Investigative Psychology Essay

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Analysis of the crime scene

After Jeffrey Dahmer was sentenced, he was taken to the Correctional Institution of Columbia, located in Portage; a town in Wisconsin. During his first incarceration year, Dahmer was confined separately in order to keep him physically safe in case he interacted with other prisoners. With his consent, when the first solitary confinement year was over, Dahmer was taken to a unit that was less secure. Here, he was made to work for two hours each day; he used to clean the ablution block.

Apparently, Dahmer adapted well to life in prison, although he had at first been separated from the other inmates. He ultimately managed to convince the authorities to let him interact more with his fellow prisoners. Dahmer learnt religion from photos and books he received from his father. The Correctional Institution of Columbia even allowed him to go through baptism; it was done by a pastor from that area.

In 1994, November 28, with regard to his participation in routine work details, he was allocated to work together with two of his fellow convicted murderers, Christopher Scaver and Jesse Anderson. When the three were left to work, Scaver attacked Dahmer and Jesse. By the time the guards came back, he had ruthlessly beaten them using a piece of metal from the weight room of the prison. After around one hour, it was declared that Dahmer had died. Anderson also passed on after a few days.

Scaver used a 5lb piece of metal to attack Dahmer while in the gym. He hit Dahmer around his head, which led to his head crushing. Dahmer was found lying on the gym bathroom floor. He had suffered severe facial and head wounds. The injuries on his face and head had been caused by severe hitting using a piece of metal that was 51cm (20 inches) long. In addition, it was reported that Dahmer's head had been banged on the wall during the attack. Scaver, Dahmer's murderer, said that other prisoners also disliked Dahmer. He always had one guard escorting him to prevent him from being attacked by the inmates. The prison employees must have left Dahmer with Scaver on purpose for him to be killed, since they were aware that Scaver hated him ( Editors, 2016).

Psychological profile

Dahmer's traits qualified him as a mixed type of serial killer. He was intelligent, he organized his crimes, he was sexually and socially inept, he used to live alone and he attacked strangers. Paraphilia-A problem whose symptoms include strange sexual desires, usually involving dangerous or extreme activities.

Cannibalism- Paraphilic cannibalism is the sexual pleasure that the paraphile gets from the intake of human flesh. Colleagues claimed that Dahmer's lunch used to be meat which had "my special gravy'."He would never allow them to taste it. In Dahmer's freezer, there was chopped human meat, which he shaped in form of patties. He claimed that eating human beings was meant for them to stay with him all his life. This was the same reason why he kept their skulls as well as masturbate before them.

Necrophilia- this is a sexual desire for dead body parts or dead people. The desire for corpses developed when Dahmer was an adolescent. This was also when he began a new lifetime obsession. He started compulsive masturbation. At times, this took place at the same time as dissections of carcusses. He was sexually aroused by the heat that came from the body he dissected. Dahmer nonetheless, was not sexually sadistic; he did not find pleasure in seeing others in pain or terrified.

Pedophilia- sexual desires towards children. On several occasions, Dahmer was apprehended for molesting children or expressing his desire to them. All the adults he assaulted were boyish and young. It is not clear if Dahmer had been molested by his teenage neighbor while he was a child. This is because it is a common story for many pedophiles.
Substance addiction- For a long time, Dahmer had been an instrumental alcohol user. He was despicably discharged for abuse of alcohol. Substance or alcohol abuse is at times secondary to paraphilia. It disinhibits the victim and enables them to do things he may be willing to do, but unable when sober.

Depression- Often, paraphilias are found to have symptoms of depression. These symptoms may be concurrent with increasingly repetitive and intense occurrences of paraphilic actions. Before Dahmer was arrested, he informed his officer for probation that he had symptoms of depression. He also stated that he could kill himself for losing his employment.

Asperger's Disorder- Dahmer's father said that when Dahmer was still a little child, he could not maintain eye contact. His facial expressions were also wooden, and he would stiffly hold his body. In addition, Dahmer had a hard time interacting with his peers, and emotionally, he was distant. Dahmer said "I could not grasp the complexities of the social part of life. I could not explain why, when children were fond of me. I could not even come up with a plan to win children's affection. I just had no idea how things with other human beings worked.... And as hard as I tried, I could not make people look less unknowable and strange"

Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD)- When he was examined after being arrested for having molested a child aged 13, psychologists discovered that he was evasive, uncooperative, manipulative, lacking insight, unreceptive to change and angry. Dahmer explained to his P.O that his life had no purpose. This was a possible symptom of the kind of chronic emptiness that people with BPD have. In addition, Dahmer's reason for fearing and hating abandonment was strongly justified. When he confessed, Dahmer stated that he murdered his victims in order to stop them from abandoning him. The violent tendencies, which he could only commit if he was drunk- do not qualify as instrumental aggression, just like anti-social people would do to control or intimidate. On the contrary, his violence was a desperate move to prevent him from being abandoned. His identity disturbance, which is a possible BPD aspect, included his denial and inability to embrace his sexuality. Sleeping with dead people was probably also a way of denying his homosexual nature. Just as he put the blame on the children he assaulted, he expressed hatred on the adults he attacked; instead of self-hate. This is a common borderline defense. James Fox stated that Dahmer selected victims that with more flamboyant homosexual tendencies than his. Personality Disorder Not Otherwise Specified: On the checklist for psychopathy, Dahmer's rating was a 22. This was above average, but below the minimum score; 30. He was assigned these disorders, accompanied with Antisocial, Schizotypical and Scizoid traits (autry318, 2016).


Skills necessary to conduct effective forensic psychological assessments

Sageman (2003) states that three skills are necessary: insight of the issues of law to address, skills that are often needed by the legal system's demands and practical ability needed during litigation. These skills help reinforce the overall strategy of the retaining advocate, giving the right audience the testimony, as well as adjourning to the fact finder's prerogative (Sageman, 2003).

Forensic examiners try to help the investigator to interpret evidence or to determine a certain fact. They also give details that are most significant in the psycho-legal context. In testimonies and reports, forensic experts usually give information regarding the examinees' functional capacities, abilities, beliefs, and knowledge. They also address their recommendations and opinions to the psycho-legal issues identified (American Bar Association and American Psychological Association, 2008; Heilbrun, Marczyk, Dematteo, & Mack-Allen, 2007).

Forensic experts learn to anticipate the issues that may come up using clinical examination in some forensic settings. They are also encouraged to look into and qualify their testimony and opinions appropriately. While practicing in the field of forensic….....

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