Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Jeffrey Dahmer

Deadly Ritual

Dahmer's ritual for luring, murdering and disposing of his victims was usually the same. He invited the men to his apartment to watch sexually-explicit videos or to pose for photos. He crushed up his prescribed sedatives and served them in drinks. Once drugged, Dahmer strangled them with his bare hands or with a leather strap. He frequently had sex with the corpses and later masturbated on them.

Before any cleanup began, Dahmer reached for his Polaroid to capture the entire experience so that he could remember each and every murder. Then he cut open their torsos. He was fascinated by the color of the viscera and sexually aroused by the heat that the freshly-killed bodies would give off. Finally, he would dismember the men, photographing each stage of the process for future viewing pleasure.

He disposed of most of the bodies, experimenting with various chemicals and acids that would reduce the flesh and bone to a black, evil-smelling sludge, which could be poured down a drain or toilet.

Some parts of the bodies he chose to keep as trophies, frequently the genitals and heads. The genitals were preserved in formaldehyde. The heads were boiled until the flesh came off. Once the skulls were bare, he painted them with gray paint to look like plastic.

 

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