Inferring offender characteristics

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Book Chapter

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Turvey, B. E. (2011). Inferring offender characteristics. In B. E. Turvey (Ed.) Criminal profiling: An introduction to behavioural evidence analysis (403-446). Oxford, United Kingdom: Academic Press, Elsevier.

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2011 HERDC submission. FoR code: 160201

© Copyright Elsevier Ltd., 2012. All rights reserved.





Criminal profiling refers to the inference of offender characteristics. As we have discussed, there are more than a few ways to make these inferences- none of them equal. The analyst can predict offender characteristics based on statistical models, prior research, or experience (i.e., homo-inductive reasoning); the analyst can use hard physical evidence to make deductions about physical characteristics (DNA to give sex and race, hairs to give hair color, footwear impression to give shoe size, etc); or the analyst can use analytical logic, critical thinking, and the scientific method to make deductions about offender relational and psychological characteristics based on an analysis of crime scene behavior (e.g,, behavioral evidence analysis).

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