"When I was a little kid I was just like anybody else."
Jeffrey Lionel Dahmer was born May 21, 1960 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin to Lionel and Joyce Dahmer. At the age of 6, Dahmer was diagnosed with a double hernia. Confusion about his condition triggered his curiosity about the human body and physical examinations by strangers left him feeling exposed, a feeling that is said to have forever affected his personality.
The Dahmer family moved to Bath Township, Ohio when Jeffrey was 8 years old. There, he would spend most of his time in the woods near his house, mutilating small animals and road kill. Dahmer discovered his homosexuality at the age of 13 and had a sexual encounter with a neighborhood boy a year later, which Dahmer would later tell police he considered a mistake. Dahmer began to have strange sexual fantasies at the age of 16, one involving killing someone with a blackjack and having sex with the body.
Years of tension and disagreements culminated between Lionel and Joyce when Dahmer was 18, and they were divorced on July 24, 1978.
1. Steven Hicks, 19. June 18, 1978. Several days after his high school graduation on June 4, Dahmer borrowed his father's car and picked up hitchhiker Steven Hicks. Dahmer drove Hicks back to his home to share a few beers and some marijuana, and when Hicks asked to leave, Dahmer struck him over the head with a barbell from behind and used it to strangled him. Dahmer later told police that he had sex with the corpse. Dahmer dragged the body into a crawlspace beneath the home, but removed it several days later when it began to smell. Dahmer then cut the remains into pieces and put them into plastic bags. While driving these bags to the dump, Dahmer crossed the center line, was stopped by police, and was given a sobriety test. The officers discovered the plastic bags and became curious about the terrible smell coming from the car. Dahmer convinced the officers that the bags contained some old garbage he had forgotten to take to the dump. They let him go with a citation, and he returned home to bury the bags in his backyard. "That night in Ohio, that one impulsive night. Nothing's been normal since then. It taints your whole life. After it happened I thought that I'd just try to live as normally as possible and bury it, but things like that don't stay buried. I didn't think it would, but it does, it taints your whole life."
Lionel convinced Dahmer to try college and enrolled him at Ohio State University in the fall of 1978. Dahmer was unable to control his alcoholism he had developed in high school, and he flunked out after only one quarter. Lionel's new wife, Shari, convinced Dahmer to join the United States Army in 1979. He was stationed in Baumholder, Germany, only to be discharged in 1981 due to his constant drunkenness. Upon returning home, Dahmer dug up the remains of Steven Hicks, pounded them with a hammer, and spread them in the forest.
Although he didn't kill again until 1987, Dahmer was arrested several times. In 1981, Dahmer was arrested for public drunkenness. At this point, his father thought it best for him to move in with his grandmother, Catherine Dahmer, in West Allis, Wisconsin, which he did in 1982. That year, he was arrested after exposing himself at the Wisconsin State Fair. In 1986, he was arrested a third time after two boys accused him of masturbating in public. Dahmer claimed he was urinating and that he did not know the boys were there, and the charges were reduced.
2. Stephen Tuomi, 24. September 15, 1987. Dahmer spent the night drinking at Club 219, a gay bar, where he met Toumi. The two eventually left together to rent a room at Milwaukee's Ambassador Hotel. Dahmer slipped Toumi a cocktail with the prescription drug Halcion and awoke the next morning to find him dead. Dahmer bought a large suitcase and returned to the hotel room to stuff Toumi's body inside. He hailed a cab, the driver of which commented on the smell, and returned to his grandmother's house. There he had sex with the corpse and masturbated on it before dissecting the body and throwing it in the garbage. "After that, it all started again."
3. James Doxtator, 14. January 16, 1988. Doxtator was a male prostitute who frequently hung around gay bars. Dahmer approached him and asked him to make a video, and he agreed. Back at Dahmer's home, Doxtator was given sleeping pills in alcohol and strangled. Dahmer stripped the body of its flesh with acid and smashed the bones, which were later scattered.
4. Richard Guerrero, 23. March 24, 1988. Dahmer met Guerrero at a bar called the Phoenix and offered him money to return to his home and make a video. Once there, they had oral sex before Guerrero was drugged and strangled. Dahmer dismembered the corpse and disposed of it in the garbage.
