We'll be profiling 13 serial killers over the course of the 13 days leading up to Halloween. For today's final edition, we meet America's most insane serial killer. Have any suggestions for future articles? Send them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Well, friends, we've reached our final installment in the Killer Countdown series. To give you one more dose of terror that'll put you in the Halloween spirit, we're going to close with a serial killer who's known the world over for his heinous crimes against humanity.
For anyone who's even slightly familiar with the history of serial killers, there's one name that stands out above the rest: Jeffrey Dahmer. Throughout his murderous career, Dahmer committed some of the most disturbing atrocities that the world has ever seen.
Those who knew Jeffrey Dahmer growing up described him as being an odd character.
Dahmer had a fairly normal upbringing. He grew up in a middle-class household with both parents. However, there was a great deal of fighting between his parents before their divorce.
During these early years, Dahmer developed an interest in animals...specifically, dead animals. After school, Dahmer roamed the streets of his small Ohio town collecting the carcasses from the side of the road. He then dissected and dismembered them. Once, over a chicken dinner, a young Dahmer asked his father what would happen if he placed the chicken bones in bleach.
By the time he reached high school, Dahmer -- who was definitely a loner -- had begun abusing alcohol.
He regularly snuck alcohol into his classes. It was also during this time that Dahmer realized he was gay, although he did not reveal that to anyone. As he explored his sexuality, he found extreme arousal in fantasies that involved him dominating a submissive individual.
Soon after he graduated high school, Dahmer's parents divorced. Both of them moved out of the family home, but Dahmer, since he was 18, chose to remain.
That summer, he killed his first victim -- a hitchhiker. Dahmer invited the young man into his home, plied him with alcohol, and then beat him to death. Once he was dead, Dahmer dissected his body before burying it in the backyard.
After failed stints in college and the army, Dahmer found himself back in Ohio, and then in Milwaukee. First, he lived with his grandmother. However, she soon asked him to leave. She cited his habit of bringing home young men at all hours of the night and the strange smells that were coming from the basement as the reasons for kicking him out. The smell was coming from the decaying bodies of his victims.
In May of 1990, Dahmer moved into apartment 213 on 924 North 25th Street in Milwaukee. This is where he committed most of his murders.
Dahmer's signature was luring victims back to his apartment, drugging them, killing them, and having sex with their bodies. After he had sex with them, he dismembered the corpses. He often stored and ate their body parts. After his arrest, Dahmer told police that he had trained himself to see other people simply as sex objects.
His main gripe with the living was that they moved during intercourse. As a way to solve this problem without killing, Dahmer attempted on several occasions to create so-called "sex zombies." First, he drugged his victims. After that -- instead of killing them -- he attempted to lobotomize them. He did so by drilling holes in their skulls and pouring corrosive chemicals or boiling water onto their brains. This clearly didn't work. What's more, the victims usually regained consciousness halfway through.
Dahmer was able to kill a total of 17 victims before the police caught up with him.
In July of 1991, Dahmer lured a man, Tracy Edwards, to his apartment under the pretense of keeping him company and drinking beer with him. Back at the apartment, the killer brandished a knife and attempted to handcuff Edwards, but only managed to get them on one wrist.
Edwards was then able to talk Dahmer down and get him to relax enough for him to punch Dahmer and make an escape. Edwards' problem was that he still had the handcuffs on one hand. He managed to flag down a passing police car, and they all returned to Dahmer's apartment to get the key from him.
That's when they discovered the freak show that was hidden inside.
After he was arrested, police found an extensive collection of horrifying artifacts. Inside Dahmer's closet, they found seven human skulls. They also discovered four severed heads in the kitchen. Inside the refrigerator, they found two human hearts, along with a collection of limbs. The freezer contained an entire human torso.
While in the apartment, investigators collected several preserved penises, some severed hands, and a collection of 74 Polaroids showing the dismemberment of various victims.
At trial, Dahmer was found guilty on all counts and sentenced to life in prison.
The deranged killer was murdered in prison by another inmate while on work detail. The inmate claimed that God told him to do it.
Thus ended the life of one of the most twisted individuals that the world has ever known. I'd say rest in peace, but I think he deserves at least a little bit of discomfort in the afterlife.