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  • Writer's picturePierson Hurst

"Dahmer - Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story" True and False

“Dahmer - Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story”, it’s the hottest show on Netflix (top #10 in TV Shows Today) and has been since its release on September 21st, 2022. The topic of Jeffrey Dahmer doesn’t appear to be going anywhere with the recent release of Conversations with a Killer: The Jeffrey Dahmer Tapes which is #5 in TV Shows Today on Netflix.

The show was mostly accurate to the events that occurred, but with all of the hype surrounding “Dahmer - Monster”, it can be overlooked that some actual events of the story changed, or left out to make the show more entertaining.

Here are 5 disturbing things that the show “DAHMER” got right:

  1. Tracy Edwards did escape and lead police officers to Dahmer.

Similarly to how it was depicted in the first episode of the show, victim Tracy Edwards did indeed escape Jeffrey Dahmer. Although the show did not play out identically to Edwards’ description of the events, the key points of him hitting Dahmer, Dahmer trying to pull him back into the apartment, and him leading the police back to the apartment are correct. Another true part of that scene was when the police found photos which documented some of Jeffrey Dahmer’s atrocities.

  1. The fair incident happened.

One very surreal scene which depicted Jeffrey Dahmer “exposing himself” at a public fair before being arrested for indecent exposure actually happened. He was arrested and fined $50.00.

  1. The Police escorted Konerak Sinthasomphone back to Dahmer’s apartment.

The storyline of Konerak Sinthasomphone was true. Sinthasomphone was lured to Dahmer’s apartment with promises of free alcohol. He was drugged and assaulted. Sinthasomphone was able to escape the apartment and police were alerted. Upon their arrival Dahmer lied to them telling them that Sinthasomphone was his boyfriend, that he had been drinking, and that they got into a fight. The police, seeing the bloody and intoxicated 14 year old, believed Dahmer’s lie and returned the boy to the apartment he had escaped from. Jeffrey Dahmer murdered him that night.

  1. Police let Dahmer go with a victim's remains in the back seat.

Jeffrey Dahmer’s first victim was a man named Steven Hicks. After killing him, Dahmer cut him up and put him in trash bags, then loaded him into his car. While looking for a place to dispose of the body Dahmer, who was intoxicated and swerving all over the road, was pulled over by police. Police could have saved the lives of at least 15 other victims had they checked the bags in the back of Dahmer’s car. Instead they checked his license, saw that he was 18, and let him go without even so much as a warning.

  1. Dahmer did call members of his victims' families.

As depicted in the show, Jeffrey Dahmer was known to call the families of his victims and tell them not to bother looking for their loved one. One victim’s sister Caroline Smith reported Dahmer saying, “Don’t even bother looking for your brother anymore.” When asked why he said, “Because he’s dead.” When asked how he knew, Dahmer replied, “Because I killed him.”

Though not every inaccuracy depicted in the show, here are 5 things that “DAHMER” changed, got wrong, or left out:

  1. Dahmer did not drink bags of blood.

Jeffrey Dahmer did indeed work at the Milwaukee Blood Plasma Center, but he did not take and drink bags of blood. Although the truth isn’t much better, Dahmer reportedly wanted to see how blood tasted so he snuck a vial to the roof of the center and attempted to drink it, however, he disliked the taste and spat it out.

  1. Dahmer was never proven to have killed Dean Vaughn.

Dean Vaughn was a 28 year old African American man who was found strangled in his apartment. In the show he is shown to be talking to Jeffrey Dahmer and it is alluded to that Dahmer killed him. Despite many people believing that Dahmer killed him, it has never been proven. After being caught Jeffrey Dahmer admitted to killing 17 people and helped authorities locate their remains. In the case of Vaughn, however, Dahmer denied killing him on two separate occasions. First when Vaugn was found, and again after being arrested on other charges. The sad truth is that it is unlikely the killer will ever be properly identified.

  1. Glenda Cleveland did not live at the Oxford Apartments.

Despite her appearance as Jeffrey Dahmer’s neighbor in the show Glenda Cleveland actually lived in the apartments beside the apartments that Jeffrey Dahmer lived in. The Glenda Cleveland in the show is more of a mixture of the real life Glenda Cleveland and Pamela Bass (Dahmer’s actual neighbor).

  1. Pamela Bass lived across the hall from Dahmer.

As previously stated, Pamela Bass was Jeffrey Dahmer’s actual neighbor in the Oxford Apartments. In the show Dahmer gives a sandwich with questionable meat (human?) in it. This is based on true events, Pamela Bass was given a sandwich from Dahmer before and has been quoted saying, “I have probably eaten someone’s body part.”

  1. Dahmer did not wear his glasses for the entire trial.

In the show's depiction of the trial Jeffrey Dahmer is shown to be wearing his glasses for the duration of the trial. This is likely to make sure that we associate Evan Peters (the actor) with Dahmer as the glasses were key to his costume. However, in reality Dahmer chose to not wear his glasses so he wouldn’t have to look the jury or his victims’ families in the face.


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