Peter Sutcliffe knew he was dying and bleated “I’m not going to make it… ” as he was wheeled out of jail to hospital.
The Yorkshire Ripper – who killed at least 13 women and attacked many more – died on Friday after being stricken by coronavirus following a heart attack.
We can reveal the 74-year-old spoke briefly while gasping for air as he was taken to hospital five days earlier.
The self-pitying beast moaned: “I’m not going to make it, I won’t be returning, I’m sorry, I’m ready to go.”
But although his last words contained the word sorry, there was no sign this was a let-up in his lifelong refusal to show remorse for his crimes.
Instead, Sutcliffe, who was obese and had diabetes and other illnesses, whined about his failing health, say sources at Frankland prison, Co Durham.
One said: “He was always complaining he was unwell and was regarded as a hypochondriac but with Covid-19 he was monitored more closely.
“He never really spoke about the murders or his past life, I’d go so far as saying that he was in denial. He was obsessed with his own death and worried about what people might say about him after he had died.”
Sources said he started to deteriorate over the summer and penned a will, leaving belongings to fellow inmates.
These included sunglasses, pens, a baseball cap, woolly hats, and a pair of slippers and a pair of Crocs.
His cell was also stacked with piles of letters from ghoulish pen-pals, including women obsessed with him.
The source added: “A lot of us who knew him believe he enjoyed the notoriety, he certainly was demanding enough to think that he should get special treatment.
“He also suffered from nightmares which seemed to get worse as his health deteriorated.
“During October he became more convinced he was going to get Covid and die. It was almost an obsession.
“He was an old man with a lot of medical problems. He moaned a lot, especially during the pandemic.”
Sutcliffe, a lorry driver, used hammers, knives and screwdrivers to butcher 13 women and tried to kill at least seven more in Yorkshire and Greater Manchester between 1975 and 1980.
He claimed God had told him to kill prostitutes and is suspected of 30 more murders and 17 more attacks.
The monster was jailed in 1981 and ordered to serve a whole life term.
Sutcliffe died at University Hospital of North Durham at 1am on Friday. He had contracted Covid-19 but, as a Jehovah’s Witness, refused to allow doctors to give him treatment.
Neil Jackson, 62, whose mother Emily, 42, was stabbed 52 times by Sutcliffe in Leeds in 1976, said: “He should have been hung 40 years ago. He’s had this cushy life in prison while we’ve had to serve a life sentence.
“He’s never shown any sympathy or remorse. He’s revelled in being notorious. It doesn’t surprise me that he was full of self pity and complaining until the end.
“He was a coward as well. He’s died without revealing how many victims are out there. I’m convinced there are more but back then there was no DNA, no CCTV, no computers, everything was paperwork.”
Tracy Browne, 59, who Sutcliffe left for dead in Silsden, West Yorks, in August 1975 when she was 14, said: “Even hell is too good for him. He doesn’t deserve a funeral – they can chuck his ashes in a cesspit for all I care. Even though the world is a poorly place, it is a little less sick without him in it.
“Even until his dying breath, he will have wanted control. He was only ever worried about his image and what people thought of him. He’s an attention seeker until the very end.
“All his victims – whether they died or survived – were real women with real lives and real families. They deserve to be remembered for who they were, not as numbers and statistics.”
One former cop claims Sutcliffe may have carried out 30 more murders and 17 more attacks. Ex-intelligence officer Chris Clark is calling for the National Crime Agency to investigate.
He said: “I have been able to link the Ripper by method, motive and opportunity to cold cases that have remained dormant for decades.
“The evidence is out there and the victims deserve better.
“I want Boris Johnson to take the lead and order a new and comprehensive inquiry into Sutcliffe.”