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Police Records Show Dahmer’s Family Didn’t Report Alleged Abuse of Son

August 1, 1991 GMT

MILWAUKEE (AP) _ Jeffrey L. Dahmer’s father told probation agents his son was abused by a neighbor boy at age 8, possibly leading to sexual problems, but the incident never was reported to police, authorities said Wednesday.

In a jailhouse interview Wednesday with police, however, Dahmer denied he had been sexually or physically abused as a child, a police official in Ohio said.

Lionel Dahmer told his son’s probation agent of the alleged abuse in a telephone call April 27, 1990, 22 years after he said it happened, according to the agent’s notes filed with the state probation division in Milwaukee.


Jeffrey Dahmer, 31, has confessed to killing 17 people over 13 years, including one in Ohio and three at his grandmother’s house in suburban Milwaukee, police said. Last week, police found 11 mutilated bodies in his Milwaukee apartment.

The probation notes don’t specify the nature of the alleged abuse, which would have occurred while the Dahmers were living in Bath Township, Ohio. But the notes quoted the father as saying the incident ″may be reason why (Jeffrey Dahmer) has problems with sexuality issues.″

The notes don’t specify the age or name of the neighbor boy or other details.

Lionel Dahmer couldn’t be reached for comment Wednesday. There was no answer at his home in Medina, Ohio. PPG Industries in Pittsburgh, where he works, said he would be out of the office for a few days.

Capt. John Gardner of the Bath Township Police Department said his agency asked Milwaukee police to question Dahmer about his father’s statement.

Dahmer answered that ″he was never abused, sexually or physically, as a child.″ Gardner said.

The probation records also said Jeffrey Dahmer told his agent he was homosexual: ″that’s the way it is ... client appears to still be struggling with this ... client states he knows he prefers male partners but client feels guilty about this,″ the records said.

Dahmer’s lawyer, Gerald Boyle, said through a spokeswoman he has no knowledge of his client being either physically or sexually abused as a boy.

Capt. John Gardner of the Bath Township Police Department said his agency was aware of Lionel Dahmer’s statement in probation records but had no record of a complaint from the Dahmer family about any abuse of Jeffrey Dahmer in 1968 when the family lived in the suburb of Akron.


″He didn’t call us. I have been here for 21 years. I know the system,″ Gardner said.

In Bath Township, investigators continued their search Wednesday of Dahmer’s childhood home, looking for the remains of Steven Hicks, 18, a hitchhiker police said Dahmer has confessed to killing in 1978.

Authorities removed part of a bookcase from a remodeled room to inspect the floor where Dahmer told authorities he killed Hicks. A stain found on the floor was determined not to be blood, Summit County Coroner William Cox said.

So far police have located more than 50 bone fragments at the house, including one from the pelvis, a long bone from a lower extremity, a rib and forearm, Cox said.

County Prosecutor Lynn Slaby said he believes there is enough evidence now to seek a murder indictment against Dahmer in Hicks’ death.

Dahmer has admitted he strangled Hicks with a barbell, cut him up, buried him, later dug up the remains, scraped the flesh off and smashed the bones with a hammer before scattering them over the two-acre property, police said.

In Milwaukee, Dahmer has told police he lured men to his apartment, drugged and strangled them, dismembered their bodies and took photos of the victims in various stages of mutilation, court records said.

Dahmer, a former candy factory worker, also told police he had sex with three victims, including one after death, boiled some skulls to preserve them and kept one man’s heart in a freezer to eat later.

Dahmer was convicted of sexually molesting a 13-year-old boy in 1988 and was on probation when police discovered the bodies in his apartment July 22.

Although there is no police record that the Dahmer family ever reported Jeffrey Dahmer was abused, the family had lodged other complaints with the Bath department, Gardner said.

Those complaints included larceny in 1968, destruction of property and low- flying planes in 1969, garbage dumped on their lawn in 1970, a dog bite in 1971 and hunting complaint in 1974, Gardner said.

Police also investigated domestic disputes involving Dahmer’s parents in 1975 and 1980, Gardner said. The couple was divorced in 1978.