The Chilling Story Behind Jeffrey Dahmer Polaroid Collection

Estimated read time 5 min read

List Of Victims

Victim Date of Death
Steven Hicks June 18, 1978
Steven Tuomi November 20, 1987
James Doxtator January 16, 1988
Richard Guerrero March 24, 1988
Anthony Sears March 25, 1989
Eddie Smith June 14, 1990
Ricky Beeks July 15, 1990
Ernest Miller September 2, 1990
David Thomas September 24, 1990
Curtis Straughter February 18, 1991
Errol Lindsey April 7, 1991
Tony Hughes May 24, 1991
Konerak Sinthasomphone May 27, 1991
Matt Turner June 30, 1991
Jeremiah Weinberger July 5, 1991
Oliver Lacy July 12, 1991
Joseph Bradehoft July 19, 1991

The name Jeffrey Dahmer instantly conjures up images of one of the most twisted serial killers and cannibals in modern history. Dahmer murdered 17 boys and men between 1978 to 1991 in the most gruesome ways imaginable. But perhaps the most haunting evidence of his cruel crimes was his collection of Polaroids found by police when they raided his Milwaukee apartment in 1991.

The Discovery of Dahmer’s Polaroid Stash

On July 22, 1991, Dahmer’s final intended victim, 32-year-old Tracy Edwards, managed to escape and flag down police officers to report being threatened and held captive. When the officers arrived at Dahmer’s apartment, he shockingly made no attempt to resist arrest. He simply directed them to the handcuff key to release Edwards.

But as the officers looked around, they uncovered Dahmer’s horrifying Polaroid collection stored in an open dresser drawer in his bedroom. It contained around 80 photos of his victims in various states of mutilation – beheaded, dismembered, nude, and posed. The grisly pictures provided indisputable evidence of Dahmer’s serial killing spree.

Along with the Polaroids, police also found Dahmer’s tools of murder – a large butcher knife, chemicals, a blood-soaked mattress, a 57-gallon drum of acid, and most disturbingly, severed human heads and body parts stockpiled as trophies in his fridge and freezer.

Why Did Dahmer Take Photos of His Victims?

According to statements Dahmer made after his arrest, he regarded the Polaroids as mementos and keepsakes from his victims. He said they allowed him to “keep his victims with him” even after death. It satisfied his warped desire to have total possession and control over the men and boys he killed.

Dahmer also admitted the photos let him relive the experience of dominating and dismembering his prey. He would use them to indulge his twisted sexual fantasies and necrophilic urges. For Dahmer, the Polaroids were prized trophies memorializing his depraved acts.

Who Were the People in Dahmer’s Polaroids?

Though Dahmer confessed to 17 murders, investigators believe his actual victim count could be higher. Identifying all the individuals in Dahmer’s Polaroids was impossible given the extent of dismemberment depicted.

However, some of Dahmer’s known victims seen in the horrifying Polaroid gallery were:

  • Steven Tuomi, killed in 1987. Dahmer claimed he awoke to find Tuomi dead beside him after a night of drinking.
  • James Doxtator, 14 years old. Murdered by Dahmer in 1988.
  • Richard Guerrero, drugged and killed in 1988 at age 22.
  • Anthony Sears, murdered at age 24 while on a day trip with Dahmer in 1989.
  • Eddie Smith, murdered at age 28 in 1990. He was lured to Dahmer’s place for money and drugs.
  • Ernest Miller, 22 years old when killed in 1990 after meeting Dahmer.
  • David Thomas, murdered in 1991 at age 23. One of the few victims Dahmer displayed remorse for.
  • Curtis Straughter, just 17 when Dahmer drugged, raped, and killed him in 1991.

What Happened to Dahmer’s Gruesome Polaroid Collection?

Following Dahmer’s conviction in 1992 for 15 murders in Wisconsin and a 16th in Ohio, the damning Polaroids were thoroughly documented as evidence by law enforcement before being destroyed.

A limited number of photos remain in cold case files involving Dahmer’s unknown additional victims. But authorities have not released the disturbing images to the public out of respect for the victims and their families.

Dahmer frequently expressed remorse in prison for his despicable crimes before he was killed by a fellow inmate in 1994. But for the loved ones of those captured in his Polaroids, the hurt caused by his sick trophies lives on.

Frequently Asked Questions About Jeffrey Dahmer’s Polaroids

Here are some common questions surrounding Jeffrey Dahmer’s collection of Polaroid photos documenting his victims:

How many Polaroids did police find in Dahmer’s apartment?

When police raided Dahmer’s Milwaukee apartment in 1991, they uncovered around 80 Polaroid photos of his victims in various states of mutilation and dismemberment.

What did Dahmer do with the Polaroids?

Dahmer kept his Polaroid collection of victims in an open dresser drawer in his bedroom. He would view them frequently as “mementos” and to indulge his deviant fantasies.

Why didn’t Dahmer destroy the evidence of his crimes?

Dahmer was compelled to keep the horrifying Polaroids as twisted trophies and souvenirs from his murders. He even hoped to build a “temple” with the remains of his victims.

How did the Polaroids help convict Dahmer?

The Polaroids provided damning photographic proof that Dahmer had dismembered and mutilated numerous victims. They directly refuted his early claims that the body parts were from willing adult volunteers.

Did Dahmer feel remorse for taking the Polaroids?

Though he expressed regret for some of his murders later in life, Dahmer never showed true remorse for violating and exploiting his victims so horrifically, including in photos.

Could the people in the Polaroids be identified?

Due to the extent of dismemberment shown in most Polaroids, identifying all of Dahmer’s victims was impossible. But some were linked forensically to known victims.

The discovery of Jeffrey Dahmer’s appalling Polaroid collection offered a window into the twisted psyche of one of history’s most notorious serial killer. For his 17 known victims, the lurid photos represent exploitation beyond death.

note: The information is not accurate

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