Criminal profiling is an investigative analysis of the qualities of the person responsible for committing a crime or a series of crimes. It requires the utilization of the logical strategy, an applied understanding of the science of logic, and the capacity to know when somebody is wrong. It additionally requires some comprehension of bias.

Criminal profiling alone won’t be able to dispense the pending cases of crimes; however, its contributions increase the success rate. According to the FBI, it was ascertained that there is only a 17% success rate from the criminal profiling. As a solitary mechanism, it has a character- personality.

But with the help of criminal profiling, it can enable the law to dispense justice to the righteous. Not just for serial killers, but also for other sexual offenses, homicides, and offenses related to property, help from psychology unveils the underlying motive of the offender which makes it convenient for the law-enforcing authorities to serve justice.

The profilers do an intensive study using the core characteristics, namely, physical characteristics, cognitive process, offensive behavior, social history, and habits. It helps them find out the age, sex, gender, familiarity with the crime scene, familiarity with the victim, primary motives of the crime, and mental illness of the offender. Also, social history and economic background reveal a lot of traits about the offender which can be useful in identifying him.

The reformative theories of punishment can be brought into light when deciding cases using criminal profiling. Depending upon the personality, ability to cope with the society, and intrinsic need to reform, the punishment should be decided. There should be individualization of punishment. It means that judges should construct positive criminology to determine in each particular case, the causes that led the person to commit the crime and prescribe a penal treatment that would contribute to the actual growth of the guilty.


  • The procedures of criminal profiling are as follows:

  • Evaluation of the criminal offense

  • In-depth evaluation of specifics of the crime scenes

  • Comprehensive analysis of the victim

  • Studying preliminary police reports

  • Assessment of the medical examiner’s autopsy protocol

  • Advancement of profile with basic guilty party attributes

  • Investigative suggestions predicated on the construction of the profile

Application of investigative profiling:

Hostage negotiation is one of the popular areas where profiling is done. Profilers are supposed to assess the subject in terms of his probable course of action and his reactions to various stimuli from the conversation between the hostage and police officers or between the hostage and the forensic psychologists.

These techniques are also used in identifying anonymous letter writers and persons behind the origin of those letters. Using psycholinguistic techniques, the profilers compose a threat dictionary, whereby every word is attached to a specific category of meanings. Rapists and other sexual offenders also lend the profilers in creating profiles of the same. By understanding the sexual, physical, and mental behavior, the profilers can determine what kind of rapist he is and form a picture of the offender. In some cases, the underlying motive behind the serial killing is also uncovered in due process.

Criminal profiling is an unpredictable and muddled action. The mental profile of any human being engaged with wrongdoing will mix both positive characteristics, also those which will portray the event of a specific social gathering - hoodlums. The psychical characteristics of any human can't lethally choose the standoffish function of the guilty party. There are anyway a few psychical quirks like social variables, which will decide the mental profile and social direction. When we talk about the guilty party's personality, these are to be dissected.

Criminal profiling offers data to all law operators which are directing the criminal examination. In the criminal examination, a basic profile can't be equivalent to the specific recognizable proof of the wrongdoer. Notwithstanding, criminal profiling can dispose of a significant piece of variations, confining enough the suspect's circle. More information offers the criminal profile what's more, and builds proficiency in the examination.


Ruprekha Jena
3rd Year Law Student from KIIT School of Law, Bhubaneswar

Leave a Comment

Previous Comments

Related Blogs