Distribution by Scientific Domains

Kinds of Offenders

  • adolescent offender
  • adult offender
  • disordered offender
  • female juvenile offender
  • female offender
  • homicide offender
  • juvenile offender
  • juvenile sex offender
  • male offender
  • older offender
  • other offender
  • serious juvenile offender
  • sex offender
  • sexual offender
  • violent offender
  • young offender

  • Terms modified by Offenders

  • offender age
  • offender characteristic
  • offender groups
  • offender profiling
  • offender relationship

  • Selected Abstracts

    Sexual Homicide: A Spatial Analysis of 25 Years of Deaths in Los Angeles

    Isaac T. Van Patten Ph.D.
    Abstract: Although it has been frequently studied over the last 100 years, empirical studies of sexual homicide are lacking. The majority of the existing studies have been descriptive in nature. In this study, we consider the spatial geometry of sexual homicide and the impact of time and distance on case solvability. An analysis of sexual homicides (n = 197) from 1980 to 2004 for Los Angeles County was conducted. Offender and victim journey to encounter site, journey to body disposal site, and journey-after-crime trips were examined. Descriptive and bivariate analyses were performed to examine victim, offender and case characteristics. Using logistic regression models both time factors and offense geometries were found to be significant predictors in case solvability. Simpler geometries are significantly more likely to be solved than cases with complex geometries and the longer a case remains unsolved the less likely it is that it will be closed. The results provide support for some of the findings from earlier descriptive studies and extend our understanding of the spatial geometry of sexual homicide. [source]

    Offender and crime characteristics of female serial arsonists in Japan

    Taeko Wachi
    Abstract This study of Japanese female serial arsonists examined their crimes and background characteristics. The data were a sample from the national police register containing arson cases resulting in charges in Japan between 1982 and 2005. Serial arsonists were 6% of the arson offenders and 12% of these were female, resulting in 83 female serial arsonist data sets. The mean age was 37.6 years and 43% were unemployed. Nearly half were married. Only 28% had a documented history of mental problems and 22% had a prior arrest, usually for theft (19%). Female serial arsonists are characterised by going to a place near their home with a lighter and setting fire directly to combustible materials. Non-metric multidimensional scaling was used to analyse 33 variables related to the offences. The arsons could be differentiated in terms of either expressive or instrumental sources of action. Expressive arsons were opportunistic and impulsive acts, motivated by emotional distress. The fires were mostly set close to home. Expressive arsons were characteristic of 66% of the females. Instrumental arsons were often motivated by revenge and involved planned and goal-directed behaviours. They were committed by 13% of the females. Instrumental arsonists tended to travel further from home. Copyright © 2007 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    Forensic Nursing and Multidisciplinary Care of the Mentally Disordered Offender

    Dave Gukhool

    Treating the Juvenile Offender

    Girish Vaidya
    No abstract is available for this article. [source]

    (En)Gendering Responsibilities: Experiences of Parenting a ,Young Offender'

    Abstract: This article discusses how parenting a ,young offender' involves specific additional responsibilities for parents who are already under scrutiny for apparently not taking their parenting responsibilities seriously. With reference to empirical data, three specific parental tasks are considered: managing the family's involvement in the youth justice system, waiting on ,standby' for police and schools, and reporting the child's offences to the police. In doing so, this article highlights the ways in which gender is implicated, and performs a regulatory function, in the day-to-day lives of mothers and fathers who are parenting a ,troublesome' child. [source]

    Do early therapeutic alliance, motivation, and stages of change predict therapy change for high-risk, psychopathic violent prisoners?

