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What Happened To Jeffrey Dahmer After He Was Convicted Of Killing 15 Men And Boys?
Two years into his prison sentence, Jeffrey Dahmer and another prisoner were murdered by Christopher Scarver, who said the serial killer taunted him.
In February 1992, Jeffrey Dahmer was convicted of murdering 15 men and children for which he received 15 life sentences in prison. However, the serial killer only served two years before he was killed by a fellow inmate at the Columbia Correctional Institution in Wisconsin.
Dahmer, 34, was cleaning the toilets near a prison gym on Nov. 28, 1994 when fellow inmate Christopher Scarver, 25, bludgeoned him and prisoner Jesse Anderson, 37, with an iron bar found in the workout room. Security guards found Dahmer in a pool of blood around 8 a.m., according to the New York Times. Dahmer was transported to a local hospital and pronounced dead at 9 a.m. that morning, having suffered two skull fractures and brain trauma.
Anderson was transported to the University of Wisconsin, where he would be pronounced dead on Dec. 1. Anderson had been serving time for the murder of his wife Barbara, whom he bludgeoned and stabbed in April 1992.
As for Scarver, he was ultimately sentenced to two life sentences, according to the New York Post, on top of the life sentence he was already serving for the 1990 death of Steven Lohman.
The prisoner later spoke out about his motivations, telling the New York Post in 2015 that Dahmer frequently taunted him and other prisoners. "He crossed the line with some people — prisoners, prison staff,” Scarver said. “Some people who are in prison are repentant — but he was not one of them.”
Scarver said that he ultimately decided to murder Dahmer after the serial killer and Anderson poked him in the back with a broomstick on their cleaning detail. “I turned around, and [Dahmer] and Jesse were kind of laughing under their breath,” Scarver said. “I looked right into their eyes, and I couldn’t tell which had done it.”
He then cornered Dahmer before asking him about his crimes. “I asked him if he did those things ’cause I was fiercely disgusted. He was shocked. Yes, he was,” Scarver said.
Gerald Boyle, one of Dahmer's defense attorneys, said he doesn't believe Scarver's version of events, having previously spoken to the inmate during an investigation into the murders. "He told me he had a hit list of five guys who he did not feel were worthy of the word murderer because of who and how they killed," Boyle told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel in 2015.
Boyle added that it wasn't in Dahmer's nature to tease others, as Scarver had suggested to the NY Post. "He killed people, but he didn't taunt people. I never saw him do anything that would lead me to believe that he would mimic the deaths that he caused. I just don't believe that," Boyle said.
Scarver's attack was the second time Dahmer had been targeted by a fellow inmate, the first incident taking place in July 1994. An inmate had attempted to slash his neck with a plastic knife, which broke during the attack, leaving Dahmer with a mere scrape.
While Dahmer was offered protection from prison officials, he refused the enhanced measures. “He never told me he was afraid,” his lawyer Stephen Eisenberg told the New York Times.
In September 1995, Dahmer’s remains were cremated with the ashes being split equally between his divorced parents.
His mother, Joyce Felt, wanted his brain to be studied by scientists to gain further understanding about Dahmer’s mental health. “I want to make some small usefulness for my own nightmare. I've located experts who feel research on Jeff's brain could be useful,” Felt told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
However, Dahmer’s father Lionel protested the study and a judge ordered the brain be cremated in December 1995, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Dahmer’s belongings, including a drill and knives, were supposed to be publicly auctioned with the money awarded to the families of his victims, who had sued for damages. However, following outrage over the sale of items used to kill people, Milwaukee real estate magnate Joseph Zilber intervened, raising more than $400,000 to purchase all the items and have them destroyed, according to the Lawrence-Journal World. “He decided this was morally incomprehensible. And it was bad for Milwaukee. He became determined that it would not happen,” Mike Mervis, a spokesperson for Zilber told the New York Times in 1996.