There is a ME in DisMEmber

This is part one of a three part series

There is a ME in DisMEmber

Katie Gary

Jeffery Dahmer was an American serial killer who took the lives of 17 males between 1978 and 1991. Over the course of 13 years, Dahmer sought out men, mostly African-American, at gay bars, malls, and bus stops, lured them home with promises of money or sex, and gave them alcohol laced with drugs before strangling them to death. He would then engage in sex acts with the dead bodies before dismembering them and disposing of them, often keeping their skulls or genitals as souvenirs. But what was his early life like, what made him into the psychopathic killer he was infamous for. 

Dahmer was born in Milwaukee,Wisconsin, on May 21, 1960 to Lionel and Joyce Dahmer. He was described as an energetic and happy child until the age of 4, when surgery to correct a double hernia seemed to effect a change. He became very withdrawn from his family and he disconnected fully when  his younger brother was born. 

By his early teen years, he was disengaged, tense and largely friendless. Dahmer claims that his compulsion toward necrophilia and murder began around the age of 14, but it appears that the breakdown of his parents’ marrage and their divorce a few years later may have been the catalyst for turning these thoughts into actions. 

By the time of his first killing, Dahmer’s alcohol consumption had spun out of control. He dropped out of Ohio State University after one quarter term, and so his father told him to join the military. His drinking problem persisted, and in early 1981, the Army discharged him. Following his discharge, Dahmer returned home to Ohio. 

Police had the opportunity to look deeper in Dauhmer’s abnormal behavior but they didn’t have enough evidence against him. Later that year he was arrested for disorderly conduct, this  prompted his father to send Dahmer to live with his grandmother in Wisconsin, but his alcohol problem continued and he was arrested the following summer for indecent exposure. He was arrested once again in 1986, when two boys accused him of masturbating in front of them. He received a one-year probationary sentence. Little did the police know he was keeping trophies in his home of his victims.