Famed for being one of the most prolific serial killers in the United States, Jeffrey Dahmer had a victim count of seventeen. The number is quite high as it is quite shocking how he managed to evade law enforcement’s radar to the extent that he managed to kill so many people. The serial killer did several sinister things like rape, cannibalism, dismemberment and necrophilia to his victims. Therefore, this article will explore the 35 sinister facts about the serial killer to give the killer an insight into who Jeffrey Dahmer was and the impact he left on the world because of the crimes that he committed.
1 Jeffrey Dahmer was neglected when he was a child
A picture of Jeffrey Dahmer from his high school yearbook-Wikimedia
When determining how one came to be a serial killer, trauma experts often look at the past and examine the experiences and traumas that this person may have had. This is because the traumas can become triggers later when the person has grown up. While examining Jeffrey Dahmer, the experts wanted to determine if Dahmer was just a psychopath or if the traumas in his life influenced the way he turned out.
It was discovered that the serial killer was neglected a lot as a child because his parents did not get along well and this meant that they were constantly quarrelling. This means that he was not given the attention he deserved and also, his mother had mental issues which meant that he did not care for him well.
2 He had multiple disorders
From his crimes, it is evident that something was wrong with Jeffrey Dahmer. This was backed up by the psychiatric evaluations done on him before he was put on trial. The evaluations revealed that Dahmer suffered from a schizotypal personality disorder, borderline personality disorder and several other psychotic disorders.
3 He drew inspiration from his father
Jeffrey Dahmer’s father was a supervisor at PPG Industries which was a company in Ohio city. Attached to the analytical department of the company, Lionel taught his son many things like how to dissect racoons and possums. This means that Jeffrey learnt how to dissect a body from an early age. He also learnt how to preserve the body. His father thought he was teaching him these things to persuade him and instead, Jeffrey used his knowledge on his victims.
4 While in school, Dahmer had his own fan club
A poster written My Friend Dahmer by Aperture Entertainment-Wikimedia
Jeffrey Dahmer was popularly known as the class clown while he was in school. This is because he had a great sense of humour and also fascinated his fellow classmates with his pranks which included pretending to have seizures. The students were fascinated by his antics that they formed the Dahmer Fan Club where they encouraged him to do the antics. Years later, after what Dahmer did was revealed, the students were shocked as they did not think that the silly antics that they were doing in school would turn out to be that sinister.
5 He plotted his first attack when he was 16 years old
When Jeffrey Dahmer was 16 years old, he plotted how he was going to attack a man that ran past his house while on a jog. The serial killer developed a crush on a jogger that passed in front of his house and decided to attack him. Dahmer hid behind the bushes with a baseball bat which he intended to hit the man with and then proceed to act out his rape fantasy. As luck would have it, the man did not go for his jog that day and Dahmer gave up on that plan after he did not appear.
6 He killed his first victim after graduating high school
A picture of a dumbell by RichardKiwi. Dahmer hit his victim on the head with a dumbell-Wikimedia
Just three weeks after graduating high school, Dahmer killed his first victim. With his parents having divorced in 1978, jeff was left alone in the house as his father moved out of the house and his mother had taken his younger brother and moved elsewhere. On June 18, 1978, Dahmer invited Steven Hicks to his house where they had drinks together.
When Steven wanted to leave, Dahmer did not like the idea and proceeded to hit him on the head with a dumbbell. The hitchhiker lost consciousness and Dahmer went on to strangle him until he died. He then removed his clothes and masturbated over his body before proceeding to dissect it and bury the parts in a shallow grave in his backyard. Weeks later, he exhumed the body and poured acid on it to strip the flesh.
7 He had a fascination for dead things
As a child, Dahmer first collected insects and butterflies. Later, he turned to collecting road dead and always kept the carcasses in jars after dismembering them because he was fascinated by the way the pieces fit together.
8 Jeffrey Dahmer was obsessed with bones
When Jeff was 4 years old, his father excavated and removed the bones of a dead animal from under the family home. Jeff then acquired a bizarre obsession with the sound bones made and began collecting and toying with bones, according to his father. After that, he would frequently try to find more bones in and around the house where he was raised.
