Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Jeffrey Dahmer

Trial Begins with Heavy Security

Dahmer being led into court
Dahmer being led into court

The security surrounding the trial of Jeff Dahmer was unique in Milwaukee's history: "The courtroom was swept for bombs by a dog trained to sniff for explosives, and everyone allowed into the courtroom was searched and checked with a metal detector... In the courtroom, an eight-foot-high barrier was constructed from bullet-resistant glass and steel, designed to isolate Dahmer from the gallery." (Schwartz).

Dahmer's father & step-mother in court
Dahmer's father & step-mother in court

Of the 100 seats that were available, 23 were for reporters, 34 for the families of Dahmer's victims and the remaining 43 for public spectators.

The key players in this legal drama, besides Jeff Dahmer himself, were Judge Laurence C. Gram, Jr., District Attorney Michael McCann, and defense lawyer Gerald Boyle, who had defended Dahmer in the past. Lionel and Shari Dahmer attended every day.


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