One of the current trends in homicide research includes developing works based on scientific study and empirical evidence, which offer conclusions that can be used in an operational manner during police investigations. The objective of this study was to identify homicide characteristics from behaviors carried out on the crime scene and victim characteristics associated with those of the perpetrators of these crimes in Spain. The sample consisted of 448 homicide cases from the database of the Homicide Revision Project led by the Office of Coordination and Studies of the Secretary of State and Security. After creating six classification tree models, it was found that the modus operandi of the aggressor and the victim characteristics may permit hypothesizing about the demographic characteristics of the perpetrator (gender, age, and country of origin), his/her criminal record, and the type of relationship with the victim. Furthermore, the importance of the study of victimology during a criminal investigation is highlighted, as it may indirectly offer information about the potential perpetrator. The findings of this study suggest that criminal profiling contributes notably to the decision-making process to establish more rigorous suspect prioritization, improve the management of human resources and materials, and increase the efficiency of criminal investigations.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited