Jeffrey Dahmer

The Milwaukee Cannibal, Jeffrey Dahmer, was an American killer convicted of murdering 17 men between 1978 and 1991. Initially diagnosed with schizotypal personality disorder was found completely sane during his trial. He was beaten to death by a fellow inmate at Columbia Correctional Institution of Wisconsin.

Jeffrey Dahmer’s Overview

  • Birth Name: Jeffrey Lionel Dahmer
  • Age: 34
  • Date of Birth: May 21, 1960
  • Place of Birth: Milwaukee, Wisconsin, US
  • Date of Birth: November 28, 1994
  • Place of Death: Portage, Wisconsin, US
  • Nationality: American
  • Father: Lionel Herbert Dahmer
  • Mother: Joyce Annette
  • Siblings: David Dahmer
  • Spouse:
  • Children:

Read also: Drew Peterson, Former Police Officer Turned Murderer

Early Life, Education and Family (Parents and Siblings)

  • Born on May 21, 1960, Jeffrey Dahmer was the elder son of Lionel Herbert Dahmer and Joyce Annette.
  • His father was a chemistry researcher while her mother was a teletype machine instructor.
  • As per the sources, he was often deprived of attention as an infant.
  • According to the teachers of his elementary school, he was mostly quiet and timid and showed signs of abandonment.
  • In October 1966, Dahmer’s family moved to Doylestown, Ohio where his mother gave birth to his brother and he was allowed to name him and he named him David.
  • At four, Jeffrey was fascinated with dead animals. According to his father, he always got thrilled by the sound of the bones and called them “fiddlesticks”.
  • He also used to search for bones around his house to find bones.
  • The family again shifted to Bath Township in Ohio, a small hut was just a few minutes walk from the house. Dahmer used to collect insects and skeletons of small animals.
  • Around two years later, during a chicken dinner, Dahmer asked his father about what would happen if bones are kept in bleach. His father was impressed by his son’s scientific curiosity and demonstrated him the same.
  • Jeffrey Dahmer, later, incorporated these methods to preserve the bones and animals he collected.
  • According to one of his friends, he explained him that he was curious to know how animals fitted together.


  • At Revere High School during his freshman year, he was mostly seen as an outcast. He drank hard alcohol during daylight hours . He kept liquor bottles in his school jackets.
  • In his puberty, Dahmer found that he is a gay, however, he did not tell his parents.
  • In his early teens, he was in a relationship with another teenager. He fantasized dominating a male partner into submission.
  • After his grades declined in 1977, Dahmer’s parents hired a private tutor. Next year in May, he graduated from high school.
  • In the same year, his parents’ divorce was finalized, his father started living in a motel while his mother moved to Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin along with his younger brother and he was left alone in the family house.

Read also: Leslie Van Houten, Murderer from The Manson Family

Late Teens and the First Murder

Murder of Steven Hicks

  • Just after the completion of his graduation in 1978, Jeffrey Dahmer attempted his first murder. He murder a 19 year old man named Steven Mark Hicks.
  • He invited him to his house for drinking and Hicks agreed to his offer and accompanied him to his house.
  • After seeing bare-chested Hicks standing, Dahmer’s sexual feelings got stirred, however, he knew his feelings will be rejected.
  • After a few hours of drinking and talking Hicks wanted to leave but Dahmer does not want him to and so Dahmer got him struck from behind using a dumbbell.
  • After Hicks fell unconscious, Jeffrey Dahmer murdered him using the bar of dumbbell. Dahmer then stripped clothes from Hicks body and started masturbating while standing above the body.
  • On the next day, he dissected his body in the basement of his house and later buried his remains in the house backyard.
  • After a few weeks, he took out the remains and dissolved the flesh in the acidic solution and fleshed it and crushed the bones and scattered them in the garden behind his house.

Dropping out of college and starting Army Service

  • After six weeks of murdering Hicks, Jeffrey Dahmer’s father and his fiancée came back home where they saw Jeffrey living alone.
  • In August of the same year, Dahmer joined Ohio State University for major in business, however, his first term was completely unproductive and got poor grades.
  • He dropped out of the university in just three months even though his father had paid for the second term.
  • In January or 1979, he enrolled for the US Army after his father insisted and took the training of the medical specialist at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, Texas.
  • In July 1979, Dahmer was deployed at Baumholder in West Germany as a combat medic of the 2nd Battalion, 68th Armored Regiment, 8th infantry division. Hi first year in service was an average one.
  • However, his performance declined due to alcohol abuse and in March 1981, he was seen as unsuitable for the military service and so was discharged from the Army.
  • In March, 1981, for debriefing he was sent to the Fort Jackson in South Carolina and was given flight ticket to travel in the country.
  • He told police that he cannot go home since he won’t be able to face his father and so he preferred to go to Miami Beach, Florida.
  • After reaching Florida, he found a job at a shop and rented a motel to live. However, he was evicted from the motel due to non-payment as he spent most of his income on alcohol but continued to work at the shop until he asked his father to return to Ohio in September.

Read also: Laci Peterson, The Girl Murdered by Her Husband

Returning to Ohio and Relocating to Wisconsin

  • Upon his return to his hometown, he stayed with his father and stepmother, his heavy drinking continued.
  • Two weeks later, he was arrested for drinking and misconduct and was fined $60 along with 10 days jail sentence.
  • By the end of 1981, Jeffrey Dahmer’s father and stepmother sent him to his grandmother living in West Allis, Wisconsin with a hope that her influence might help him quit drinking and live a better life.
  • Initially, he lived harmoniously with his grandmother, accompanied her to church prayers, helped her in chores and followed her rules but he did not quit drinking.
  • He found a job in early 1982 as a phlebotomist at Milwaukee Blood Plasma Center and continued working for about 10 months.
  • After working at the Blood Center, he remained unemployed for more than two years and survived on grandmother’s money.
  • In January 1985, he got the job of a mixer at a Chocolate Factory. Soon he was propositioned by a man while he was sitting in a public library. He offered Dahmer to perform fellatio upon him. This stirred fantasies in his mind but he didn’t respond.
  • He also stole a mannequin from a nearby store that he later used for sexual stimulation. When his grandmother saw it, she asked him to discard it.
  • In late 1985, Dahmer frequently visited bathhouses but during sexual acts he easily became frustrated since he visualized people at objects of sexual pleasure rather than humans.
  • In June of 1986, he started giving sleeping pills in alcohol to his partners and after they fall asleep, he performed sexual acts on them.
  • To get the pills, he informed doctors that since he worked at worked, he need pills to adjust his body.
  • After bathhouses witnessed such incidents, they revoked Dahmer’s membership but he continued to do the same in the hotel rooms.
  • In September 1986, he was arrested for lewd and lascivious behavior after masturbating around 12 year old boys nearby Kinnickinnic river. He was sentenced to one year probation with counseling and other instructions.

Subsequent Murders done by Jeffrey Dahmer

  • In November 1987, Jeffrey Dahmer while residing with his grandmother, came across a 25 year old man, Steven Tuomi, at a bar and asked him to come to Ambassador hotel.
  • In a statement, Jeffrey Dahmer said that he had no intention of killing him and he didn’t know what had happened in the night.
  • To dispose the body, Dahmer purchased a suitcase so that he can transport body to the residence. After a week, he severed arms, legs, torso and head and disposed the remains of Tuomi except his head.
  • He retained his head for almost two weeks but later disposed it. After the murder, he began seeking more victims, mostly from the gay bar or around it.
  • He used to drug then and kill them after having sexual activities with them.
  • Two months later, he encountered a 14 year old American prostitute, James Doxtator, he lured him with an offer of $5- to pose for the nudes. Later after engaging with him sexually, he drugged and strangled him.
  • He disposed his remains just as he did to Tuomi’s remains.
  • From March to April, 1988, he got two more victims, but he left the second victim alive due to her grandmother’s suspicion.

