This is exactly what Jeffrey Dahmer’s life was like when he was in prison

Yes, he would play with his food and pretend it was body parts


At the end of the Jeffrey Dahmer series on Netflix, we see a recreation of what life was like in prison for the serial killer, after he was handed 15 life sentences for his horrific crimes. He admitted to the murder of 17 young men and boys, and was told he would never be released from prison.

Not long after his sentencing, Dahmer was murdered by a fellow inmate. This came after his behaviour behind bars rilled up other prisoners. He might not have spent even near his full sentence in prison, but here’s what life was like for Jeffrey Dahmer for the short time he was there.

Jeffrey Dahmer in prison during Netflix series

via Netflix

Jeffrey Dahmer spent three years in prison of his 957 year tariff, before he was murdered

For what he did, Dahmer was handed 15 life sentences, which equated to 957 years in prison. His trial was in early 1992, and ended with him given no chance of parole and told he’d spend the rest of his life in jail. He was sent to Columbia Correctional Institution in Wisconsin.

However, he only spent a total of three years and four months in prison before he was murdered by a fellow inmate. Excluding the time leading up to and during his trial – between his formal sentencing and his death, Dahmer spent two years, nine months and 11 days living in a cell.

Aged 34, Dahmer was beaten to death in prison. Dahmer was on cleaning duty in the prison’s gym bathrooms when he was murdered. He and two other prisoners, Jesse Anderson and Christopher Scarver, were left alone for around 20 minutes, and Scarver killed both men. When prison guards returned, they found the beaten bodies of both Dahmer and Anderson. Dahmer was officially pronounced dead an hour after guards found his body.

Jeffrey Dahmer in prison during Netflix series

via Netflix

In prison, Dahmer would pretend his food was body parts and taunt other inmates

Whilst he was serving his time, due to the attention he and his crimes received, prison officials felt it was safer to keep Dahmer away from the general inmate population. Dahmer was isolated from other prisoners in protective custody and had to be shackled when he wasn’t in his cell. After his first year in prison, Dahmer requested more freedom of movement and interactions with other prisoners. He was permitted to attend classes, eat communal meals and do work duties.

Whilst in prison, Dahmer reportedly had a sick sense of humour. He would tell jokes about cannibalism, taunt prisoners and tell them “I bite”. According to Grunge, he did mould his prison food to resemble body parts and would use ketchup to mimic blood. The pastor in the prison, Roy Ratcliff, also claimed Dahmer hung a Cannibals Anonymous Meeting poster in his cell.

As we saw in the Netflix series, Dahmer did find God whilst in jail. Roy Ratcliff said they often had meetings together and Dahmer did at some points seem remorseful. Dahmer began taking a Bible correspondence course and it was arranged for him to be baptised in the jail.

In an interview in 2015, the man who killed Jeffrey Dahmer said a lot of his motivations were to do with how Dahmer behaved behind bars. Christopher Scarver told the New York Post: “He [Dahmer] crossed the line with some people – prisoners, prison staff. Some people who are in prison are repentant – but Dahmer was not one of them.” He said Dahmer would often get into “heated” exchanges with other prisoners.

A lawyer who worked with Dahmer has said he struggles to believe the claims made about Dahmer in prison, instead claiming taunting other people wasn’t his “style”.

Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story is available now on Netflix. For all the latest Netflix news, drops, quizzes and memes like The Holy Church of Netflix on Facebook. 

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