FORENSIC PSYCHOLOGY - US TYPOLOGY APPROACH

the US typology approach to offending - forensic psychology

a2 psychology unit 3

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  • Created on: 09-06-12 15:18
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The US `typology' approach to criminal (offender) profiling
Pioneered by members of the FBI, the approach relies on the creation of general typologies of
criminal behaviour and motivation based on interviews with captured criminals. The aim was to
identify the major personality characteristics of serious offenders and how they differed from
non-offenders. This lead FBI officers to develop theoretical frameworks for distinguishing between
types of offender, for instance between `organised' and `disorganised' offenders. It was suggested
that the crime scene revealed clear evidence of `organised' and `disorganised' offenders: this
information could then be used to draw up a profile which would help the police to narrow down
their pool of suspects.
`Organised' characteristics:
Evidence of planning
Victim targeted
Victim personalised
Controlled conversation
Crime scene reflects control
Victim submissive
Aggressive acts prior to death
Body hidden
Use of restraints
Weapons and evidence absent
`Disorganised' characteristics:
Spontaneous offence
Victim or location known
Victim depersonalised
Minimal conversation
Crime scene random or sloppy
Sudden violence to victim
Minimal use of restraints
Sexual acts after death
Body left in view
Weapon and evidence present

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