Read also: Charles Cullen, The Nurse Turned Serial Killer

  • In September 1988, his grandmother asked him to move out of the house mainly because of his drinking habit and the habit of bringing men to house late night.
  • Jeffrey Dahmer then found a one bedroom apartment at 808 North 24th street and started living there.
  • After two days of moving to new apartment, he was arrested for drugging and sexually fondling a 13 year old boy.
  • Later, Dahmer’s father hired attorney to defend Dahmer. He had to undergo several psychological evaluations prior to his hearing in the court.
  • Evaluations showed that he had deep sense of alienation, another evaluation after two months showed that he is an impulsive individual with suspicion for others.
  • His probation officer presented before the court that Jeffrey Dahmer is suffering from Shizoid Personality Disorder.
  • In January 1989, Jeffrey Dahmer was found guilty of the second degree sexual assault, however, his sentence was suspended till May.
  • In March, he took a 10 days off from the work and moved back to his grandmother’s house.
  • Two months after his conviction, Jeffrey Dahmer murdered his next and fifth victim, Anthony Sears, who was an aspiring model. He disposed of his remains except head and genitalia, since he found his exceptionally attractive.
  • In May, 1989, he was sentenced to five years’ probation with work release so that he can keep his job, he was also required to register as a sex offender.
  • Two months before his release schedule, he was paroled from the regime and his probation began.
  • He temporarily resided in his grandmother’s house but later moved to Oxford Apartments in Milwaukee, close to his work place.
  • In May 1990, Jeffrey Dahmer moved to North 25th street taking Sears’ head and genitals with him and within a week he killed his sixth victim, Raymond Smith.
  • On May 27, he lured another man to his apartment, however, consumed the drug laded drink himself and woke up the next day to see that the man had robbed cash, watch and several other items from his house, however, he never reported the matter to police.
  • Again in June 1990, he lured Edward Smith to his apartment and drugged and strangled him. Later, he himself informed the police about his murder.
  • Within just three months of the incident, he came across Ernest Miller and later killed him since he only had two sleeping pills to drug him.
  • Three weeks later, he encountered David Thomas, drugged him and later killed him. In a statement, Dahmer said that he did not feel attracted to Thomas but for the fear of him being angry he killed him.
  • After the murder of Thomas, he did not kill anyone for the next five months, however, he had several unsuccessful attempts of luring man.
  • In February 1991, Jeffrey Dahmer came across Curtis Straughter and lured him to his apartment by offering him money to pose for nude pictures along with incentives for sexual intercourse.
  • Dahmer drugged him and then strangled him to death. This time he photographed each state of the dismemberment process.
  • Within two months, he lured Errol Lindsey to his apartment. He drugged Lindsey, drilled a hole in his head and poured HCL into the skull. Later, he strangled him to death and disposed of his remains but retained the skull.
  • In the same year, residents of the Oxford Apartments complained to the building manager about the foul smell coming out of Dahmer’s apartment. To this, he replied to the manager that the smell is from the spoiled contents caused by his breaking freezer.
  • In another instance, he said that the odor is from the tropical fish that died recently and that he will see that no such thing happen again.
  • In May, Dahmer did the same to Konerak Sinthasomphone. He lured him, drugged him, performed oral sex and poured Hcl in his head after drilling. Before he fell unconscious, Dahmer took him to his bed and lay naked beside him.
  • On May 27, Dahmer returned to his apartment and saw Sinthasomphone talking to three women in Lao. The women had informed the police and when the officials arrived, Dahmer told them that Sinthasomphone is his boyfriend and he is too drunk after a fight.
  • After the officers left, he again injected HCL in Sinthasomphone’s head and the next day he died. Jeffrey Dahmer disposed the body but retained the skull.
  • In June and July, he did the same to Matt Turner, Jeremiah Weinberger, Oliver Lacy and Joseph Bradehoft.


  • In July 1991, Jeffrey Dahmer tried to lure three men to his apartment but only one of them agreed to accompany him to his apartment. His name was Tracy Edwards.
  • Tracy noticed a foul smell in Dahmer’s apartment and saw large containers of hydrochloric acid on the floor to which Dahmer responded that he used HCL to clean the bricks.
  • Jeffrey Dahmer wanted to cuff Edward but was unsuccessful. When Edward accompanied him to his bedroom to pose for nudes, he saw nude male posters hanging on the wall and a 57 gallon drum is lying in a corner.
  • In an attempt to be friendly to Dahmer, Edward unbuttoned his shirt and asked him to put the knife away. Dahmer turned his attention to the TV, Edward saw him moving to and fro.
  • Jeffrey Dahmer returned his attention to Edward and said that he intends to eat his heart. In an attempt to stop Dahmer, Edward said that he is Dahmer’s friend and is not running away.
  • Edward asked Dahmer to sit in the living room with a beer to which Dahmer agreed. Edward waited to ask for using the bathroom till Dahmer had a lapse of attention.
  • When Edward stood up, he saw that Dahmer was not holding the cuffs and so he punched him in his face and ran out from the front door of the apartment.
  • Edward flagged to the police officers standing at the corner of the North 25 street and told them that a mad man had placed the handcuff to see if they can remove it. Edward took the officers to Dahmers’ apartment.
  • When three of them arrived, Jeffrey Dahmer invited them inside and acknowledged that he had placed the cuffs on Edwards’ hands but gave no explaination for doing so. Edward also informed them that he had placed a large knife on him in his bedroom.
  • Dahmer indicated to officer Muller that the handcuff’s key is in the bedside dresser. When Muller entered the room, Dahmer tried to pass him to get the keys while second officer, Rauth, asked him to back off.
  • Muller saw a large knife beneath the bed, he also opened the drawer to inspect it and found the images of human body in different stages of dismemberment. He noticed that the images had been taken in the same apartment and showed them to the other officer.
  • When Jeffrey Dahmer saw him holding the pictures, he tried to resist arrest, however, the officers overpowered and cuffed him. They also called another squad for backup.
  • At the same time, Muller opened the refrigerator and saw that freshly severed head of a male on the shelf.
  • While Dahmer was pinned on the floor, he muttered “For what I did I should e dead.”
  • A more thorough search of the apartment was carried out after which four severed heads, seven skulls, two skeletons, a pair of hands, preserved penises, mummified scalp, blood drippings, two human hearts, portions of arms and legs, torso and other human organs were found. 74 polaroid pictures of dismemberment of victims were also found.

