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Criminal Profiling : The Criminal Investigative Approach, And The Scientific Statistical Approach Essay

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Informal criminal profiling has a long history. It was used as early as the 1880s, when two physicians, George Phillips and Thomas Bond, used crime scene clues to make predictions about British serial murderer Jack the Ripper 's personality.

For years, law enforcement investigators, academics, mental health experts, and the media have studied serial murder, from Jack the Ripper in the late 1800s to the sniper killings in 2002, and from the “Zodiac Killer” in California to the “BTK Killer” in Kansas. These diverse groups have long attempted to understand the complex issues related to serial murder investigations via offender profiling. Until the Serial Murder Symposium, however, there had been few attempts to reach a consensus on some of the issues surrounding the inability to conclusively deduct a precise profile of an individual that may or may not commit such crimes. This paper will discuss the relevant successfulness of offender profiling.
There are three leading approaches in offender profiling: the criminal investigative approach, the clinical practitioner approach, and the scientific statistical approach. The criminal investigative approach is what is used law enforcement and more specifically by the Behavioural Analysis Unit (BAU) within the FBI. What the BAU does is defined as "assists law enforcement agencies by their review and assessment of a criminal act, by interpreting the offender 's behaviour during the crime and the interactions between the
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