9 Dahmer was an alcoholic
Bottles of alcohol by Λίνα Μούρτζιου-Wikimedia
He struggled with alcoholism at a very young age and he would smuggle alcohol to school. He studied at Rivere High School in Richfield where he participated in extracurricular activities and his teachers observed him to be polite and highly intelligent. He kept alcohol in his locker and could drink it and when asked by classmates he would say it is his medicine.
10 He was a predator in the U.S. Army.
After graduation and his first killing, he enrolled in Ohio State University to major in business and dropped out three months into his first semester due to alcoholism. Due to his father’s encouragement, he joined the U.S. Army and trained as a medical specialist at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio Texas. Two soldiers claimed to be raped by Dahmer during his time present but was discharged from the army in March of 1981 due to alcoholism.
11 Dahmer exposed himself to children at a park.
Within two weeks of Dahmer returning home, he was arrested for alcoholism and his father decided to send him to his grandmother in West Allis as he no longer knew how to help him. However, his drinking never subsided as a few months later Dahmer was arrested for indecent exposure on August 7th, 1982 for exposing himself to a group of women and children at the park. He spent the majority of the next few years unemployed until he was employed at the Ambrosia Chocolate Factory.
12 He tried to steal a corpse.
A picture of a corpse by Ralf Roletschek-Wikimedia
Dahmer read an obituary in the newspaper, The Man Who Could Not Kill Enough by Anne E. Schwartz, for a recently deceased man. He later admitted to having attempted to dig up the grave but gave up because the ground was too hard for him. His motivation for wanting to dig out the remains was not revealed but it is clear that he wanted to expand his collection of remains as we’ve discovered that he was weirdly obsessed with bones.
13 Jeffrey Dahmer lied about masturbating in front of children.
In 1986, Dahmer was arrested for masturbating in front of children but he claimed that he was urinating and his charge was changed to disorderly conduct. This is quite weird in that how would anyone of a sane mind go and urinate where the children are watching? His actions do not align with his claims and the local authorities should have investigated his claims deeper as they do not add up.
14 He had a routine for how he lured, murdered, disposed of, and kept the bodies of his victims.
Dahmer would lure them to his home with offers of money for sex, or money for private photoshoots. He would drug, rape and kill his male victims. He would remove the bones from the body by either using acid or cutting the flesh from the bones. Then he would either smash the bones and scatter them or discard them. However, Dahmer always kept the skull of his victims. According to The Journal Times, Dahmer stated that it was a way of remembering their appearances and if he could not keep them there, he could keep their skeletons.
15 Suspected of killing Adam Walsh.
After he was discharged from the military, he decided to move to Miami instead of returning home to Ohio. He worked in a deli but ended up homeless. When news of his crimes came out, witnesses who allegedly saw him at Florida’s Hollywood Mall where little Adam Walsh went missing started reporting. He however denied any involvement with Walsh’s murder.
16 He enjoyed having sex with people who did not give their consent
A picture of Diazepam by .Tmtrott. The drug is used as a sedative. Dahmer put sedatives in his victims drinks to prevent them from moving while he raped them-Wikimedia
Jeffery Dahmer revealed that he enjoyed having sex with non consenting partners as they did not move much like consenting partners. Jeffrey Dahmer frequented gay bars where he picked up men that he would come home with and then have sex with the. He revealed that he did not like sex with these men as they moved too much during intercourse and it frustrated him greatly.
To ensure that his partners were not moving while having intercourse, Dahmer started lacing their drinks with sedatives and then proceeded to rape them while they were unconscious. This resulted in several complaints from his victims and Dahmer’s membership in bathhouses was revoked. This move did not deter h as he continued with his disgusting behaviour in hotel rooms.
17 He had a mannequin
While living with his grandmother, Jeffrey Dahmer stole a mannequin from a local store so that he could use it to satisfy his sexual urges. When his grandmother found out that he had the mannequin, she forced him to throw it away. His use of a mannequin to satisfy his sexual urges can be attributed to the fact that he did not like his partners moving and therefore, the mannequin was perfect for him as it did not move.
