Home » What Happens to “The Ripper’s” Wife Sonia Sutcliffe??

What Happens to “The Ripper’s” Wife Sonia Sutcliffe??

by YourDailyHunt.com
What Happens to “The Ripper’s” Wife Sonia Sutcliffe

The Ripper, originally titled Once Upon a Time in Yorkshire, is a Netflix documentary about the heinous crimes of Peter Sutcliffe, a lorry driver from Bingley who was accused of killing 13 women and attempting to assassinate seven more between 1975 and 1980. The Netflix production mainly concentrates on the investigation; however, the fourth and final episode gives insight into the subject’s personal life and his marriage.

Sonia Sutcliffe, his wife, is rarely seen or heard from, but she played a crucial role in Peter’s life until his passing last month. Sonia stood by him throughout his trial and remains in their residence to this day.

Family Background

Sonia’s parents were post-war refugees from Czechoslovakia and Poland who ended up in Britain.

They were assigned to a council house in Bradford, where Sonia and her older sister Marianne were raised, about seven miles away from Sutcliffe’s home in Bingley.

Because English was very seldom spoken at home, Sonia developed an unusual accent to her Yorkshire schoolmates.

Bohdan, her father, was an intelligent, cultured man who preferred that his daughters practise the piano over watching television.

Sonia and Marianne could only get to the Royal Standard pub on Valentine’s Day 1966 by lying to him.

Sonia was only fifteen years old at the time.

Marriage to Sutcliffe

On August 10, 1974, Sonia married Peter William Sutcliffe, the day before her 24th birthday and two years after she started receiving schizophrenia treatment. When she realised she could never have children because of previous miscarriages, she returned to school to become a teacher.

Gordon Burn, a writer, later described her marriage to her husband as domineering, with Sonia being willing to slap him down “like a naughty schoolboy.” Sonia stayed married to her husband and continued to reside in their Bradford matrimonial home after he was found guilty of multiple women’s murders in 1981.

They split up around 1989 and divorced in July 1994 due to unreasonable behaviour. Journalist Barbara Jones spoke with Sonia frequently and described her as “the most irritating, strangest and coldest person I’ve ever met. She’s so incredibly prickly and demanding”.

Her life as Peter Sutcliffe’s wife

When Sonia was only fifteen years old, she first met Peter in a nearby pub. They became friends and spent their time going for walks and watching TV together with their respective families. The couple engaged in 1967 and married on August 10, 1974. After the wedding, the happy couple went on their honeymoon in Paris before settling in at Sonia’s parents’ house to save money for their first home. By 1977, they had shifted out and established themselves on their own.

Peter was employed as a truck driver. As Sonia lost three pregnancies, the Peter Sutcliffe family was dealing one blow after another. Peter also stated that his wife was badgering him. She was also a neat freak.

Did Sonia Sutcliffe know about what her husband was doing?

According to reports, Sonia was completely unaware that her husband was the Yorkshire Ripper. Peter Sutcliffe claimed in an interview that she was unaware of it because he was never covered in blood and there wasn’t any reason for her to be aware.

In the police station, Peter Sutcliffe allegedly told Sonia that he was liable for the killings of the 13 women. “It’s me, love.” he is said to have said, ” I’m the Yorkshire Ripper. I killed all those women.”

Sonia, who was reportedly shocked by his confession, reportedly asked Peter, “What on earth did you do that for? A sparrow has the right to live.”

Even after her shock, Sonia remained by her husband’s side throughout the trial.

Libel case against Private Eye

Sutcliffe filed a libel lawsuit in May 1989 against the satirical magazine Private Eye. She chose to file a lawsuit just before the six-year time period for such actions was set to end. The case focused on a January 1981 article in which she described her attempts to strike financial agreements with newspapers and stated that she was trying to generate revenue from her husband’s crimes. Private Eye agreed at the time that there were two mistakes in the news piece, but the complainant (Sutcliffe) declined the offer of a modification.

Sutcliffe received record libel case against the magazine on May 24 in the amount of £600,000, which is £100,000 more than the prior highest award. The editor, Ian Hislop, declared, “If that’s justice, I’m a banana,” and declared his intention to appeal immediately. The legal costs of the appeal were successfully covered by a crowd-sourced fund called “Bananaballs,” and the damages were lowered to £60,000. Sutcliffe’s other lawsuits, against the Daily Express and the Daily Star, were settled out of court.

Where is Sonia Sutcliffe now?

She has remarried to Michael Woodward. Michael, 60, is a hairdresser.

The couple married in 1997 but have lived apart for the majority of their marriage.

Sonia, who now lives in seclusion, refuses to leave the house she once shared with her murderous ex-husband.

Michael, who is now Sonia’s husband, has decided not to move into the house and instead lives alone in a flat about 15 minutes away.

She did briefly move into the apartment with her husband, but she left again in 2003. The couple has since lived apart, but they are still married.

Marianne, Sonia’s sister, once stated that Peter was and always would be “the only man in the world” for her. After Peter was transferred to Durham’s Frankland Jail in 2017, Sonia stopped paying him visits.

She is now 70 years old, and she was the first to learn of Peter’s death last month. It is believed that Sonia planned her ex-husband’s funeral.

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