The scenario of a criminal event is central to the investigative process as well as the prosecution. The crime scenario is a chronological description of how and in what manner the crime is likely to have been committed. It is based upon reconstruction of the crime and interpretation of evidence. For offender profiling reconstruction is an essential prerequisite for making inferences about how the execution of the crime reflects characteristics of the offender. In the process of prosecution evidence must be presented in a crime scenario that is both credible and part of a reconstruction. Understanding how a crime scenario is created and in what way this influences investigation and prosecution is thus of importance. An experimental study was conducted on how the crime scenario might reflect motive and modus operandi and to relate crime characteristics with both elements. This paper will present the framework and results of the study.
2 Jul 2008
18th Conference of the European Association of Psychology and Law