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It was a bloody end for the man whose crimes turned the stomachs of an entire nation.

Beaten so severely he was difficult to recognize, Jeffrey Dahmer died an hour after he was found on the floor of a prison bathroom he was assigned to clean.An inmate at the maximum-security Columbia Correctional Institution in Portage was being held in solitary confinement Tuesday in the death of Dahmer, who admitted killing, mutilating and sometimes cannibalizing 17 young men and boys.

Christopher J. Scarver also was suspected of critically injuring another murderer from Milwaukee, authorities said. Dahmer and Jesse Anderson both suffered head injuries in the attack Monday.

Corrections Secretary Michael Sullivan said Tuesday that authorities were still investigating the motive, but he did not believe race played a part. Scarver is black; 11 of Dahmer's victims were black and Anderson, a white man, blamed his wife's murder on two nonexistent black men.

"I am not assuming race was a motivating factor," Sullivan told

NBC's "Today" show. "With the information I have at this time, in fact, we believe it is not a factor."

He also said investigators knew of no connection between Scarver and any of Dahmer's victims.

A bloody broom handle was found at the scene, but Sullivan said he didn't know if it was the murder weapon. "Their heads could have been smashed against a wall," he speculated.

In July, an inmate tried to cut Dahmer's throat during a chapel service, but the makeshift razor blade weapon fell apart and Dahmer escaped with a scratch.

Sullivan said the assaults were not connected: "The previous attack was an isolated incident by an individual who was trying to do something that he would be noticed for so he could be exported out of the country to his own country."

Dahmer's stepmother said he and his family expected he would be killed. His mother said if Dahmer had had a choice, "he'd have let this happen to him."