An Empirical Assessment of Content in Criminal Psychological Profiles

Although criminal psychological profiling has been in use by law enforcement agencies for almost three decades, there is a paucity of empirical research examining the technique. A fundamental issue that has received little attention is the empirical evaluation of information contained in profiles co...

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Bibliographic Details
Published in:International journal of offender therapy and comparative criminology
Main Author: Kocsis, Richard N.
Format: Electronic/Print Article
Language:Undetermined language
Published: 2003
In:International journal of offender therapy and comparative criminology
Year: 2003, Volume: 47, Issue: 1, Pages: 37-46
Online Access: doi
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Summary:Although criminal psychological profiling has been in use by law enforcement agencies for almost three decades, there is a paucity of empirical research examining the technique. A fundamental issue that has received little attention is the empirical evaluation of information contained in profiles composed by professional profilers. In this study, a group of profilers, police officers, psychologists, college students, and self-declared psychics were given information from a solved murder investigation, after which the participants composed a written profile predicting the probable offender. Professional profilers tended to write more lengthy profiles that contained more information about the nonphysical attributes of the offender and more information about the crime scene or the offender's behavior before, during, and after the crime. These results are discussed in terms of their implication for our broader understanding of the technique of profiling and future directions for research into profiling
ISSN:0306-624X