    Devon L. L. Polaschek
    Background,Examination of the extent of offenders' engagement in change, and in rehabilitation programmes, is important to understanding success or failure following rehabilitation. In treatment programmes, the alliance between therapist and offender, and the therapy process itself appear central to progress offenders make that may reduce their criminal risk. But research with offenders seldom has measured therapeutic alliance and clinical writing suggests that it is difficult to form an alliance with those not ready to change their behaviour; especially with higher risk and psychopathic offenders. Aims and Methods,This study outlines the course of the therapeutic alliance in an 8-month treatment programme for high-risk, PCL-psychopathic violent prisoners. It examines relationships between early-treatment therapeutic alliance, therapists' global ratings of motivation to change, and initial stage of change on dynamic risk factors. In addition, it investigates which factors best predict who will complete treatment and change behaviourally during treatment. Conclusion,In this challenging, high-needs client group, early-programme stage of change, therapists' perceptions of motivation, therapeutic alliance and psychopathy did not predict how much change prisoners made. Regardless of initial levels, prisoners whose alliance increased the most over the course of treatment made the most change. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    Changes over time in homicides by women: a register-based study comparing female offenders from 1982 to 1992 and 1993 to 2005

    Hanna Putkonen
    Background,The contribution of women to violent offending, including homicide, may be increasing as society changes. Aims,The aim of this paper was to test for trends in homicide by women in Finland. Methods,A retrospective register-based study was conducted by comparing two national cohorts: one from 1982 to 1992 and the other from 1993 to 2005. Results,There was a small increase in the proportion of homicides committed by women over time, but the most striking difference between the cohorts was in the significantly higher frequency of alcohol abuse/dependence in the later cohort and of being under the influence of alcohol during the crime. Fewer perpetrators were regarded as lacking or being of diminished responsibility in the later cohort. The victims of the earlier cohort were emotionally closer to the offender than those of the later one. Conclusions,In Finland, there have been changes in characteristics of women who commit homicide and their crimes over time, with the apparent development of a subgroup of women who kill who are much more like men who kill than women in the 1980s and early 1990s. Preventing substance abuse and marginalization are likely to be important ways of preventing homicide by both female and male perpetrators. Copyright © 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    Relating psychiatric disorders, offender and offence characteristics in a sample of adolescent sex offenders and non-sex offenders

    A.Ph. Van Wijk
    Introduction,Several studies have paid attention to the relationship between psychiatric disorders and adolescent offending but few have distinguished different types of offenders, especially within the category of youngsters who have committed sex offences. Aim,To test for relationships between psychiatric disorder and specific offence category among young male offenders. Method,Nationwide data were extracted from Dutch Forensic Psychiatric Services (FPD) files for five groups of offenders, as defined by their index offence: 308 violent sex offenders; 134 non-violent sex-offenders; 270 sex offenders against children; 3148 violent offenders and 1620 offenders charged with any crime other than interpersonal body contact crimes. They were compared on individual characteristics and psychiatric diagnoses according to DSM-IV criteria. Having a diagnosis of a paraphilia alone was exclusively associated with sex offending, therefore all such youths were excluded from further analyses. The OVERALS technique was used to explore possible relationships between offence, psychiatric diagnoses, sociodemographic and individual characteristics among the remaining young men for whom all pertinent data were available (n = 1894). Results,Sex offenders constituted a distinct group of juvenile delinquents. Developmental disorders were more common among non-violent sex offenders and child molesters. Violent offences were more typical of delinquents from immigrant backgrounds. Conclusion,Group differences in types of psychiatric diagnoses may reflect differences in aetiological factors for the various types of sexual and other delinquent behaviour, and this would be worthy of further study. Copyright © 2007 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    Excessive violence and psychotic symptomatology among homicide offenders with schizophrenia

