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Inductive Versus Deductive Profiling Inductive Criminal Investigative Assessments Deductive Criminal Investigative Assessments Goals in Profiling Goal 1: To Provide the Criminal Justice System With a Social and Psychological Assessment of the Offender Goal 2: To Provide the Criminal Justice System With a Psychological Evaluation of Belongings Found in the Possession of the Offender Goal 3: To Provide Interviewing Suggestions and Strategies Profiling: An Art, Not a Science Conclusion
PROFILING VIOLENT CRIMES
istorically, crime and criminals have galvanized the attention of law-abiding citizens. Whatever the reason, be it the romance of a Capone or a Dillinger, or the utter lack of any understanding of how or why criminals can do what they do, books, TV, and movies flood the market with police and crime. Russell Vorpagel (1998), an ex-FBI agent, speaks of his own contributions to the development of psychological profiling in the early years with the FBI. In his book, Profiles in Murder: An FBI Legend Dissects Killers and Their Crimes, he claims that he along with Ressler, Douglas, and others were, pioneers in the process of crime scene analysis. Further, Vorpagel states that he was instrumental in helping Detective Ray Biondi in Sacramento, California, with the Richard Trenton Chase murder case. Unfortunately, Vorpagel was not able to profile Chase’s suicide by pills while Chase was in Vacaville prison. Robert Ressler, another retired FBI agent, speaks of the same Richard Chase case in his book co-authored with Tom Shachtman, Whoever Fights Monsters (1992), but with only one line devoted to the help of Vorpagel in developing a separate profile, amazingly similar to Ressler’s own: “The fact that Chase so precisely fit the profile that I had drawn up in conjunction with Russ Vorpagel was gratifying to me . . .” (p. 9). Ressler continues to mention other serial killers, such as Ted Bundy, John Wayne Gacy, David Berkowitz, Edmund Kemper, Peter Sutcliffe, Jeffrey Dahmer, and mass killer Richard Speck. Unfortunately there is no mention of an interviewing methodology used in the meetings. Ressler has published another book with Shachtman entitled I Have Lived in the Monster: Inside the Minds of the World’s Most Notorious Serial Killers (1997). In this book, interesting stories abound that relate to Ressler’s work with many serial killers during his career in the FBI. Not to be outdone, John Douglas and his co-author Mark Olshaker wrote Mind Hunter: Inside the FBI’s Elite Serial Crime Unit (1995). In this book, Douglas lays claim to a friendship with Thomas Harris, the author of The Silence of the Lambs (1981), Red Dragon (1988), and Hannibal (1999). He takes the reader along the steps in his work in several major cases and the effects that the profiling work has on mind and health. The book jacket claims that he is the model for Jack Crawford in Harris’s book The Silence of the Lambs, a claim, however, that Harris denies (T. Harris, personal interview, June 20, 2000). The book jacket also says that Douglas has interviewed dozens of serial killers and assassins—including Richard Speck, Charles Manson, and James Earl Ray among them. He has published two other books, The Cases That Haunt Us: From Jack the Ripper to JonBenet Ramsey, the FBI’s Legendary
Mindhunter Sheds Light on the Mysteries That Won’t Go Away (Douglas & Olshaker, 1999) and The Anatomy of Motive: The FBI’s Legendary Mindhunter Explores the Key to Understanding and Catching Violent Criminals (Douglas & Olshaker, 2000). Douglas and his co-author lead the reader through several celebrated unsolved homicides. One is the JonBenet Ramsey case, in which...
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