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DORIAN about THE CRIMINAL PROFILER

Updated on March 18, 2013
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ABOUT CRIMINAL PROFILING AS A JOB

Since the film ‘The Silence of the Lambs (1991) with Anthony Hopkins as the cannibal Hannibal Lecter, there have been several hypes concerning the ‘job’ of criminal or offenders profilers, who are asked to help with the research of especially serial-killers.

What does the job of the profiler consist of?

Profiling in criminal research is a means of research regarding the physical and social behavior and attitude of possible perpetrators or suspected serial killers in order to find the true killer or to avoid new killings.

When are profilers hired?

Within the crime scene investigation the profiler mostly comes in at a later stage in the investigation.

1st stage of CSI: search for clues en evidence made by factual evidence:

  • Evidence at the place of the crime
  • How was the crime committed
  • Factual finds at the place of the crime
  • Investigation of the (direct) area where the crime was committed
  • Finding witnesses etc.

2nd stage of CSI:

  • Who is the victim?
  • What has happened?
  • Why has the victim been murdered? (Is it evident why?)

3nd stage of CSI: calling in a profiler

Only when it is evident that somebody is at work who may be a serial-killer (which means he or she is expected to kill more than 3 people in a more or less similar way, under more or less similar circumstances) a profiler may be contracted to look at the cases.

How does one become a profiler?

It is not merely a matter of following a specific study to become a profiler. Some people are part of the police force and show a particular talent for ‘finding’ people on ‘hunches’ or because they seem to have a ‘nose’ for it. Others have had an education as a psychologist, often specializing as a criminal psychologist as it is a great help to have (factual) psychological insight in the behavior of a perpetrator.

Apart from the ‘factual’ criminal profiler, CSI can also call in the help of esoteric or spiritual profilers. It may be clear that those are mostly used as ‘a last resort’ help: CSI is a factual research, normally. The esoteric or spiritual profiler has totally different tools to work with. Their tools are their 'own' and are mostly found within the scope of spiritual insights. Although looked upon with mistrust those spiritual profilers are sometimes known to have been extraordinarily helpful to cases that were almost impossible to solve.

Why ask the help of a profiler?

  • When the perpetrator is unknown and there are hardly any clues as who is behind the serial-killers. (Needle-in-the-haystack-principle.)
  • The profiler may get a good insight in all the facts that are turning up at the CSI such as factual forensic (crime-laboratory) research to put it all together into a behavioral and social profile, his psychological problems and possible motives.
  • Motive is an important thing: without motive it is hard to find the perpetrator. The profiler will always be attentive about clues regarding motive.

Profiling is ‘less romantic than it may seem: Real-life criminal profiling involves painstaking detective work. Analysis of the physical evidence found at crime scenes can be grueling work, which may take weeks, months or even years. In this respect the profiler’s job does not differ from ‘plain’ detective work. Deductive reasoning will be the key to finding the profile of the criminal. The profiler needs to take about all the known facts into account and possibly search for the facts that are still a mystery. After having studied all the facts (and ‘hunches’) there will be a reconstruction of the crime regarding the motive of the perpetrator. It is evident that the work is hard, painstaking and may take a long time.

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    • Afanasiya Lukina profile image

      Afanasiya Lukina 

      5 years ago

      Not my sort of job. I did look at silence of the lambs. Also Eerie.

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