    Taina Laajasalo
    Background,It is not currently known how psychotic symptoms are associated with the nature of violence among homicide offenders with schizophrenia, or, more specifically, whether different psychotic symptoms are differentially linked with excessive violence. Aim,To identify factors associated with the use of excessive violence among homicide offenders with schizophrenia. Methods,Forensic psychiatric examination statements and Criminal Index File data of 125 consecutive Finnish homicide offenders with a diagnosis of schizophrenia were analysed. Results,Nearly one-third of the cases in this sample involved extreme violence, including features such as sadism, mutilation, sexual components or multiple stabbings. Excessive violence was a feature of acts when the offender was not the sole perpetrator or when there was a previous homicidal history. Positive psychotic symptoms, including delusions, were not associated with the use of excessive violence. Conclusions,These results highlight the importance of variables other than clinical state when examining qualitative aspects of homicidal acts, such as the degree and nature of violence, by offenders with schizophrenia. Further study is needed with a more specific focus on the qualities of the violence among different subgroups of offenders, but inclusive of those with psychosis. Copyright © 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    Developmental aspects of violence and the institutional response

    Stephen BlumenthalArticle first published online: 14 MAR 200
    Introduction The developmental and attachment literature on violence is reviewed. Violence is conceptualized as an attempt to achieve justice. The cycle of violence is explored with reference to the early experience of perpetrators and their treatment by the criminal justice system after they have committed acts of violence. Aetiology The origins of violence are considered in the context of the experience of trauma in childhood and the consequent damage to ,internal working models' of relationships. The perpetration of violence in later life is viewed in the context of identifying with the aggressor, the obliteration of thought processes and the repetition of the earlier childhood trauma. The offence is considered as a symptom, a symbolic communication, by individuals who are unable to symbolize distress on a verbal level. The institutional response The ,violence begets violence' hypothesis is then extended to include the response of society and its institutions as part of the full circle of the repetition compulsion: the childhood victim who later becomes a perpetrator, then again becomes the victim of a cruel and persecuting system. Incarceration is viewed as a ,compromise formation' in that it fulfils the wish both for punishment and for care, albeit in a highly disguised form and allowing for a defensive state of mind to continue. The therapeutic relationship These issues are considered in the context of the therapeutic relationship and the enactment of early trauma in this setting which may provide insight into the psychological processes at work between the offender and society. Conclusions Understanding violence indicates that, whilst some individuals need to be physically checked, a response which focuses on retribution fails to address the problem of violence and colludes with the very pathology of those who engage in such action. Copyright © 2000 Whurr Publishers Ltd. [source]


    CRIMINOLOGY, Issue 2 2010
    Many offenses take place close to where the offender lives. Anecdotal evidence suggests that offenders also might commit crimes near their former homes. Building on crime pattern theory and combining information from police records and other sources, this study confirms that offenders who commit robberies, residential burglaries, thefts from vehicles, and assaults are more likely to target their current and former residential areas than similar areas they never lived in. In support of the argument that spatial awareness mediates the effects of past and current residence, it also is shown that areas of past and present residence are more likely to be targeted if the offender lived in the area for a long time instead of briefly and if the offender has moved away from the area only recently rather than a long time ago. The theoretical implications of these findings and their use for investigative purposes are discussed, and suggestions for future inquiry are made. [source]


    CRIMINOLOGY, Issue 4 2008
    The Supplemental Homicide Reports (SHR) are widely used in criminological research and inform a broad range of research topics and subsequent policy applications. A serious issue with the SHR is missing information about the offender and incident in many recorded homicides. Although it is convenient to discard cases with missing data before analysis, such discarding is not theoretically justified and can lead to incorrect substantive conclusions. Recently, several techniques for imputing missing SHR data have been proposed, but it is difficult to evaluate their effectiveness. This research presents a new approach to testing and evaluating SHR imputation techniques. Offender data that are missing in the SHR are often found in police records available for individual cities. We examine similarities and differences among cases with known offender characteristics in the SHR, cases with such information missing in the SHR but available in police records, and cases with such information missing in both sources. We then use these data sets to evaluate four different imputation techniques suggested in the literature (Fox, 2004; Messner, Deane, and Beaulieu, 2002; Pampel and Williams, 2000; Regoeczi and Riedel, 2003). We apply each imputation technique to the SHR, and for cases with information missing in the SHR but known in the police records, we see how well the imputed values correspond both with the individual known values and with the overall distributions in the police records. We discuss the outcome of our assessment of these strategies, and we outline important implications this assessment has for research using SHR data. [source]


