Vettor, Shannon Lynn (2012)
Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.
This thesis investigates the underlying assumptions of Offender Profiling and the ability to infer offender characteristics from crime scene characteristics of sexual offences, taking into consideration the potential mediating effects of the contextual factors surrounding the offence, the offender’s implicit theories, and their motivations to sexually offend. The data examined, collected during the evaluation of the Sex Offender Treatment Programme, consisted of men who committed either a rape or sexual murder against adult women. The Offender Profiling literature is reviewed and critiqued in Chapter 1, identifying future areas to examine in Chapter 2. Chapter 4 compares the characteristics of rapists and sexual murderers and the pathway to offending of sexual aggressors of adult women. Chapter 5 looked at the effects of various contextual variables on the relationship between offender characteristics and offence characteristics. Chapter 6 investigates the inclusion of perceptual aspects in the form of the offender’s implicit theories and the effect these have on the A to C equation. Chapter 7 examines the effect of the offender’s motivations to offend, and how these would affect the ability to infer offender characteristics from crime scene variables. The results of the thesis are discussed in terms of both pragmatic and theoretical support of Offender Profiling.
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