L6 - Crime Linkage Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in L6 - Crime Linkage Deck (23):

What is crime linkage?

The identification of crimes believed to be committed by the same offender as a result of behavioural simialrites between them, in order to connect them to form a series.


What is crime linkage also called?

Comparative case analysis (UK Police)
Linkage analysis
Behavioural analysis
Behavioural Linking
Case Linkage (UK)


What are the reasons for linking crimes?

- to target prolific offenders
can be conducted with any type of crimes
- efficient deployment of police resources
- accumulation of physical evidence across crime scenes.
- each individual victim gains credibility if all targeted by the same offender(s) in rape cases.
- can be used as expert evidence in court.


50% of crime is committed by?

10% of offenders


What is ViCLAS?

Violent Crime Linkage Analysis System


What is linkage blindness?

The large distance travelled by offenders which avoids attention from multiple police forces/boundaries


What are the two fundamental assumptions needed to be correct for crime linkage to work, and who presented them?

Canter (1995):

- Offender consistency --> in the way they commit offences
- Offender distinctiveness --> crimes have to be committed in specific enough ways to be differentiated.


What are the potential drawbacks/implications of incorrect crime linkage?

- wasting police time
- fear in the community (serial offenders)
- true offender still at large
- miscarriages of justice


What is the Daubert criteria (often used in US)?

Practice-generated evidence put forward to courts has to:

1. Have a testable hypothesis behind it
2. Have been tested
2. Practice itself has to be subject to peer review and scientific publication.
4. It should have a known error rate (linked to how often assumptions are true) and operational standards
5. Widespread acceptance within scientific community.


What does C.A.P.S stand for?

Cognitive Affective Personality System


What is C.A.P.S and who was it developed by?

Mischel and Shoda (1995) presented it as a model of behaviour.
Says that, when an individual encounters a situation, elements of the situation will trigger thoughts, memories, emotions, goals and strategies, which then leads and influences that individual's behaviour.

The behaviour can also influence the situation, and the model is therefore circular.


When is your C.A.P.S system changing most?

Juvenile ages - when you are young.


Burglars are most consistent in which behaviours?

Geographical and temporal behaviour/offending.


Commercial robbers are most consistent in which behaviours, according to which study?

Woodhams and Toye, (2007)

Control/threat of victims, in terms of weapons used and ways of communication with them.
Forensic awareness - escape behaviours


Can crimes be linked across different crime types? If so, why?

Yes. Criminals are versatile and often commit several different types of offences. If criminals are consistent and distinctive enough, then crimes across type can also be linked.


What is essential for linkage across crime types?

Same/similar behaviours across the different types of crimes.


From the current research, which behaviours are thought to be consistent across crime types - and for which crimes?

Consistency in spatial and temporal behaviour.

Consistencies and distinctiveness in offending found between commercial burglaries and commercial robberies.

Tonkin et al., (2011); Tonkin and Woodhams (2017)


For what reasons does offending behaviour vary?

- the situation/scene of the crime may mediate the behaviour of offenders. E.g. burglars can't steal what is not in the house.
- disturbance during the crime by a 3rd party.
- age of offender (more variation in younger offenders)
- might not be about behaviour, may be inconsistencies in coding of it.
- individual differences in tolerance for frustration, attribution biases, discriminative faculty (noticing subtle changes in a situation)


What reasons did Davies (1992) suggest for why behaviours change/vary?

- effect of learning experiences/increases in maturity with age, throughout a series of crimes.
- variation in victim resistance
- variation in environment/third party disturbances
- media attention/coverage
- experience of conviction/arrest.


Why might behaviour in sexual offences vary over time, according to Gee and Belofastov (2007)?

- sexual fantasies can evolve over time and become more complicated, even if the core elements remain.


According to the academic research, which behaviours are said to be consistent among burglars?

- Weapon type used
- Distance between crimes
- Number of offenders
- Language used
- Type of violence used
- Manner displayed
- Whether the victim was restrained

(common theme of control over the victim)


According to the academic research, which behaviours are said to be consistent among car thieves?

- Where the car was found by the police
- Type of car theft (break into house to acquire keys, or just break into car)
- Time between crimes
- Distance between crimes
- Whether the car has an immobiliser
- Known/unknown offender


What are two critiques of crime linkage literature?

- use of solved crimes (criminals caught in these cases may be sig. more consistent and distinctive than those that don't get caught/convicted.) This reduces the validity of assumptions made.

- crime linkage must be tested in an environment as close as possible to conditions in which it is expected to work/be effective in

- testing crime linkage using crime pairs (but this takes crimes from two different series)

- lack of research comparing the different methodological approaches

- generalisability (small research base, small sample sizes