    CRIMINOLOGY, Issue 4 2008
    Because research shows a close association between offending and victimization, recent work has argued that theories that account for crime should explain victimization as well. The current study uses a new approach to examine the extent of the overlap between offenders who commit violent crime and victims of violence to determine whether it is worthwhile to pursue separate theories to account for these phenomena. Specifically, we take the statistical approach that Osgood and Schreck (2007) developed for analyzing specialization in violent versus property offending and apply it to analyzing tendencies to gravitate toward violent offending versus victimization. In doing so, we treat the differentiation into victim and offender roles as an individual-level latent variable while controlling for confounding between the likelihood that individuals will take either role in violent acts and their overall numbers of encounters with violence (as either offender or victim). Our purpose is to examine 1) whether significant differentiation can be observed between the tendency to be an offender versus the tendency to be a victim, 2) whether any such differential tendency is stable over time, and 3) if it is possible to predict whether individuals will tend toward violent offending versus victimization. Using two waves of data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health to explore these objectives, we find significant and stable levels of differentiation between offenders and victims. Moreover, this differentiation is predictable with explanatory variables. [source]


    CRIMINOLOGY, Issue 3 2005
    We use the National Crime Victimization Survey to examine whether domestic violence is less likely to be repeated if it is reported to the police and if the offender is arrested. Our longitudinal analyses suggest that reporting has a fairly strong deterrent effect, whereas the effect of arrest is small and statistically insignificant. We find no support for the hypothesis that offenders retaliate when victims (rather than third parties) call the police or when victims sign complaints. We also find no evidence that the effects of reporting or arrest depend on the seriousness of the offense, a history of violence by the offender or sociodemographic characteristics. Our results suggest that the best policies for deterrence will be those that encourage victims and third parties to report violence by intimate partners to the police. [source]


    CRIMINOLOGY, Issue 2 2005
    Applying Dickey-Fuller time series techniques in tandem with intuitive plot-displays, we examine recent trends in girls' violence and the gender gap as reported in four major sources of longitudinal data on youth violence. These sources are arrest statistics of the Uniform Crime Reports, victimization data of the National Crime Victimization Survey (where the victim identifies sex of offender) and self-reported violent behavior of Monitoring the Future and National Youth Risk Behavior Survey. We find that the rise in girls' violence over the past one to two decades as counted in police arrest data from the Uniform Crime Reports is not borne out in unofficial longitudinal sources. Several net-widening policy shifts have apparently escalated girls' arrest-proneness: first, stretching definitions of violence to include more minor incidents that girls in relative terms are more likely to commit; second, increased policing of violence between intimates and in private settings (for example, home, school) where girls' violence is more widespread; and, third, less tolerant family and societal attitudes toward juvenile females. These developments reflect both a growing intolerance of violence in the law and among the citizenry and an expanded application of preventive punishment and risk management strategies that emphasize early identification and enhanced formal control of problem individuals or groups, particularly problem youth. [source]

    Characteristics of Household Addresses That Repeatedly Contact 911 to Report Intimate Partner Violence

