Birth name: Jeffrey Lionel Dahmer
Also known as: The Milwaukee Cannibal,
The Milwaukee Monster
Born: May 21, 1960
West Allis, Wisconsin, U.S.
Died: November 28, 1994 (aged 34)
Portage, Wisconsin, U.S.
Cause of death: Severe head trauma
- Child molestation
- Disorderly conduct
- Indecent exposure
- Public intoxication
Jeffrey Lionel Dahmer (May 21, 1960 – November 28, 1994) was an American serial killer and sex offender, also known as the Milwaukee Cannibal, who committed the rape, murder and dismemberment of 17 men and boys between 1978 and 1991, with many of his later murders also involving necrophilia and cannibalism. Court psychologists and prison psychiatrists diagnosed him with borderline personality disorder. Dahmer was convicted of 15 of these murders on February 15, 1992 and sentenced to 15 terms of life imprisonment
Jeffrey Dahmer was born in West Allis, Wisconsin, the first son of Joyce Annette and Lionel Herbert Dahmer. Dahmer’s mother worked as a teletype machine instructor whereas his father was a student at Marquette University, working towards a degree in chemistry.
Although Dahmer was doted upon as an infant and toddler by both parents, his mother was known to be tense, greedy for attention and argumentative with both her husband and her neighbors. As her son entered first grade, Joyce Dahmer began to spend an increasing amount of her time in bed recovering from weakness. Lionel’s university studies kept him away from home much of the time; when he was home, Joyce demanded constant attention. She reportedly would work herself into a state of anxiety over trivial matters simply to achieve appeasement from her husband. On one occasion, Joyce Dahmer attempted suicide from an overdose of the Equanil pills to which she had become addicted.As a result, neither parent had much time to care for Jeffrey.
Dahmer himself recalled his early years of family life as being of “extreme tension” which he noted between his parents, whom he observed to be consistently arguing with each other. At school, he was observed to be both quiet and timid; one first grade teacher noted upon Dahmer’s first grade report card that she observed him to be a reserved child whom she sensed to feel neglected. Nonetheless, he was regarded as a “quiet kid” by many of his peers. Although largely reserved and uncommunicative in grade school, Dahmer did have a small number of friends.
From an early age, Dahmer manifested an interest in animals. Friends later recalled Dahmer initially collected large insects, dragonflies and butterflies which he placed inside jars. Later, Dahmer—occasionally accompanied by one or more of his few friends—would collect animal carcasses from the roadside; these animals Dahmer would dismember either at home or in an expanse of woodland behind the family home. According to one friend, Dahmer would dismember these animals and store the parts in jars in the family’s wooden toolshed, always explaining that he was curious as to how each animal “fitted together”. In one instance, he is known to have impaled a dog’s head upon a stake behind his house.
Dahmer’s fascination with dead animals might have begun when, at the age of four, he noted his father removing animal bones from beneath the family home. According to Lionel Dahmer, his son was “oddly thrilled” by the sound the bones made.
The Dahmer family relocated to Doylestown, Ohio, in October of 1966. At the time, Joyce Dahmer was pregnant with her second child. When she gave birth to a baby boy on December 18, 1966,.The same year, Lionel Dahmer achieved his degree and subsequently obtained employment as an analytical chemist in the city of Akron.
In 1968, the family relocated to Bath, Ohio. Two years later, over a family meal of chicken, Dahmer asked his father what would happen if the bones of the chicken were to be placed in bleach.Lionel Dahmer was by this stage concerned as to his elder son’s placid and lethargic attitude and his solitary existence; he was delighted at the initiative displayed by his son towards what he believed to be scientific curiosity; therefore he willingly demonstrated how to bleach and, later, preserve animal bones. The knowledge regarding cleansing and preserving of these bones Dahmer would later utilize upon many of the animal remains with he continued to avidly collect and of which his father, being a chemist, taught his son safe usage.
Known murder victims
Jeffrey Dahmer is known to have killed 17 young men between 1978 and 1991. Of these victims, 12 were killed in his North 25th Street apartment. Three further victims were murdered and dismembered at his grandmother’s West Allis residence, with his first and second victims being murdered at his parents’ home in Bath, Ohio and at the Ambassador Hotel in Wisconsin respectively.
Most of Dahmer’s victims were killed by strangulation after being drugged with sedatives, although his first victim was killed by a combination of bludgeoning and strangulation and his second victim was battered to death, with one further victim killed in 1990, Ernest Miller, dying of a combination of shock and blood loss due to his carotid artery being cut. Many of Dahmer’s victims killed in 1991 had holes bored into their skulls through which Dahmer injected Muriatic acid or, later, boiling water, directly into the brain in an attempt to render a permanent, submissive, unresistant state. On at least three occasions, this proved fatal although on none of these occasions was this Dahmer’s intention.
- June 18: Stephen Hicks, 18. Last seen hitchhiking to a rock concert in Chippewa Lake Park. He was bludgeoned and strangled to death with a dumbbell before being dismembered. Remains pulverized and scattered in woodland behind Dahmer’s childhood home.
- November 20: Steven Tuomi, 25. Killed in a rented room at the Ambassador Hotel. Dahmer claimed to have no memory of murdering Tuomi, yet stated he must have battered him to death in a drunken stupor. His body was dismembered in the basement of Dahmer’s grandmother’s house and the remains discarded in the trash. No remains were ever found.
- January 16: James Doxtator, 15. Met Dahmer outside a gay bar in Wisconsin. Doxtator was lured to West Allis on the pretext of earning $50 for posing for nude pictures. Dahmer strangled Doxtator and kept his body in the basement for a week before dismembering him and discarding the remains in the trash. No remains were ever found.
- March 24: Richard Guerrero, 25. Drugged and strangled in Dahmer’s bedroom at West Allis. Dahmer dismembered Guerrero’s corpse in the basement, dissolved the flesh in acid and disposed of the bones in the trash. He bleached and retained the skull for several months before disposing of it.No remains were ever found.
- March 25: Anthony Sears, 26. Sears was the last victim to be drugged and strangled at Dahmer’s grandmother’s residence; he was also the first victim from whom Dahmer permanently retained any body parts. His preserved skull and genitals would be found in a filing cabinet at 924 North 25th Street following Dahmer’s arrest in 1991.
- May 29: Raymond Smith, 32. The first victim to be killed at Dahmer’s North Street apartment. Smith was a male prostitute whom Dahmer encountered at a tavern. Dahmer gave Smith a drink laced with sleeping pills, then strangled him on his kitchen floor. His skull was spray-painted and retained.
- June 14: Edward Smith, 27. A known acquaintance of Dahmer who was last seen in his company at a party. Dahmer acidified Smith’s skeleton; his skull was destroyed unintentionally when placed in the oven in an effort to remove moisture. No remains were ever found.
- September 2: Ernest Miller, 22. Miller was a dance student whom Dahmer encountered outside a bookstore. According to Dahmer, he was especially attracted to Miller’s physique. He was killed by having his carotid artery severed before being dismembered in the bathtub, with Dahmer storing his entire skeleton in the bottom drawer of a filing cabinet and his heart, biceps and portions of his legs in the freezer for later consumption.
- September 24: David Thomas, 22. Encountered Dahmer near the Grand Avenue Mall; he was lured to Dahmer’s apartment on the promise of money for posing nude. Once unconscious from consuming a laced drink, Dahmer decided Thomas “wasn’t my type”. Nonetheless, Dahmer strangled Thomas, taking Polaroid photos of the dismemberment process. No remains were ever found.
- February 18: Curtis Straughter, 17. Approached by Dahmer as he waited at a bus stop near Marquette University. Dahmer lured Straughter to his apartment, where the youth was drugged, then handcuffed and strangled before being dismembered in the bathtub. His skull, hands and genitals were retained.
- April 7: Errol Lindsey, 19. The first victim upon whom Dahmer drilled holes into the skull, through which he injected Muriatic acid into the brain. (Dahmer referred to this practice as his “drilling technique”.) According to Dahmer, Lindsey awoke after this practice, after which he again rendered Lindsey unconscious with a drink laced with sedatives, then strangled him to death. Dahmer flayed Lindsey’s body and retained the skin for several weeks. His skull was found following Dahmer’s arrest.
- May 24: Tony Hughes, 31. Hughes was a deaf-mute whom Dahmer lured to his apartment upon the promise of posing nude for photographs. As Hughes was deaf, he and Dahmer communicated using handwritten notes. He was strangled and his body left on Dahmer’s bedroom floor for three days before being dismembered, with Dahmer photographing the dismemberment process. His skull was retained and identified from dental records.
- May 27: Konerak Sinthasomphone, 14. The younger brother of the boy Dahmer had assaulted in 1988. Sinthasomphone was drugged and had Muriatic acid injected into his brain before Dahmer left the youth unattended as he left the apartment to purchase beer. When he returned, he discovered Sinthasomphone naked and disoriented in the street, with three hysterical young women attempting to assist him. When police arrived, Dahmer persuaded them he and Sinthasomphone were lovers and that the youth was simply intoxicated. When police left Sinthasomphone with Dahmer in his apartment, Dahmer again injected Muriatic acid into Sinthasomphone’s brain, and this proved fatal. His head was retained in the freezer and his body dismembered.
- June 30: Matt Turner, 20. On June 30, Dahmer attended the Chicago Pride Parade. At a bus stop, he encountered a 20-year-old named Matt Turner and persuaded him to accompany him to Chicago to pose for a photo shoot. Turner was drugged, strangled, then dismembered in the bathtub. His head and internal organs were placed in the freezer and his torso subsequently placed in a 57-gallon drum Dahmer purchased on July 12.
- July 5: Jeremiah Weinberger, 23. Met Dahmer at a gay bar in Chicago and agreed to accompany him to Milwaukee for the weekend. Dahmer drilled through Weinberger’s skull and injected boiling water into the cavity. He later recalled Weinberger’s death to be exceptional as he was the only victim who died with his eyes open Weinberger’s decapitated body was kept in the bathtub for a week before being dismembered; his torso was placed in the 57-gallon drum.
- July 15: Oliver Lacy, 23. A bodybuilding enthusiast whom Dahmer enticed to his apartment on the promise of money for posing for photographs. Lacy was drugged and strangled with a leather strap before being decapitated, with his head and heart being placed in the refrigerator. His skeleton was retained to adorn one side the private shrine of skulls and skeletons Dahmer was in the process of creating when arrested one week later.
- July 19: Joseph Bradehoft, 25. Dahmer’s last victim. Bradehoft was a father of 3 children from Minnesota who was looking for work in Milwaukee at the time of his murder. He was left on Dahmer’s bed for two days following his murder before, on July 21, being decapitated. His head was placed in the refrigerator and his torso in the 57-gallon drum.