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Lecture

PSYC 3310 Lecture Notes - Psychasthenia, Deductive Reasoning, Snow Goose


Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYC 3310
Professor
Gwen Jenkins

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"Retroclassification"-- goal: to construct accurate profile/description of perpetrator
Draws inferences about perpetrator's personality, behavior, motivation
Criminal profiler-- psychological consultant or investigator who examines evidence from crime
scenes, victims, witnesses
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Techniques pioneered by FBI's Behavioral Science Unit, Quantico, Virginia, 1970s
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Criminal Profiling: Brief Overview
Approximately 12 in US, maybe 1 in Canada [all trained by FBI]
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Training controlled by law-enforcement in US & Canada
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Profilers mostly psychologists in UK & Netherlands
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"The key attribute necessary to be a good profiler is judgement-- a judgement based primarily
on the analysis of facts and figures, but on instinct…" (Douglas & Olshaker, 1997, p. 15)
[Criminal profiling is not admissible in court]
Expert testimony not admissible at trial-- does not meet court standards
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Want to be a criminal profiler?
Jeffrey MacDonald
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Wife & 2 young children brutally clubbed & stabbed
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Cyril Wecht: Physical evidence fit, psychological profile did not
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To solve mismatches between physical info from crime scene with characteristics of specific
suspect, e.g.,
1.
"...they're stupid", "they hate", "it's what they know best" (Weisman, 1980)
[Edmund Kemper-- smart]
[Ted Bundy-- came from a good home]
Motives: Why criminals do what they do?
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Personality types - ?murder, ?rape, ?fraud
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>50% from largely "intact" families (some dysfunctionality)
IQ scores: 20% < 90, 50% within normal range, 30% > 120
Interviews with 36 male murderers (Ressler et al, 1988)
Backgrounds-- impoverished backgrounds or broken homes?
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To overcome false stereotypes/simplified assumptions about…
2.
Why develop profiles?
#1 Criminal killer in Canada = impaired driving
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"According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, MVCs are the leading cause of
death among individuals between the ages of 1 and 34 years and the 8th leading cause of death
across all ages… The World Health Organization has estimated that by the year 2020 MVCs will rank
second..."
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Impaired driving: 74,331 (charges laid) in 2002 [DON'T NEED TO KNOW THE NUMBER]
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Sexual Assault: 22, 136 (~6% of sexual assaults reported)
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Stereotypes about Crime Statistics
Ch. 4: Criminal Profiling Pt. 1
Thursday, May 10, 2012
1:00 PM
Class Notes - Midterm Page 1
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Sexual Assault: 22, 136 (~6% of sexual assaults reported)
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Arson: n= 13,504 (deaths unknown)
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Homicides: n = 605 (approx. 25% involved firearms, mostly gang-related, 22% involved knives, 18%
physical force)
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Serial rape, serial homicide, serial arson, serial bombing
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Serial arson-- 3 or more fires at different times, emotional cooling off period, targets
generally random
Spree arson-- 3 or more fires in succession, no cooling off period
Mass arson-- 3 or more fires in the same location in limited period
[difference between spree and mass is that mass is in the same location]
Organized-- set fires after stress trigger, planned, methodical, target selected
Disorganized-- opportunists, target random, more evidence than organized arson
Classification by behavior (Douglas et al., 1992)
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Vandalism, profit, excitement, revenge, crime concealment
[REVENGE IS MOST COMMON]
Classification by motive [MUST KNOW WHICH MOTIVE IS MOST POPULAR]
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Profile-- "young white male-- loner with history of problems" (p. 73)
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Arsonists-- few caught, few witnesses, little evidence
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Profiling: Which Crimes? [ON TEST]
"…biographical sketch of behavioral patterns, trends, and tendencies." (p. 75, text)
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Personality & motivations of offender,
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Signature
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Sex, age, race,
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Something called sociopsychological profile
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May include:
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What is a Criminal Profile?
Autopsies by Dr. Phillips & Dr. Bond
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"A man of great physical strength" (because he subdued victims easily)
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"A man of great coolness and daring" (because crimes committed in public places)
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"… likely to be a quiet, inoffensive looking man probably middle-aged and neatly and respectably
dressed" (because he did not call attention to himself)
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"...habit of wearing a cloak or overcoat" (because he hid blood on clothes and hands)
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"solitary and eccentric… without regular occupation" (because too corrupt to interact with others)
[probably false]
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Jack the Ripper: First Modern Example [deductive reasoning]
Profiling Historical and Political Figures
1.
Profiling Offenders' Common Characteristics
2.
Profiling Offenders from Crime Scene Characteristics [this one tends to be used most by FBI]
3.
Three approaches to Criminal Profiling
Similarities in personalities, backgrounds, & behaviors of offenders across similar crimes-- inductive
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Approaches: Offender Characteristics
Class Notes - Midterm Page 2
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