    Debra Houry MD
    Abstract Objectives: To determine whether households that generate several 911 calls differ in important ways from those that make a single call and to determine whether households that generate repeat 911 calls for intimate partner violence (IPV) experience more severe violence than those that do not. Methods: All cases of police-documented IPV were reviewed and linked with their respective 911 calls. Each incident report was reviewed to determine the relationship between the offender and victim, demographic characteristics of the offender and victim, weapon and substance involvement, prior incidents of IPV, and violence severity. Results: Of the 1,505 IPV addresses identified during the 12-month study interval, 1,010 (67.1%) placed more than one phone call to report IPV. Sixty-nine percent of African American victims, 50.6% of white victims, and 36.8% of Hispanic victims were repeat callers (p < 0.001). There were no differences between addresses that generated repeat calls versus single calls with respect to offender alcohol or drug involvement, presence of children, victim age, or offender age. Sixty-seven percent of households with severe violence and 66.9% of households with minor violence generated repeat 911 calls (p = 0.98). Conclusions: Ethnic differences in 911 use for IPV exist between African Americans, whites, and Hispanics. However, unknown societal, economic, or cultural issues could have influenced this finding. Households that repeatedly contacted 911 during the study interval to report IPV were not more likely to experience severe violence than those that placed a single 911 call. [source]

    Positive health-care effects of an alcohol ignition interlock programme among driving while impaired (DWI) offenders

    ADDICTION, Issue 11 2007
    Bo Bjerre
    ABSTRACT Aims To compare the costs of hospital care and sick leave/disability pensions between two groups of driving while impaired (DWI) offenders: participants in an alcohol ignition interlock programme (AIIP) and controls with revoked licences, but with no comparable opportunity to participate in an AIIP. Setting As an alternative to licence revocation DWI offenders can participate in a voluntary 2-year AIIP permitting the offender to drive under strict regulations entailing regular medical check-ups. The participants are forced to alter their alcohol habits and those who cannot demonstrate sobriety are dismissed from the programme. Participants are liable for all costs themselves. Design Quasi-experimental, with a non-equivalent control group used for comparison; intent-to-treat design. Based on the number of occasions/days in hospital and on sick leave/disability pension, the health-care costs for public insurance have been calculated. Finding Average total health-care costs were 25% lower among AIIP participants (1156 individuals) than among controls (815 individuals) during the 2-year treatment period. This corresponds to over ,1000 (SEK9610) less annual costs per average participant. For those who complete the 2-year programme the cost reduction was more pronounced; 37% during the treatment and 20% during the post-treatment period. Conclusions The positive health-care effects were due apparently to reduced alcohol consumption. The social benefit of being allowed to drive while in the AIIP may also have contributed. The reduction in health-care costs was significant only during the 2-year treatment period, but among those who completed the entire AIIP sustained effects were also observed in the post-treatment period. The effects were comparable to those of regular alcoholism treatment programmes. [source]

    Moral Agency, Cognitive Distortion, and Narrative Strategy in the Rehabilitation of Sexual Offenders

    ETHOS, Issue 3 2010
    James B. Waldram
    I demonstrate that what forensic psychologists refer to as a "cognitive distortion" or "thinking error" is often embedded within a broader narrative, and that these narratives reveal the existence of identifiable strategies designed to communicate something salient, enduring, and moral about the offender. Through the examination of narratives offered by imprisoned sexual offenders, several such narrative strategies containing the seeds of moral agency are identified. It is suggested that CBT's current focus on cognitive distortions effectively eliminates this narrative context and thus serves to disguise and even eradicate the positive, moral notions of self that most offenders exhibit in some form or another. A rehabilitative approach that works with narrative, facilitating development of shared narratives among offenders and therapists, would allow for the emergence of a plan for morally agentive living, transcending what is currently possible within the hostile, challenging framework of CBT. [narrative theory; cognitive behavior therapy; moral agency; sexual offenders; prisons] [source]

    How acts of forgiveness restore a sense of justice: Addressing status/power and value concerns raised by transgressions

    Michael Wenzel
    Commonly it is understood that forgiveness means sacrificing justice. However, the present study shows that the act of forgiving can increase a sense of justice, which in turn facilitates benevolent sentiments towards the offender. University students (N,=,88) imagined themselves as victims and, after the offender either did or did not offer an apology, they either were or were not instructed to express their forgiveness to the offender (via an email). Results showed that, irrespective of apology, the expression of forgiveness led to a greater sense of justice in victims, mediated via feelings of status/power and the perception of a value consensus with the offender. The feeling of justice further mediated the effects of the forgiveness expression in terms of reducing hostile emotions, revenge motivation and retributive attitudes, as well as increasing the willingness to reconcile with the offender. Copyright © 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    Punishment as restoration of group and offender values following a transgression: value consensus through symbolic labelling and offender reform

