In the criminal justice system, there is a growing demand for experts in the field of human behavior who can assist law enforcement with solving unusual homicide cases. Law enforcement agencies often seek help from psychologists, criminologists, psychiatrists, and other professionals that specialize in human behavior when trying to catch a suspect. The criminal profiler is analyzed as a person capable of giving the police insights about a probable killer, which will hopefully help solve the case. .
A criminal profile is best defined as a submitted report utilizing information and approaches from various social and behavioral sciences, and focusing on a specific type of violent crime (Holmes, 82). Normally, the profile provides a list of information intended to help law enforcement agencies in their investigation of a crime. The main focus of the criminal profile is on the social and behavioral characteristics of the killer. Some authorities perceive criminal profiling as a combination of brainstorming, intuition and educated guesses, however, the criminal profiling process is far more complex than that. Accurate profiling requires a careful compilation of theories and premises from psychology, sociology, psychiatry and criminology. Each of these subfields makes a different contribution to the criminal profile. .
The criminal profiler is essentially attempting to provide police with a report regarding the type of person that would commit the crime at hand. The criminal profile develops a description of an unknown individual by citing certain behavioral patterns and personality traits based on the evidence of the crime scene. The overall objective here, is to put certain types of offenders into categories and apply the information toward a solution of specific crimes. .
There are two main approaches to criminal profiling, the first being deductive criminal profiling. This approach focuses on the behavioral evidence analysis of a specific criminal, crime scene, and victim exclusively from forensic evidence relating to the crime scene and victim of that offender alone ("Deductive Criminal Profiling").