18 He once took a human head to work
While working in the chocolate factory, Jeffrey Dahmer once took a human head to work. His sinister private life had overlapped with his work life and thus prompted him to take the mummified head to work. In an interview after he was arrested, he claimed that the compulsion was too strong in that he had the urge to keep something of the victim with him at all times.
19 He was fascinated with The Exorcist III and Star Wars
The Star Wars logo by Weweje-Wikimedia
The serial killer urges are hard to explain the urges that prompted him to go on a killing spree. Dahmer hyped himself into killing someone by watching specific movies. He revelled in the evilness of the Emperor in Return of the Jedi, even going so far as to wear yellow contact lenses to embody the Star Wars villain. Dahmer was also obsessed with The Exorcist III, a film about a supernatural serial killer. One victim who escaped accounts that he remembers seeing the Exorcist III playing in the background
20 He planned to build an altar with his victims
After being arrested, Jeffery Dahmer confessed that he had planned to create an altar in his house with the rains of his victims. This is a quite chilling and sinister admission as it is hard to comprehend why someone would want to create an altar using human remains.
The serial killer was very serious about the project that he had even created a sketch of how the altar was going to look. The sketch featured a black table that was fitted with skulls and surrounded by skeletons. Jeffrey planned for the altar to be a place where he meditated.
21 He was caught by the police and managed to get away
Police in a crime scene. Photo by Tony Webster-Wikimedia
Dahmer once drugged a boy known as Sinthasomphone intending to rape him but he was unsuccessful as the young man was found on the streets dazed and disoriented by three women who called the police. When questioned, Dahmer managed to convince the police that they were drunk and had just had a couple’s fight.
The women who had called the police did not believe the story but the local authorities did not see anything wrong with his story and even went to the extent of accompanying them to Dahmer’s apartment.
22 He tried to make his victims zombies
The serial killer was involved in many sinister acts that one would not imagine anyone would do. Dahmer wanted to subjugate his victims and this is evident when he drilled a hole in Errol Lindsey’s skull who was a teenager that he had managed to lure into his apartment. Jeffrey poured hydrochloric acid into the hole he had drilled in her skull. He thought that in doing so, the girl would turn into a docile zombie.
Surprisingly, the girl survived the ordeal and woke up complaining that her head was aching. Jeffrey went on and strangled her. He also did the same experiment on another victim known as Konerak Sinthasomphine but he survived and even managed to escape when Dahmer had gone to buy alcohol. Dahmer however caught up with him and with the help of the police brought him back to his apartment and killed him.
23 It is believed that a surgery he underwent while still, a child may have changed his personality
After being born, Jeffrey Dahmer had problems with his legs and did not have mobility for them until he was four months old. This can be attributed to the fact that while pregnant, his mother was taking medications for a health issue. When he was four years old, young Dahmer underwent surgery that aimed to repair the double hernia in his scrotum.
The surgery may have traumatised the child as he believed that his genitals had been cut off and was even shy after the surgery. Clinical Psychologist, Judith Becker who examined the serial killer before his trial believes that the event laid a foundation for how he turned out later in life.
24 His victim count was at 17 when he was arrested
At the time of his arrest, Jeffrey Dahmer’s victim count was quite high as he had killed seventeen people before he was apprehended. He targeted men who were vulnerable and would not be noticed that they were missing like drug dealers, hitchhikers and runaways. He killed his first victim in the basement of his grandmother’s house without her knowledge but she soon kicked him out as he came home drunk.
25 He viewed people as objects
A picture of skeletons by AKD-Wikimedia
Jeffrey Dahmer had an unhealthy obsession with bones and body parts which led to depersonalization. This meant that he began viewing people as mere objects. By doing so, it meant that he did not care about the pain that they would feel when he attacked his victims as he had distanced himself from these emotions and therefore did not feel empathy. His depersonalization technique meant that he could torture the victims and dissect the body parts without feeling any remorse.