    Tyler G. Okimoto
    Justice theory has suggested that transgressions pose a threat to the shared values that underlie broken rules or laws, suggesting that in order to address concerns over the values violated by an offence, perceived consensus regarding those values must be reaffirmed. However, little empirical research has been conducted examining how legal responses can address those value concerns. In the current research we argue that punishments, as a common response to injustice, can reaffirm perceived value consensus through two routes: (1) by symbolically labelling the offence as against group values, thus reinforcing values towards observers and (2) by attempting to reform the offender, thus reinforcing values towards the offender. Consistent with this argument, three empirical studies showed that the public and inclusive nature of punishment helps restore a perceived value consensus as such characteristics facilitate these two processes. Moreover, these characteristics had a positive effect on perceived punishment appropriateness particularly when value concerns were heightened. These findings implicate symbolic labelling and offender reform as two processes by which punishments can restore the perception of value consensus and suggest that these processes are integral to justice restoration through punishment when value consensus is a dominant concern. Copyright © 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    The Measuring Rod of Time: The Example of Swedish Day-fines

    abstract,Time is money', Benjamin Franklin's ,Poor Richard' tells us. But instead of converting time expenditures into monetary equivalents, it makes more sense in many cases to convert money into temporal equivalents. The difficulty in putting a monetary value on time in unpaid household labour, when adjusting the National Accounts, points to the problems of the first approach. The advantages of the latter approach are illustrated by the Swedish system of specifying criminal fines in terms of the number of days the offender would have to work to pay them off. [source]

    Making the Punishment Fit the Crime and the Criminal: Attributions of Dangerousness as a Mediator of Liability,

    Catherine A. Sanderson
    This research examines how individuals use information regarding characteristics of crimes (e. g., crime severity) and characteristics of the offender (e. g, prior criminal record) to form an impression of the criminal as dangerous to society, and to make liability judgments. Two studies presented college students and community members with crime scenarios and asked for ratings of crime severity, likelihood of recidivism, perceived dangerousness of the offender, and liability. Type of crime, severity. and likelihood of recidivism significantly predicted both liability and perceived dangerousness. Further more, in crimes against people only, the effects of severity and recidivism on liability were partially mediated by individuals' perceptions of the offender as criminally dangerous. The discussion examines the implications of these findings for attribution theory and sentencing in the criminal-justice system. [source]

    Criminal attitudes to violence: Development and preliminary validation of a scale for male prisoners

    Devon L.L. Polaschek
    Abstract Two studies report on the development and preliminary psychometric properties of a new scale measuring criminal attitudes to violence. In Study 1, the responses of a mixed sample of male prisoners were used to select 20 scale items from a larger pool. The final scale (the Criminal Attitudes to Violence Scale; CAVS) was designed so that it had a single-factor structure and was uncorrelated with a measure of social desirability bias. It demonstrated high internal reliability, and a strong relationship to a self-report measure of physical aggression. Significant differences were found in CAVS mean scores for various offence history comparisons, such as whether or not the offender was currently on sentence for a violent conviction. In the second study, most results from the first study were replicated with an independent sample of male prisoners. Further, compared to another scale measuring attitudes to aggression [the EXPAGG Instrumental subscale; Archer and Haigh, 1997b], the CAVS was a better predictor of general attitudes to crime. Mean CAVS scores were again significantly higher for current violent offenders than those on sentence for other types of offences. Lastly, the CAVS was moderately predictive of estimated risk of reconviction and re-imprisonment. Overall these results suggest that this scale measures the construct of attitudes to criminal violence, which partially overlaps two other constructs: attitudes to aggression and attitudes to crime. Aggr. Behav. 30:484,503, 2004. © 2004 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]

