AKRON, Ohio -- Serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer pleaded guilty Friday to aggravated murder in the 1978 death of a young Ohio man and was sentenced to life in prison without possibility of parole.
Dahmer, 31, who is serving 15 life imprisonment terms in Wisconsin, was sentenced in Summit County Common Pleas Court for killing Steven M. Hicks, 18, of Coventry Township. He was brought to Akron for the Ohio case.
Family members of Hicks made impassioned pleas before sentencing, urging Judge James Williams to sentence Dahmer to the maximum possible penalty.
'My son will be 18 forever,' said Hicks' mother, Martha Hicks. 'He was an average teen of the '70s with a life of love.'
'Dahmers' acts made me question my sanity, my motherhood, my religion,' she said. 'Dahmer murdered and destroyed one member of my family, but he didn't destroy the love we shared.'
The sentence imposed by Williams is to run consecutive to the 15 life terms he is serving at the Columbia Correctional Institution in Portage, Wis. It was the maximum sentence allowed because Ohio did not have the death penalty in 1978.
Dahmer, wearing a dark, pin-stripe suit, spoke little during the hearing. He answered yes when asked by Williams whether he understood his rights and to a series of legal questions asked by the judge.
Summit County prosecutor Lynn Slaby said one of the reasons he wanted Dahmer brought back to Ohio to face charges was to give Hicks' relatives a chance to express their feelings.
Dahmer has said Hicks was the first of 17 men and boys he killed and dismembered. Dahmer said he gave the hitchhiking Hicks a ride, killed him, dismembered the body in a crawl space of his Bath Township home, disposed of the flesh, smashed the bones and buried them behind the house.
On Feb. 17, Milwaukee County Judge Laurence Gram Jr. sentenced the former chocolate factory worker to 15 consecutive life terms in prison -- sentences so long he will not be eligible for parole for more than 900 years.
'I now know I will be in prison the rest of my life,' Dahmer said in a statement he read to the Wisconsin court. 'I know that I will have to turn to God to help me get through each day. I should have stayed with God. I tried and failed and created a holocaust. Thank God there will be no more harm that I can do. I believe that only the Lord Jesus Christ can save me from my sins.'
Gram imposed consecutive mandatory life sentences plus 10 years on the first two murders and consecutive life sentences on each of the other counts. The sentences were the maximum allowed under Wisconsin law.
In Milwaukee, Dahmer pleaded guilty but insane and was subsequently found sane by a jury.