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Mar. 16th, 2006 @ 10:56 am Victimology
Current Mood: awake
Current Music: Chan Chan - Buena Vista Social Club
Let's get this show on the road then....

I was talking to a friend of mine, who's a clinical psychologist, about how we are preoccupied with the profile of the criminal ,
and very often forget the profile of the victim. Which is strange actually, since the victim, living or not, is a very valuable source of information,
especially in profiling.

Such victimology can learn us many things, I'll try to illustrate with a simple, fictious example:

victim X is a young university student, murdered on a Thursday afternoon, at her dorm.
Her profile learns us that she isn't trusting from nature, even inclines to a slight paranoia,
due to her unease with being the first year 'in the big city'. Her roster learns us that she
indeed has no classes on Thursday afternoon and fellow dorm students confirm she often
spends her Thurrsday afternoons at her room, studying, since she has a class on Fridays she
not really good at and could do with the extra preparation.

The timing of the killer is interesting when we look at this victim profile.
Chances are indeed he knew of her habits and not having classes on Thursday afternoons,
implying he had either access to school rosters or has done a careful observation and stakeout
of his victim. The chances she was randomly chosen are slim.
There were no sign of forced entry or a struggle in the hallway, meaning that the rather distrusting
girl by nature has let the killer in wantingly. Possibly she knew the killer or he portrayed someone who she
was comfortable letting in (a policeman, cable guy, ...)

Crossreferencing a victim's profile and what it learns us with forensic evidence, witness' statements, ...
might help the criminalist to narrow down the possible profiles of the killer.

Thoughts on victimology ?
Do share them !
About this Entry
lost at sea
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Date:April 2nd, 2006 08:43 am (UTC)
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Sorry I'm so late. I was away for a few weeks.

I had attended seminars on profiling for grad school in forensic science. One was taught by a retired profiler, Robert Ressler and another by Kenneth Lanning. From what they discussed, it would seem that victimology would be most useful with a preferential offender, who selects the victim based on often specific characteristics that the offender is seeking - such as age range, race, hair color, etc.

With an opportunistic offender, it might be a bit less so. Victim behavior might be very useful however as the victim's vulnerabilities would be of great interest as to how the opportunity for attack presented itself.
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Date:April 3rd, 2006 09:47 am (UTC)
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Very true of course.

Victimology is just one tool present to solve the puzzle, yet puzzles are rarely solved with just a single tool. It completes the viewpoint of how one looks to a crime though: from the viewpoint of the criminal, from the viewpoint of the knowledgeable observer and from the viewpoint of the victim.
Date:April 7th, 2006 06:05 am (UTC)

Just found your site

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Ill keep monitoring, its too late in the evening for thoughtful reflection but... as Ahnode said...

"Ill be back"
Date:July 8th, 2006 11:02 am (UTC)
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Great thing about victimology is that it allows us another viewpoint and more clues on the perpetrator, and also can help towards determining motive on the death of a seemingly "innocent victim". Not that anyone deserves to be murdered.
Date:August 26th, 2006 07:26 pm (UTC)

question ?

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how would one investigate murders and crime done via astral travel, projection, the metaphysical, and aztec-shape-shifting / morphing and satanic ritual abuse?