    Developing a Spatial-Temporal Method for the Geographic Investigation of Shoeprint Evidence

    Ge Lin Ph.D.
    Abstract:, This article examines the potential of a spatial-temporal method for analysis of forensic shoeprint data. The large volume of shoeprint evidence recovered at crime scenes results in varied success in matching a print to a known shoe type and subsequently linking sets of matched prints to suspected offenders. Unlike DNA and fingerprint data, a major challenge is to reduce the uncertainty in linking sets of matched shoeprints to a suspected serial offender. Shoeprint data for 2004 were imported from the Greater London Metropolitan Area Bigfoot database into a geographic information system, and a spatial-temporal algorithm developed for this project. The results show that by using distance and time constraints interactively, the number of candidate shoeprints that can implicate one or few suspects can be substantially reduced. It concludes that the use of space-time and other ancillary information within a geographic information system can be quite helpful for forensic investigation. [source]

    The Relationship Between the Detection of Acquisitive Crime by Forensic Science and Drug-Dependent Offenders

    John W. Bond D.Phil.
    Abstract:, Drug- and nondrug-related acquisitive crime offences such as burglary, theft, and motor vehicle theft, were compared to assess whether drug abusers were more likely to be apprehended via forensic science techniques. Data were all acquisitive offences committed over a 6-year period within a police force area in England. Drug-dependent offenders committed a wider range of offence types than nondependent offenders, and they were significantly more likely to be detected via their DNA or fingerprints (p < 0.01). A logistic regression (n > 14,000) revealed a number of predictors that influence the detection of the crime by forensic techniques. The results indicate that a number of these predictors are of statistical significance; the most significant of these being drug use by the offender with sex, ethnicity, and employment status also being relevant. Age of the offender and number of offences committed were found not to be significant. Of the four hypotheses considered to explain this, the most likely was thought to be the physical and mental impact of drug use on crime scene behavior. Consideration is given to the disciplines of forensic science and forensic psychology working closely together to distinguish factors that influence crime scene behavior. [source]

    Sexual Homicide: A Spatial Analysis of 25 Years of Deaths in Los Angeles

    Isaac T. Van Patten Ph.D.
    Abstract: Although it has been frequently studied over the last 100 years, empirical studies of sexual homicide are lacking. The majority of the existing studies have been descriptive in nature. In this study, we consider the spatial geometry of sexual homicide and the impact of time and distance on case solvability. An analysis of sexual homicides (n = 197) from 1980 to 2004 for Los Angeles County was conducted. Offender and victim journey to encounter site, journey to body disposal site, and journey-after-crime trips were examined. Descriptive and bivariate analyses were performed to examine victim, offender and case characteristics. Using logistic regression models both time factors and offense geometries were found to be significant predictors in case solvability. Simpler geometries are significantly more likely to be solved than cases with complex geometries and the longer a case remains unsolved the less likely it is that it will be closed. The results provide support for some of the findings from earlier descriptive studies and extend our understanding of the spatial geometry of sexual homicide. [source]

    Statistical modelling in the investigation of stranger rape

    Mirjam ter Beek
    Abstract A sample of stranger rape offences (n = 271) registered in the Dutch Violence Crime Linkage Analysis System database in the Netherlands between 1997 and 2007 was studied with the objective of developing statistical models, which give an indication of the probability of basic offender characteristics. Observable crime characteristics concerning the modus operandi, interaction between the offender and the victim, violence, precautionary measures, and sexual behaviours were selected in the dataset. Offender characteristics were selected based on their usefulness for the police organisation in narrowing the scope of a criminal investigation. Spatial behaviour, criminal history, and living situation of the offender were selected. From the predictive models, four out of five achieved a correct rate of over 70%, and all models predicted better than the best guess method. The proposed models for distance and prior convictions for violence seem particularly promising. Both these models show an improvement of correctly predicted offender characteristics of more than 20 percentile points compared with that which could have been estimated based on the average in the total sample. The predictive value of the models needs to be tested further with ,new offences', which were not used to construct the model. In general, the current study supports the finding that crime characteristics can be used to get an indication of the probability of certain offender characteristics. Nevertheless, for an understanding of the relationship between the crime characteristics and offender characteristics, a further development of a theoretical framework is urgently necessary. Copyright © 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    To link or not to link: a test of the case linkage principles using serial car theft data