In September of 1988, Dahmer was asked to move out when his odd hours and the stench of his "experiments" became too much for Catherine Dahmer. He moved into an apartment at 808 North 24th on September 25.
A day later, on September 26, 1988, Dahmer met Somsack Sinthasomphone, 14, near his school and offered him money to pose for pictures at Dahmer's apartment. When they arrived, Dahmer drugged Sinthasomphone and began taking pictures. Dahmer then attempted to fondle the boy, who left the apartment and returned home. When the drugs took full effect, Sinthasomphone was taken to the emergency room by his father, where it was discovered that he had overdosed. After being released from the hospital, Sinthasomphone led police to Dahmer's apartment and he was arrested at his place of employment later that night. His apartment was searched, but officers missed the photos other evidence littering his apartment. In January of 1989, Dahmer was convicted of 2nd degree sexual assault and enticing a child for immoral purposes.
5. Anthony Sears, 24. March 25, 1989. While awaiting sentencing, Dahmer met Sears at La Cage, a gay bar, and took him back to his grandmother's house, assuming the police were watching his apartment. There, they had sexual intercourse before Sears was drugged and killed. Dahmer kept only the skull as a trophy. "I took the knife and the scalp part off and peeled the flesh off the bone and kept the skull and the scalp. If I could have kept him longer, all of him, I would have."
On May 23, 1989, Dahmer was sentenced to 8 years for the two charges, which was later reduced to 1 year. He served 10 months and began a 5 year probation. After being released from prison, he moved into the now famous Apartment 213 at the Oxford Apartments, 924 N. 25th street, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
6. Raymond Smith aka Ricky Beeks, 33. May 29, 1990. Smith accompanied Dahmer to his apartment, where he was drugged and strangled. Dahmer engaged in oral sex with the corpse and kept his skull in his refrigerator as a trophy. The other bones were de-fleshed with Soilex and placed around his apartment.
7. Edward Smith, 28. June 24, 1990. Dahmer met Smith (no relation to Raymond Smith) at the Pheonix bar. They went back to Dahmer's apartment, where they engaged in oral sex. Smith was drugged and strangled. No remains were ever found.
8. Ernest Miller, 24. September 2, 1990. Dahmer took Miller to his apartment after offering him $50 to pose nude, had intercourse with him, drugged him, and, instead of strangling him, cut his throat. Dahmer cut off Miller's biceps, placing them in his freezer, and decided that he would keep the entire skeleton. "I separated the joints, the arm joints, the leg joints, and had to do two boilings. I think I used four boxes of Soilex for each one, put in the upper portion of the body and boiled that for about two hours and then the lower portion for another two hours. The Soilex removes all the flesh, turns it into a jelly like-like substance and it just rinses off. Then I laid the clean bones in a light bleach solution, left them there for a day and spread them out on either newspaper or cloth and let them dry for about a week in the bedroom."
9. David Thomas, 22. September 24, 1990. Dahmer and Thomas were sharing drinks at Dahmer's apartment when Dahmer drugged Thomas and decided that it was best to kill him. Dahmer took pictures of the entire dismemberment, including several pictures of Thomas' severed head in different positions around the apartment. Thomas' sister later viewed these photographs in order to identify him.
10. Curtis Straughter, 18. March 7, 1991. After Dahmer suggested that Straughter pose for pictures, they returned to Dahmer's apartment. Straughter was strangled with a leather strap while performing oral sex on Dahmer. The skull, hands, and genitals were kept.
11. Errol Lindsey, 19. April 7, 1991. Dahmer met Lindsey at a bus stop near a homosexual book store and paid him to come back to his apartment. Dahmer drugged and killed Lindsey and performed oral sex on his corpse. The skull was kept.
12. Tony Hughes, 31. May 24, 1991. Dahmer met Hughes, a deaf-mute, at Club 219 and wrote an offer to come to his apartment and pose for $50. Dahmer drugged and strangled Hughes, leaving his body on his bed. It wasn't until several days later that the corpse was dismembered and the skull kept.
