What is a Criminal Profiler?

Criminal ProfilerTo be a criminal profiler, one must be able to read into people and circumstances. These psychological sleuths did not come into the crime investigation world until New York City investigators grew frustrated about a 16 year open investigation in 1956. James Brussel was a psychiatrist who was able to successfully tell investigators that the bomber in question was unmarried, resided in Connecticut, had mental health issues, in his 50s, self-educated, foreign and who triggered the start of his 16 year bombing spree. Thanks to Dr. Brussel, a whole new accurate method of catching criminals was put into play.

What It Takes To Be a Criminal Profiler

Criminal profilers are taught specific techniques to use, but most of them also had the ability to read into things before pursuing this specific line of work. While most people can be taught some of the basics, common sense and intuitiveness are major factors which determine whether the profiler is average or great. Even from a young age, the great profilers are likely to have been interested in people. They would ask questions and observe their surroundings and the actions of their peers and family members. A profiler will have been educated; even if that means that he educated himself. In this specific job, one must be confident in his abilities, but he must also be able to change his beliefs based on the evidence that has been left behind. The real question to be asked is how offender profiling really works.

How Criminal Profiling Works

According to the American Psychological Association, offender profiling works by being able to use evidence, dates, times and any other facts to help determine the motive, trigger and person committing the crime. Over the last 50 years, profiler training has been added to most law enforcement training, but the FBI has implanted its own department dedicated to profile criminals. The people in charge of profiling typically analyze data and information from crime scenes. Criminal signatures can say a lot about the criminal, and they help the profilers determine things as broad as age range or as specific as the actual person’s name. When a profile is given, it is not always completely accurate, but as time progresses and more crimes are committed the profiler is able to input more data. The more data that the profiler has, the more accurate the profile actually is. There have been cases in which where the profilers were incorrect, but more often than not the profiles are a match and aids in the capture and arrest of the suspect.

Related Resource: Criminal Researcher

Criminal profiling may be a fairly new technique in the investigative industry, but it is one of the most accurate ways in determining information about suspects. Over the last 50 years, multiple arrests have been made solely because a profiler was able to accurately depict the suspect. While DNA, fingerprinting and other technical processes are still used, psychological investigations are being accepted by more industries every day.