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This chapter examines whether criminal profiles actually provide the assistance they are meant to provide - that is, whether they are investigatively relevant or whether they are distracting and of little value to investigators. This chapter discusses some of the critical issues in investigative relevance and presents the results of research conducted by the author. It is shown throughout that the various types of profiles differ greatly in how much they acknowledge, and strive toward, investigative relevance. Before examining the research on investigative relevance, the goals of profiling and the information used and subsequently provided are examined.
This document has been peer reviewed.