Criminal Psychology

by Jacqueline B. Helfgott, PhD, Editor
Foreword by J. Reid Meloy


Notable work in the field of criminal psychology during its nascency includes psychiatrists who created a psychological profile of Adolf Hitler to help identify Nazi war criminals after World War II, as well as a psychiatrist who drew up an uncannily accurate profile of the "Mad Bomber" of New York City in the 1950s. Today's criminal psychologists continue their endeavors to better understand, capture, treat, and cure offenders—and deter or prevent their crimes.

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Cover image for Criminal Psychology

April 2013


Pages 1689
Volumes 4
Size 6 1/8x9 1/4
Topics Psychology/Abnormal
  • Award Winner!




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This comprehensive, four-volume reference set on the subject of criminal psychology includes contributions from top scholars and practitioners in the field, explaining new and emerging theory and research in the study of the criminal mind and criminal behavior.

Unfortunately, criminal behavior surrounds us in our society—from petty theft and vandalism to multimillion-dollar white-collar crime to shocking terrorism attempts and school killings. Invariably, one of the first questions is, "Why did they do it?" Criminal psychology seeks to solve this complex puzzle.

In this four-volume reference work, a unparalleled team of leading experts offer an exhaustive look at the history, developments, emerging and classic research issues, controversies, and victories in the expanding field of criminal psychology. The first volume examines the general theories in the study of criminal psychology. The second volume focuses more specifically on research of criminal behavior and crime types, while the last two volumes delve into criminal justice and forensic applications. The comprehensive content allows readers to better understand criminal behavior and appreciate the specific criminal justice and forensic settings in which this theory and research is applied, such as criminal profiling, forensic assessment of danger, and correctional rehabilitation and offender reentry.


  • Documents the role of criminal psychology in crisis intervention, law enforcement investigations, criminal profiling, adjudication and sentencing, forensic assessment and prediction of dangerousness, correctional rehabilitation and management, juvenile justice, and offender reentry
Author Info

Jacqueline B. Helfgott, PhD, is professor and chair of the Criminal Justice Department at Seattle University, Seattle, WA. Her published works include Criminal Behavior: Theories, Typologies, and Criminal Justice and articles on psychopathy, offender reentry, and correctional programs in journals including Criminal Justice and Behavior, International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology, Journal of Forensic Psychology Practice, and Criminal Psychology. Helfgott holds a doctorate in administration of justice from Pennsylvania State University.



"Relevant, current, and substantive . . . readers will benefit from the richness of the data presented and gain understanding of the multifaceted nature of criminal psychology. The set will serve readers across all the social sciences. Summing Up: Essential."Choice

"Criminal Psychology edited by Jacqueline Helfgott is a very impressive four-volume series, covering virtually all of the areas in current studies of the psychology of criminal behavior from clinical, neurological, and social psychological perspectives. . . . The four volumes are a remarkable undertaking, and, for the most part, Helfgott succeeds in presenting a coherent and well-integrated set. . . . [T]his is an excellent and remarkable set that . . .meets its goal of providing the most up-to-date research and clinical input into the study of criminal psychology and integrating the findings as well."PsycCRITIQUES


2013 Outstanding Academic Title — Choice

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