Read also: Leslie Van Houten, Murderer from The Manson Family


  • In July 1991, detectives Patrick Kennedy and Dennis Murphy questioned him one-by-one about the crimes and evidences found.
  • Dahmer waived of his right to have a lawyer during his interrogation sessions and added that he wishes to confess all that he had done.
  • He admitted murdering 16 young men since 1987 and a victim Steven Hicks, killed in Ohio.
  • Dahmer admitted that he was engaged in necrophilia with the bodies including sexual acts with viscera.
  • Dahmer confessed how he dismembered the bodies and consumed hearts, livers, biceps, etc. He stated that he was completely swept along with his urge to kill and that it became a never-ending desire to be with someone at any cost.
  • When asked about the preserved skulls, he said that he was in the process of building an altar of skulls and they were to be kept on both sides of the skeletons.
  • When questioned about whom the altar was dedicated to which he replied, “Myself….It was a place where I could feel at home”, he further added, “ If this had happened six months later, that’s what they would have found”.

Trial and Conviction of Jeffrey Dahmer

  • In July, 1991, Jeffrey Dahmer was convicted of four first-degree murders and in August, he was charged for eleven more murders.
  • During investigation, hundreds of bone pieces were found in woodland of his family house.
  • He was not charged for murdering Edward and Tuomi.
  • Dahmer’s trial started in January 1992, he was tried for 15 first-degree murders.
  • The issue debated by the counsels was to determine if Dahmer is suffering from any mental or personality disorder.
  • Two mental health professionals were appointed by the court to independently testify the issues with Dahmer. Later, after testifying, Palermo concluded that Dahmer had mixed personality disorder along with antisocial, borderline, sadistic, fetishistic and necrophilic features.
  • Another mental health professional, Friedman testified that he had a personality disorder but he is not psychotic.
  • The trial continued for about two weeks, the closing argument was by the prosecution that Jeffrey Dahmer is a sane man and is in control of his actions.
  • On February 17, during formal sentencing, Jeffrey Dahmer’s attorney said that his client wished to address the court. Then Dahmer stood on lectern and started reading the statement prepared by himself.
  • In his statement, Jeffrey Dahmer said that he never wished freedom after his arrest and he wished for his own death. He stressed that the murders were not motivated by the hatred and that nothing could undo the harm he did to families of the victims.
  • He added that the medical knowledge he had gave him peace. He closed his address with the statement “I know my time in prison will be terrible, but I deserve whatever I get because of what I have done. Thank you, your honor, and I am prepared for your sentence, which I know will be the maximum. I ask for no consideration.”
  • Dahmer was given 16 life terms in prison.

Imprisonment and Death

  • After sentencing, Jeffrey Dahmer was shifted to the Columbia Correctional Institute.
  • Dahmer requested for a bible and he was granted the permission after which he devoted himself to Christanity.
  • In May 1994, Roy Ratcliff, a minister in the Church of Christ, baptized Dahmer, he visited Dahmer weekly and discussed the prospects of death.
  • In November 1994, Dahmer was accompanying two fellow inmates. They were left unsupervised for about twenty minutes.
  • At around 8:10 am, Dahmer was found lying on the floor with severe injuries in his head and face.
  • He was rushed to the nearby hospital where he was pronounced dead after an hour.

Plays, Documentaries and Movies depicting the life of Jeffrey Dahmer

  • The Secret Life: Jefrey Dahmer, released in 1993, was based on him, Carl Crew portrayed as Dahmer.
  • A biographical movie on Dahmer was released on 2002.
  • Raising Jeffrey Dahmer, released in 2006, revolved around Dahmer’s life.
  • In 2012, The Jeffrey Dahmer Files was premiered. In 2017, My Friend Dahmer was released.
  • The documentary, The Trial of Jeffrey Dahmer was released in 1992.
  • From November 1993 to May 2020, many TV movies and documentaries were released that revolved around Jeffrey Dahmer.

Reference Link

Jeffrey Dahmer- FAQs

Did Jeffery Dahmer eat his victims?

Yes, Jeffrey Dahmer ate him victims’ hearts, livers and other body parts.

Did Dahmer go to the White House?


What happened to Dahmer’s brother?

When Dahmer’s brother was born, he named him David.

Who was Jeffrey’s first kill?

Jeffrey first murdered Steven Hicks.

What was found in Jeffrey’s house?

During the thorough search of the apartment four severed heads, seven skulls, two skeletons, a pair of hands, preserved penises, mummified scalp,  blood drippings, two human hearts, portions of arms and legs, torso and other human organs were found. 74 polaroid pictures of dismemberment of victims were also found.