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Offender profiling is a set of techniques used by law enforcement agencies

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Introduction

Psychology Offender profiling is a set of techniques used by law enforcement agencies to try to identify perpetrators of serious crime. Profiling techniques have been used increasingly by police forces in many parts of the world, while fictional representations in films and television series like Silence of the Lambs and Cracker have generated a huge fascination with the topic. A) In 1994, as a result of the work by David Canter, the potential of offender profiling was discovered. His involvement in the John Duffy case proved vital in convicting the railway rapist who was originally in a list of about 2000 suspects for two murders and five rapes. ...read more.

Middle

Canter also suggested that the offender would be living in the Kilburn area of London where the most of the crimes were committed, in places the attacker was familiar with. 12 of Canter's assumptions were spot-on, Surveillance was carried out and Duffy's activities convinced detectives that he was their man. He was later arrested. Following a series of interviews with Duffy and further forensic investigation, his childhood friend David Mulcahy was also arrested. He was found guilty and sentenced to 3 life sentences for murder and also received 24-year jail terms on each of the 7 rapes and 18 years each for 5 conspiracies to rape. ...read more.

Conclusion

Canter failed to discover that Duffy was not alone in his crimes and he had a partner only discovered 13 years later when Duffy confessed to a prison psychologist that his childhood friend, David Mulcahy, had been involved in the rapes and murders. However, Duffy was originally part of a list of 2000 suspects which Canter's profile managed to narrow down to a small number of main suspects. Also, thanks to the profile they knew a lot about the offender and about his hobbies and interests making it whole lot easier to interview suspects, this was also said to be the deciding point in their conviction that John Duffy was their man. ...read more.

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