13. Konerak Sinthasomphone, 14. May 27, 1991. Dahmer met Sinthasomphone, the brother of the boy who was sexually assaulted by Dahmer in 1988, outside of a shopping center and offered him money to return to Dahmer's apartment. Sinthasomphone posed for two photographs in his underwear before being drugged and experimented on by Dahmer. Attempting to create a "zombie", he drilled holes in Sinthasomphone's head and injected acid. After Dahmer left the apartment to get beer, Sinthasomphone escaped and began to wander the street, dazed, where he was spotted by two 18-year-old girls. The police were called, but Dahmer was able to convince them that Sinthasomphone was his 19-year-old boyfriend, John Hmong, who had merely had too much to drink. The officers entered Dahmer's apartment, but only saw a tidy living room. Had they searched further, they would have found photographs of Dahmer's dismemberments and the body of Tony Hughes, which had been decomposing on Dahmer's bed for three days. Had they done a required background check on Dahmer, they would have discovered his extensive record. Instead, they left Sinthasomphone to be strangled. Dahmer likely had sex with the corpse before dismembering it, taking pictures, and keeping the skull. When the mother of one of the 18-year-old girls called police days later to point out that "John Hmong" looked like a boy who was now reported missing, an officer was never sent to investigate.
14. Matt Turner, 20. June 30, 1991. Dahmer met Turner at a bus station in Chicago after the Gay Pride Parade. They took a greyhound bus back to Milwaukee, where Dahmer drugged and strangled Turner. His head and internal organs were placed in Dahmer's freezer and his torso was placed in a 57-gallon barrel of acid in Dahmer's bedroom.
15. Jeremiah Weinberger, 23. July 6, 1991. Dahmer met Weinberger at a gay bar in Chicago and the two rode again by greyhound bus back to Milwaukee. At Dahmer's apartment, the two had sex and Weinberger spent the night. When he asked to leave, he was drugged and boiling water was injected into his brain by Dahmer in another attempt to create a zombie love slave. He stayed alive for two days. "I came back from work the second night. He had died and it kind of struck me as particularly horrifying, because he was the only one that died with his eyes, his eyes were just wide open." Dahmer dismembered the corpse, stored the head in his freezer, and placed the torso in the barrel of acid.
16. Oliver Lacy, 23. July 15, 1991. Dahmer met Lacy on the street and the two went back to Dahmer's apartment. Dahmer drugged and strangled Lacy and had sex with the corpse before dismembering it. He ate a bicep and placed the head in the refrigerator and the heart in the freezer in order to eat it later. The entire skeleton was kept.
17. Joseph Bradehoft, 25. July 16, 1991. Dahmer met Bradehoft at a bus stop and offered him money to pose nude. They returned to Dahmer's apartment and had sex, after which Dahmer drugged Bradehoft and strangled him with a leather strap. Bradehoft's corpse lay on Dahmer's bed for two days before it was dismembered. Dahmer put the head in his freezer and the torso in the barrel of acid.
On July 22, 1991, Dahmer met Tracy Edwards, 32, and they returned to Dahmer's apartment to have a few beers. When Dahmer placed a handcuff on Edwards' left wrist and attacked him with a knife, Edwards managed to escape the apartment and flag down a police car. He led them back to Dahmer's apartment, where they discovered evidence of his crimes when looking for the knife. Soon after, crews in biohazard suits were removing the contents of Dahmer's apartment.
"I really screwed up this time."
Dahmer pleaded not guilty to 13 counts of first-degree intentional homicide and two counts of first-degree murder, but later changed his plea to insanity in 1992. The court battle between District Attorney Michael McCann and defense lawyer Gerald Boyle ended when the jury found Dahmer guilty on all 15 counts. He was sentenced to 15 consecutive life sentences.
"...if I was killed in prison. That would be a blessing right now."
On November 28, 1994, while serving at Columbia Correctional Institute in Portage, Wisconsin, Dahmer was bludgeoned to death by fellow inmate Christopher Scarver, 25, who believed that he was the son of God.
Compiled from various sources.