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Offender Profiling in Cases of Swedish Stranger Rapes
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
2013 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Swedish national statistics suggest that the number of reported stranger rapes is steadily increasing. Stranger rape is one of the most difficult types of crime for the police to investigate because there is no natural tie between the victim and offender. As a result, there is a need for more knowledge about how crime scene features could be used to make inferences of likely offender characteristics that could help investigators narrow down the pool of suspects. The aim in Study I was to examine how offender behaviors interact with contextual features, victim behaviors, and the assault outcome. Results suggest that the stranger rapes could be distinguished by five different dynamic rape pattern themes, which mainly differed on two dimensions: level of violence to control the victim, and level of impulsivity/premeditation characterizing the rapes. The results also highlight the importance of including contextual features when studying offender behaviors. The aim in Study II was to examine how single-victim rapists and serial rapists can be differentiated by the actions at their first stranger rape. Results suggest that three behaviors in conjunction: kissed victim, controlled victim, and offender drank alcohol before the offense, could be used to predict whether the offender was a single-victim rapist or serial rapist with a classification accuracy of 80.4 %. The aim in Study III was to examine how stranger rapists could be differentiated from a normative sample on background characteristics, and if stranger rapists’ pre-assault and initial-attack behaviors could be used to predict likely offender characteristics. Results showed that the strongest predictions could be made for previous criminal convictions, offender age, and the distance traveled by the offender to offend. Overall, the present thesis has found some scientific support for the use of crime scene behaviors to make inferences of likely offender characteristics that could be useful for profiling purposes.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Psychology, Stockholm University , 2013. , 51 p.
Keyword [en]
Offender profiling, criminal profiling, stranger rape, serial rapists, prediction, rape themes, crime scene behavior, offender characteristics, situational features
National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-89582ISBN: 978-91-7447-712-2 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-89582DiVA: diva2:618687
Public defence
2013-05-30, David Magnussonsalen (U31), Frescati Hagväg 8, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

At the time of the doctoral defense, the following papers were unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 1: Submitted. Paper 3: Submitted.

Available from: 2013-05-07 Created: 2013-04-29 Last updated: 2013-04-30Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Dynamic Patterns of Stranger Rape: Relating Offender Behavior to the Context, Victim Resistance, and Assault Outcome
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Dynamic Patterns of Stranger Rape: Relating Offender Behavior to the Context, Victim Resistance, and Assault Outcome
(English)Article in journal (Refereed) Submitted
National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-89575 (URN)
Available from: 2013-04-29 Created: 2013-04-29 Last updated: 2013-04-30Bibliographically approved
2. From Crime Scene Actions in Stranger Rape to Prediction of Rapist Type: Single-Victim or Serial Rapist?
Open this publication in new window or tab >>From Crime Scene Actions in Stranger Rape to Prediction of Rapist Type: Single-Victim or Serial Rapist?
2012 (English)In: Behavioral sciences & the law (Print), ISSN 0735-3936, E-ISSN 1099-0798, Vol. 30, no 6, 764-781 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The differences in crime scene actions in cases of stranger rape committed by convicted offenders were examined between 31 single-victim rapists and 35 serial rapists. Data were collected from police files, court verdicts, psychiatric evaluations, and criminal records. Findings indicate that the serial rapists were more criminally sophisticated than the single-victim rapists, during their first and second rapes. The single-victim rapists were significantly more likely to engage in the interpersonal involvement behavior of kissing the victim, and to engage in pre-assault alcohol use, than the serial rapists. There was, however, no significant difference in physically violent or sexual behaviors. To investigate the possibility of predicting rapist type, logistic regression analyses were performed. Results indicate that three behaviors in conjunction, kissed victim, controlled victim, and offender drank alcohol before the offense, predicted whether an unknown offender is a single-victim or serial rapist with a classification accuracy of 80.4%. The findings have implications for the classification of stranger rapists in offender profiling.

Keyword
stranger rape, crime scene actions, offender profiling
National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-83856 (URN)10.1002/bsl.2026 (DOI)000312033600006 ()
Available from: 2012-12-14 Created: 2012-12-14 Last updated: 2017-12-06Bibliographically approved
3. Using Stranger Rapists' Pre-Assault and Initial-Attack Behaviors to Predict Likely Offender Characteristics
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Using Stranger Rapists' Pre-Assault and Initial-Attack Behaviors to Predict Likely Offender Characteristics
(English)Article in journal (Refereed) Submitted
National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-89581 (URN)
Available from: 2013-04-29 Created: 2013-04-29 Last updated: 2013-04-30Bibliographically approved

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