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We’re still talking about last weekend’s Dahmer on Dahmer: A Serial Killer Speaks.
The two-part special takes a deep dive into the life and death of Jeffrey Dahmer, producing a chilling portrait of the cannibal killer.
And good news, true crime obsessives: Dahmer on Dahmer: A Serial Killer Speaks is now available to stream in its entirety on Oxygen.com. Here are four revelations from the special to whet your appetite.
1. Dahmer’s family speculates that his troubled life may have started at birth.
What sets Dahmer on Dahmer apart is its attention the lesser-discussed details of the killer’s life, especially his early years. Dahmer’s mother Joyce struggled with mental illness while pregnant with Jeffrey, consuming a variety of prescription medications. Joyce’s conflicted relationship with her son continued after Jeffrey’s birth. Joyce rarely touched her newborn son, and stopped other family members from holding the baby.
Joyce’s manner changed upon the birth of David, Jeffrey’s little brother. She showed more affection to David—a discrepancy that young Jeffrey noticed. Upon her separation with Lionel, the boys’ father, Joyce took David to live with her. Jeffrey remained with Lionel.
2. Dahmer’s first attempt at murder occurred when he was only 15.
Dahmer on Dahmer offers a disturbing look at the killer’s first attempt at murder, which occurred when Dahmer was just fifteen years old. Dahmer was obsessed with a male jogger who routinely traversed his neighborhood. Often, he hid in the woods along the jogger’s path to watch the man run by.
One day, Dahmer arrived at his usual hiding spot—with a baseball bat in hand. He intended to assault and likely kill the man. The jogger happened not to pass by this day, thus thwarting Dahmer’s plot.
Dahmer let go of his obsession soon thereafter; he did not attempt to harm the jogger again. His first murder occurred just three years later, after graduating from high school.
3. Dahmer encountered law enforcement multiple times throughout his murder spree.
Dahmer was arrested in 1991, after claiming the lives of 17 people over a thirteen-year period. Yet the killer crossed paths with authorities a number of times prior to his capture.
In 1978, on the night of his first-ever murder, Dahmer was pulled over by police. The eighteen-year-old had been driving erratically, and was actually on his way to the local dump to dispose of the remains of his victim, Steven Hicks. The officer approached Dahmer’s vehicle and shined a light inside; he noticed a green garbage bag (which secretly contained Hicks’ remains). Nevertheless, the officer had little reason to suspect foul play, and likely attributed the young man’s nervousness to the traffic stop itself. Dahmer received a ticket, and was let go.
In 1982, four years after his first murder, Dahmer was arrested for indecent exposure; he revealed himself to a group of women and children at a public park. Dahmer acknowledged his crime before the judge, and seemingly expressed remorse. The judge sentenced him to a fine rather than jail time.
In 1991, a 14-year-old boy that Dahmer had kidnapped and injected with hydrochloric acid—in an attempt to produce a real-life zombie—managed to escape the killer’s Milwaukee apartment after Dahmer went on a beer run. The teen stumbled toward a group of women. Startled by the sight of a bloody and naked person, the women called the police.
Dahmer then returned to the scene, and met with responding officers. He calmly explained that the teen was his boyfriend and they were in the midst of a lovers’ quarrel. The officers accepted Dahmer’s version of events. In fact, the officers accompanied Dahmer and the 14-year-old back to Dahmer’s apartment. Not long after the officers departed, Dahmer killed his captive.
Dahmer on Dahmer plays the phone call the women made to police. The discomfort and concern in their voices is heartbreaking—and it’s frightening to know that they were inches away from the Milwaukee Cannibal himself.
4. Dahmer stands accused of additional crimes.
The most shocking revelation from the Dahmer on Dahmer special: Dahmer stands accused of at least two more violent rapes. Two soldiers who served with Dahmer during his years in the service say that he raped them. One claims he was raped once, after being drugged. The other claims that he was raped repeatedly over the course of 17 months while he was Dahmer’s roommate.
After his arrest in 1991, Dahmer confessed to a long list of rapes, murders, dismemberments, and acts of cannibalism. Yet these new accounts beg the question: Is the Dahmer case truly closed? Could more Dahmer victims still be out there? Are there additional murders waiting to be connected to the cannibal killer?
All this and more can be found in Dahmer on Dahmer: A Serial Killer Speaks. Missed the two-part special on Oxygen? You can now watch both episodes on Oxygen On Demand or Oxygen.com. Stream it tonight and relive the case the shocked the nation.
All images: Courtesy of Oxygen