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Criminal Profiling Essay Sample

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Introduction of TOPIC

It has been said before and you hear it everywhere. Information is power (The Pennsylvania State University, 2008). The notion of information plays a fundamental role in the development of the society. Information is data that has been processed in such a way as to be meaningful to the person who receives it. This approach to information, like most human-centered approaches to information, leads one to emphasize the meaning and use of message, “what the message is about?” and “what is known already?” over the information carrying messenger and the message itself (Bob Losee, n.d.). Kuhlthau (2005) depicts the information-search process as a sequential set of intellectual stages: becoming aware of the lack of knowledge or understanding identifying a problem area or topic,exploring the problem, defining the problem ,collecting relevant information (collection), and explaining what the person learned (presentation).

This model does not address the effort required to transition through the various information-seeking stages. (Ellis, n.d) characterizes six different types of information activities: starting, chaining, browsing, differentiating, monitoring and extracting. He emphasizes the information-seeking activities, rather than the nature of the problems or criteria used for determining when to stop the information search process. Dervin (2003) uses the term “outcome” to denote the information-seeking objective. Accomplishing that objective implies the conclusion of the information-seeking episode. Since it emphasizes the importance of the situation in seeking information and recognizes the episodic nature of information seeking, it does not explicitly address the factors associated with stopping behavior, although sense-making recognizes that given the incomplete nature of reality, the information-seeking process is only ever partially fulfilled.

(http://www.oclc.org/content/dam/research/publications/newsletters/prabha-satisficing.pdf?urlm=163009 )

Duff and Johnson (2003) note that time and money are important constraints on how much information can gather, which illustrates how Stroh et al. (2003) define “acceptable”. Lack of sufficient time and money clearly leads the researcher in the study to settle or satisfy when they believe they have enough information to meet their objective.

Having an accurate information will produce records. International Standards Organization (ISO)15489-1 defines a record as “information created, received, and maintained as evidence and information by an organization or person, in pursuance of legal obligations or in the transaction of business”. Regardless of the definition variations and interpretations, the underlying hallmarks of a record are the same. A record requires authenticity, reliability, integrity, and usability. Authenticity provides the record is a “true” item – an accurate representation of a transaction or activity, as purported by its creator at the time of creation. Reliability in terms that the record can be relied upon to be a trusted source of the information it contains. Another is integrity in which the record has not been and cannot be altered. It is complete in form and data. Usability which the record can be repeatedly retrieved throughout its lifecycle and used as an authoritative source of the information contained with in it. If an item fails any of these criteria, it is not a record. http://www.armedia.com/wp/RecordsDefinition.pdfAssociation of Records Managers & Administrators (ARMA) stated that records are the evidence of what the organization does.http://baoman.

files.wordpress.com/2011/09/1-definition-of-records.pdf Evidence

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is a testimony ,presentation of documents and records in such items relating to the existence or non-existence of alleged or disputed facts. It is used to support a criminal case. Definitions of what constitutes “evidence” have been debated, but most agree that evidence is extremely important for researchers, practitioners, and policy makers charged with the task of making decisions around the funding and implementation of violence prevention strategies. (Puddy, R. W. & Wilkins, N. (2011) Puddy, R. W. & Wilkins, N. (2011). Understanding Evidence Part 1: Best Available Research Evidence. A Guide to the Continuum of Evidence of Effectivenes s. Atlanta, GA: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

As time goes by, wherein more and more evidence materials are added to the stack and piled up, exploring the cabinet looking for the right record means traveling through spatial and temporal area, with a chance of finding information within a great bulk of records as one walks from one shelf to another. With the use of digital repositories, searching of criminal records will be easier.

A digital repository is where digital content, assets, are stored and can be searched and retrieved for later use. A repository supports mechanisms to import, export, identify, store and retrieve digital assets (“Digital Repositories: Helping Universities and Colleges”). In addition from the article, repositories are important for universities and colleges in helping to manage and capture intellectual assets as a part of their information strategy. A digital repository can hold a wide range of materials for a variety of purposes and users.

The demand for user access to computerized records has been growing for more than a decade. Nowadays, it is already possible for vast quantities of digital information to be collected, stored, processed and transferred easily even to handheld devices. (Vibar,2008; Castro & Atkinson, 2009).

With a computerized record system, the recordkeeper can use software to store information, summarize data,generate and print reports and sort transactions into categories and sub-categories.Storage of data is a very valuable component to a computerizedsystem. The data entry process may take you as long as in a handwritten system.

Most of the people nowadays are engaging in high technology and as an example of this is the computerized profiling system. In theory, criminal profiling is an investigative tool that investigators use to “determine characteristics of the perpetrators personality and to narrow down suspects (Burgess, “Forensic”).

Criminal profiling is a technique that “entails coming up with basic characteristics of the unsub,” properly known as the unknown subject, “and the victims (referred to as the victimology), using evidence…and matching that information to historic precedents and psychological analyses as a means to solve the case” (Huggo; Burgess, Personal interview). The utilization of behavioral science, as it is formerly called, “is all about better understanding criminals—who they are, how they think, why they do and what they do—as a means to help solve crimes and prevent attacks” (“Behavioral”). Investigative profiling also has been described as “a strategy enabling law enforcement to narrow the field of options and generate educated guesses about the perpetrator” (Douglas et al., “Chapter 6” 97).

Others describe an investigative profile as “a collection of leads an informed attempt to provide detailed information about a certain type of criminal and a biological sketch of behavioral patterns, trends, and tendencies” (Rossi qtd. in Douglas et al., “Chapter 6” 97; Geberth qtd. in Douglas et al., “Chapter 6” 97; )Vorpagel qtd. in Douglas et al., “Chapter 6” 97). In crimes in which neither the offender nor the victim is present, profiling becomes necessary, investigators rely on the only source of information that typically is available in the crime scene which reflects the murderer’s behavior and personality in much the same way as furnishings reveal a home owner’s character”(Douglas et al., “Chapter 6” 97-8; Geberth qtd. in Douglas et al., “Chapter 6” 97).

Thus, criminal profiling appropriately can be conceived as a crime-solving technique. However, it is more than just a textbook framework; members of the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) actively use criminal profiling techniques to apprehend dangerous criminals.

Mangaldan Police Station currently does not have profiling system. All of their criminal profiles are record manually. The police station receives many crime cases and as the cases increase more records are piled up. Making the records hard to locate. In addition storage of this records are going populated.

As of today we are now living with different technologies and attached to them. Making use of computerized and automated systems will make our lives better and will make us ease in locating or searching records.

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