26 He had a sinister Polaroid collection
After killing his victim, Jeffrey Dahmer would take pictures of the victim’s body at different states of dismemberment. This was a gruesome and sinister site as the photos show what the victims went through at the hands of this sinister killer. When asked about it, Dahmer claimed that it was his way of remembering the beauty of his victims.
27 There was a foul smell in his apartment
The smell emanating from Jeffrey Dahmer’s apartment was one of the selling factors that led to him being found. Jeffrey Dahmer’s neighbours described him as someone who was withdrawn and shy and thus did not interact with him. However, they started to notice a weird smell coming from his house. This was because Dahmer had wrapped his victim’s body parts in plastic bags and stored them in the fridge. This was quite unusual as most serial killers keep some pieces of clothing as souvenirs from their victims and dispose of the body in an effort to mask the smell.
28 Jeffrey Dahmer’s family enabled him
A mugshot of Jeffrey Dahmer by Gozsei-Wikimedia
Dahmer was able to continue terrorising people and claiming so many lives because his family enabled him. This is because every time he was arrested and charged with minor charges like indecent public exposure, his father would rush to his side and hire a private attorney to defend him in court. This meant that he would get lenient punishments. Furthermore, his grandmother allowed him to stay at her house where he would commit heinous crimes under her roof.
29 He was on a blackout when he went on a murder spree
While committing some of his crimes, Jeffrey Dahmer was not in his right mind. He even confessed that he does not remember killing one of his first victims known as Steven Tuomi. He only said that he recalls going to bed and waking up the next morning with a corpse that had been brutalized. He also did his killings when he was drunk as that was the only time that he lost his natural inhibitions and could act on his urges.
30 He retained his sense of humour even while in prison
A picture of an inmate in his cell. Photo by Simon Burchell-Wikimedia
A former prison guard minister known as Roy Ratcliff revealed to CNN in an interview that the serial killer remained with his sense of humour in that Dahmer would tell the guards that he bites just to see a reaction from them. He also took his food and shaped them to look like human limbs and then add ketchup to look like severed limbs and leave it out for the other inmates to find.
31 His apartment looked like a sinister museum
When law enforcement authorities raided his apartment, they were shocked at the state of the house as it looked more like a gruesome museum than a crime scene. The officers found photographs of his victims and they depicted the gruesome deaths that they went through. The refrigerator was filled with human body parts which the serial killer had collected from his victims. They also found bodies dissolving in a drum that was filled with acid in his bedroom. The site was shocking to the law enforcement authorities.
32 Jeffrey Dahmer was a cannibal
This is quite a scary fact as it is hard to imagine that there is someone that enjoys eating human flesh. Jeffrey Dahmer was one of these people as he was a true cannibal in that after killing his victims, he would cut up parts and put them in his fridge to preserve them for later consumption. While he was with his last victim, a man known as Tracy Edwards, Jeffrey Dahmer placed the victim’s head on his chest and told him that he wanted to eat his heart.
33 He did not feel remorse for any of his crimes
This is a question that most asked as people want to know if Dahmer truly felt sorry for the crimes he committed. From his confessions, it does not seem like the man felt any remorse for his crimes as his voice did not portray any traces of regret. His body language and demeanour also showed him as someone who was just giving out information instead of feeling guilty
34 He pleaded guilty to all his crimes
A play about dahmer. Poster by Kris-Wikimedia
When serial killer is often caught, they immediately deny that they did not commit the crimes they are being charged with and look for an attorney to defend them. This was not the case in Jeffrey Dahmer’s case in that he did not bother with an attorney and he immediately plead guilty after being arrested. He even went on and had a 60-hour confession where he described how he killed all his victims. When he was placed on trial, he was sentenced to 16 life sentences.
35 He was beaten to death
In November 1994, Dahmer was assigned some duties with two other prisoners and was left unsupervised. One of the prisoners Christopher Scarver was with him at Colombia Correctional institution began to question Dahmer about his crimes and why most of his victims were African American. This resulted in a scuffle and Scarver bludgeoned Jeffrey with a steel bar that was part of gym equipment. While being transported to the hospital, Dahmer died from his wounds.
Check out this article on Henry Loius who was a serial killer in Charlotte here