The new limited Netflix series Monsters: The Story of Jeffrey Dahmertells the story of American serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer and his murders, which took place between 1978 and 1991. While the show is fictional, the events are based on the true murders he got away with undetected for over a decade.
Jeffrey was almost caught by his neighbor Glenda Cleveland after several calls to the police, but his crimes didn’t come to an end until a man named Tracy Edwards escaped from Jeffrey’s house and led the police to his apartment.
One of Jeffrey’s arresting officers, John Balcerzak, also got into trouble with his partner at the time, Joseph Gabrish.
But where is John Balcerzak now and what role did he play in the murder of one of Jeffrey’s victims? Read on for the details.
Who is John Balcerzak?
John Balcerzak was the arresting officer in the Jeffrey Dahmer case. He checked in with another officer at Jeffrey’s home after Tracy Edwards came forward about his experiences with Jeffrey.
Why was John Balcerzak fired by the police after catching Jeffrey Dahmer?
Jeffrey’s neighbor Glenda Cleveland called the police several times after noticing suspicious behavior.
On one occasion, John Balcerzak and his partner responded to a call to find Cleveland, Sandra Smith, Tina Spivey and Nicole Childress with a 14-year-old boy who was naked, bleeding and in what appeared to be an altered condition. However, by the time police arrived at the scene, Jeffrey had returned and insisted the boy was his 19-year-old lover who had been drinking too much The cinemaholic.
Although the women asked that the boy be taken to a safe place, officers didn’t give the situation much thought and allowed Jeffrey to take him back to his apartment, where he was later killed.
In May 1991, both officers were fired after being found guilty of gross negligence, according to Justia. However, Balcerzak stuck to his decision.
“At the time, with the information that we had — to date, I think we did the right thing, the best we could,” Balcerzak said in his first interview after Jeffrey’s arrest, per AP News.
Both officers also noted that Jeffrey was calm and cooperative when they confronted him about the boy. In response to why Cleveland’s previous calls were not considered, Balcerzak revealed that he felt he had more evidence.
“She wasn’t really there,” he said. “I felt my firsthand knowledge was more informative than what she had heard from anyone else,” per AP News.
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Why was John Balcerzak reinstated?
In 1994, Reserve Judge Robert Parins ruled that dismissing Balcerzak and his partner was too harsh a sentence. He added that both should be reinstated in the police force and would each receive back-payments of $55,000 each AP News.
The Fire and Police Commission also voted 4-1 on the appeal.
Where is John Balcerzak now?
John Balcerzak retired in 2017 and is said to still reside in Milwaukee, Wisconsin The cinemaholic. He also reportedly owns a tavern, per AP News.
Sabrina is an editorial assistant for Women’s Health. When she’s not writing, she can be found jogging, training in mixed martial arts, or reading.