows how to pound


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Tarquin Farquart
The First USA Noel


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The Telegraph have a typically sensitive take on it

quote:
Amid the welter of probation officers, right-on policemen, social workers, outreach workers, penologists, psychologists, do-gooders and bleeding hearts I soon realised I had only one ally in the cause of understanding less and condemning more.
Oh dear.

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I shall baffle you with cabbages and rhinoceroses in the kitchen and incessant quotations from "Now We Are Six" through the mouthpiece of Lord Snooty's giant poisoned electric head. So there!

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The Pikey Snow Queen
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by Dara bhur gCara:
The Daily Mail thinks these murders are Kate Moss and Pete Doherty's fault. No, really.


Obviously prostitution has only existed since Kate Moss started snorting coke. I'm surprised it hasn't been blamed on illegal immigrants, that's more the Daily Mail's style.

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Brosandi. Hendumst hringi
Hldumst hendur
Allur heimurinn skr
Nema stendur

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Lainie
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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"Look at that Kate Moss! She has such a glamorous life, modeling, going to fancy parties, snorting coke, fighting with her drug-addict boyfriend. I want to be just like her. That settles it, then: I'm going to head down to the corner and start turning tricks."

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How homophobic do you have to be to have penguin gaydar? - Lewis Black

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The Pikey Snow Queen
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by Tarquin Farquart:
The Telegraph have a typically sensitive take on it

quote:
Amid the welter of probation officers, right-on policemen, social workers, outreach workers, penologists, psychologists, do-gooders and bleeding hearts I soon realised I had only one ally in the cause of understanding less and condemning more.
Oh dear.
quote:
Since drugs crime is the cause not just of most prostitution, but of between 70 and 80 per cent of all crime in this country
Anyone want to ask him for a site?

Pikey "I hope you choke on my bleeding heart" Queen

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Brosandi. Hendumst hringi
Hldumst hendur
Allur heimurinn skr
Nema stendur

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