Customer Reviews: Criminal Profiling, Third Edition: An Introduction to Behavioral Evidence Analysis
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on July 15, 1999
I have read all the books out there on profiling and nothing comes close to Turvey's book. Turvey actually spells out how one should go about developing a profile instead of talking about war stories and trying to explain why only FBI profilers can profile. Anyone who has every wished to learn about profiling or crime scene reconstruction should read this book. It will demonstrate that anyone with a background in psychology, forensic science, crime scene reconstruction, and investigative techniques can learn to profile. It is not a gift or talent given to FBI agents or FBI trained fellows. It is a skill that can be learned and improved upon, just like any other skill. The book is written is plain english and is a very easy read. So if you really want to develop your profiling and reconstructive skills this book should be on your shelf.
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on December 27, 2009
I just received this book yesterday and I've been thumbing through pages and really enjoying the information and things I've found. However, when I was reading reviews here before it was purchased, I never found anyone warning about the content. I've read lots of John Douglas books, but he's never actually put photos in his books that people would call disturbing. This book, on the other hand, has some SERIOUSLY disturbing pictures in it. If you think you really want to go into the field of criminal profiling and that you're really ready to see these pictures, then fine - get it. But I can guarantee you that if you're still not sure about this career, I would recommend buying a much tamer book on profiling. This book is for those who are seriously considering doing this, or for those who really are on the road to having careers in this area. The pictures really took me by surprise, and coincidentally gave me a very restless night. I wasn't prepared for such images! So just a warning: It's a great and very insightful book, but if you have a weak stomach, DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT get this book. If you really think you can handle the content, it is a wonderful book that will teach you lots.
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on November 7, 1999
Mr. Turvey's book is a very informative approach to Criminal Profiling. Without a doubt this work is an excellent addition to the many books on Serial Crime and Criminal Profiling that have flooded the market place recently. It is a text book approach to this multidisaplinary topic which does add some originality to this latest addition to the genre. However, the author takes a few brief departures throughout his discourses to throw out subtle, but negative critiques of retired and former FBI profilers. Turvey, though well educated, is still a bit too new to the profession to come off this judgemental of those that have gone before him. His somewhat deliberate bashing and relatively inaccurate criticisms of Profiler's John Douglas, Robert Ressler and Joel Norris PHD, really have no place in an otherwise excellent work. Turvey's claim that Douglas and Ressler advocate and employ only the inductive method of Criminal Profiling is ofcourse inaccurate as well. These statements are unfortunate and one would only have to read John Douglas's book 'Mind Hunter', or Ressler's 'I have lived in the monster', to know that these comments are false. Those who are interested in a more applied approach to Criminal Profiling, with fewer memoirs, will not be disappointed though, it is packed with usefull information. I would however recommend a more cost effective and entertaining book, John Douglas's new book 'Anatomy of Motive'.
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on January 26, 2004
Mr. Turvey has done an outstanding job in assembling and presenting critical, fundamental concepts on behavioral analysis of crimes and criminals based upon what the physical evidence describes. The introduction by John Thornton, PhD, one of the worlds leading forensic scientists and authors is an endorsement that says it all. Each human act is unique in the context of the mindset of the offender and his behavior at the time of the crime. This book describes the effective analyis and interpretation based upon the uniqueness of each crime scene evidence and event, keeping the investigator on track. This book should be required reading for all "introduction to criminal investigation" classes for both law enforcement and the defense bar. The book demonstrates the importance of merging and considering all aspects of victimology, forensic science, psychology and good old fashioned investigative work. Mr. Turvey does an excellent job of promoting the deductive, individualized analysis of a crime. Although it is tempting to look at the "statistical" data of similar scenes, the inductive process can be distracting and misleading. Yes, he takes a few jabs at some of FBI's legends, however it is more likely that he attacks the process and not the individual. For those of us who have worked with the Feds and enjoyed their friendship, it does evoke a chuckle or two...