    Matthew Tonkin
    Abstract The purpose of the present study is to test the case linkage principles of behavioural consistency and behavioural distinctiveness using serial vehicle theft data. Data from 386 solved vehicle thefts committed by 193 offenders were analysed using Jaccard's, regression and Receiver Operating Characteristic analyses to determine whether objectively observable aspects of crime scene behaviour could be used to distinguish crimes committed by the same offender from those committed by different offenders. The findings indicate that spatial behaviour, specifically the distance between theft locations and between dump locations, is a highly consistent and distinctive aspect of vehicle theft behaviour; thus, intercrime and interdump distance represent the most useful aspects of vehicle theft for the purpose of case linkage analysis. The findings have theoretical and practical implications for understanding of criminal behaviour and for the development of decision-support tools to assist police investigation and apprehension of serial vehicle theft offenders. Copyright © 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    Distance patterns and disposal sites in rural area homicides committed in Finland

    Helinä Häkkänen
    Abstract The present study examined offender characteristics, distance patterns, and the nature of disposal sites in rural area homicides. Pre-trial investigation files of cases where victims' bodies were found in rural areas in 1994,2005 (n,=,46) and forensic psychiatric examination reports of the offenders were content-analysed. Psychopathy Check List-Revised was used to assess psychopathy. Investigators of these homicides filled out a questionnaire on the offender's familiarity with the body disposal area, and MapInfo was used to measure offender/victim-residence-to-crime-to-body-disposal-site distances. Rural area homicides more frequently involved multiple offenders who were significantly younger than offenders in other homicides. Of the victims, 73% were found in woods and 27% in water. Offenders were familiar with disposal sites in over half of the cases. The victim's gender, close relationship with the offender, and the offender's violent crime history were associated with longer homicide-scene-to-body-disposal-site distances. The number of inhabitants and offender's violent crime history were related to longer offender-residence-to-body-disposal-site distances. Offender's age, intelligence, or psychopathology bore no significant association with the distance patterns. The results can be applied when searching missing persons in homicide investigations and in prioritising suspects in rural area homicides. Copyright © 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    From marine ecology to crime analysis: Improving the detection of serial sexual offences using a taxonomic similarity measure

    Jessica Woodhams
    Abstract Jaccard has been the choice similarity metric in ecology and forensic psychology for comparison of sites or offences, by species or behaviour. This paper applies a more powerful hierarchical measure,taxonomic similarity (,s), recently developed in marine ecology,to the task of behaviourally linking serial crime. Forensic case linkage attempts to identify behaviourally similar offences committed by the same unknown perpetrator (called linked offences). ,s considers progressively higher-level taxa, such that two sites show some similarity even without shared species. We apply this index by analysing 55 specific offence behaviours classified hierarchically. The behaviours are taken from 16 sexual offences by seven juveniles where each offender committed two or more offences. We demonstrate that both Jaccard and ,s show linked offences to be significantly more similar than unlinked offences. With up to 20% of the specific behaviours removed in simulations, ,s is equally or more effective at distinguishing linked offences than where Jaccard uses a full data set. Moreover, ,s retains significant difference between linked and unlinked pairs, with up to 50% of the specific behaviours removed. As police decision-making often depends upon incomplete data, ,s has clear advantages and its application may extend to other crime types. Copyright © 2007 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]