Peter Sutcliffe's arrest

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On 2nd January 1981 Peter Sutcliffe was seen by the police whilst in the company of a prostitute in the "red light" area of Sheffield.

Peter Sutcliffe was arrested for theft of car number plates. The number plates on his car did not match those on the Police National Computer.

During his arrest Peter Sutcliffe was allowed to leave the immediate presence of the police officers to urinate. Whilst away from the officers Sutcliffe hid a hammer and a knife.

Some 24 hours after his arrest the arresting officer, who had been advised that Sutcliffe might be the murderer they were seeking, returned to the scene of the arrest and recovered a hammer and knife which Sutcliffe had disposed of whilst allegedly urinating nearby.

An additional knife was later recovered from the cistern of a toilet in Hammerton Road Police Station where Sutcliffe had hidden it following his arrest.

From that point onwards, although on the basis of his record card in the Millgarth incident room it might still have been possible for him to have been eliminated on accent and handwriting grounds, the finding of the hammer and the two knives prompted members of the West Yorkshire inquiry team into thinking that Sutcliffe was the man they were looking for.

Thereafter he soon began to admit the crimes with which he was subsequently charged and gave a detailed statement to the interviewing officers.