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on November 14, 2009
Having been a Corrections and Police Officer and a student in offender profiling and forensic science this is a great book. If you are a lay person and looking for an "instruction manual" on criminal profiling this is NOT the book for you. Turvey provides a very critical, yet well suported review of the state of criminal profiling as it exists today. He offers a fresh insight into the field. If you are a professional investigator or law enforcement or corrections profesional and want to seriously study criminal profiling then I highly suggest you purchase this text and take his courses.
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on November 14, 2000
As a student of Criminal Justice and Forensics, I find this book an absolute must. I regard it as my Bible for my studies. It is easy to read and I feel that Brent and his fellow contributors have explained everything in detail so well, that even an absolute beginner (or, as in my case, an absolute idiot!) in this field would have no trouble at all in following the explanations. It helps me tremendously when writing the obligatory essays one has to write during the course of the semesters and I certainly attribute the reading of this book to the high marks I have been getting. On a more personal level, I find Brent Turvey and Barbara Turvey are also approachable on any subject that a person may be unclear about and have no hesitation in assisting students like myself. For on-line courses, this book is an absolute necessity for those interested in criminal profiling and for students of criminal justice and criminology such as myself. It was the first book I bought when I embarked on my studies and 18 months later is still the one I turn to first when I need to research something.
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on October 11, 2007
Brent Turvey has placed some nice pictures and logical ideas in his book however, the reader must keep in mind that Mr Turvey is a self proclaimed "criminal profiler." The book is worth a flip through but not recommended to be on your shelf, if you work in the field of forensic psychology. It is this reader's recommendation to stick to books written by Dr. David Canter, Dr. Laurence Alison and academic journals if you are involved on hands on work in the field.
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on January 10, 2007
The author is a bit condescending in his writing style. He is very clear that HIS way is the ONLY way, and he never shies from insults. Clinicians who practice using a Freudian model are "voyeuristic," and anyone who has an interest in this subject must prove themselves in his method or else they're just morbid and disgusting people who have watched too many movies. Maybe he forgot he came into this field too.

There are a few useful things in here, but I'm sure there are much better books with a more neutral approach. I found the author annoying and unfunny.
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on January 20, 2007
Please do not buy this book. Mr. Turvey's flawed logic regarding "inductive" and "deductive" profiling is flat out incorrect. He is jealous of the likes of Gregg McCrary, Robert Ressler, and John Douglas (individuals who have actually solved crimes), and his "textbook" is a weak attempt to discredit and insult the FBI. The tragic part of what this man has done is the thousands of dollars he takes from hundreds of American citizens who think they can spend 500 dollars on his online course and then transform themselves into criminal profilers. The ONLY profilers work at the FBI and at other state departments of investigation, those actually responsible for solving crimes. Anyone can be a Monday morning quarterback and testify for desperate defense attornys who would do anything to get their client off.

A Word of Caution from former FBI agent Gregg McCrary:
There are a number of pretenders who claim to be "profilers." The common traits found among these individuals is little or no formal training in profiling and some have no investigative experience at all. The lack of training and experience has not stopped some of these individuals from authoring books about profiling. Some offer workshops or courses on the internet and proclaim that they can teach you to become a profiler - for a fee of course.
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on September 11, 2000
I'm a scientific type and used to reading serious texts. This book had all the look and feel of being written by a "true believer" who had decided on "the truth" (i.e., his way) and who developed a body of facts, much of which could be useful, that he wished to share with the audience. If he truly wants profiling to become a respected field, he will need to (1) deepen his knowledge of the scientific method, (2) criticize the opinions and methods of others with whom he disagrees in a serious and credible scientific fashion, and (3) attempt to get some control over what comes across (rightly or not) as a healthy case of narcissism ("I'm right; you're wrong; end discussion"). That said, the book contains a plentitude of information (selected and presented from his particular point of view), much of which will help others with different but equally legitimate points of view (given the current state of the "science") become exposed to a possibly unfamiliar database. Worth reading if its serious scientific flaws of argument are kept in mind.
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