I'm able to offer the following services
As the head of the SAPS Investigative Psychology Section, which performed similar functions as the FBI’s Behavioural Analysis Units (BAUs) I was fortunate enough to receive a wide range of specialised training not available to most psychologists unless they were previously in law enforcement. I had extensive training from exFBI profilers, NCIS crime scene experts, an NCIS Operational Psychologist, and ex-Royal Canadian Mounted Police Profilers. I also spent some time at the FBI’s Behavioural Analysis Units learning and sharing ideas and experiences.
In short, Offender Profiling, or Criminal Investigative Analysis, is aimed at assisting investigators to determine the most likely kind of person to have committed a violent or sexual crime. This helps investigators understand what kind of person they are investigating and can assist in narrowing down the investigative focus in terms of possible offenders. Offender profiling can also be done in cases where threats are made, including threats of extortion.
Equivocal (Undetermined) Death Analysis
Sometimes it is not clear if a person’s death is due to a murder, accident, or suicide. When it is unclear (aka equivocal) it can help to have an equivocal death analysis to try and find an answer to this puzzle. This is often relevant in cases where an insurance policy won’t pay out if the death is deemed a suicide, or where a family is concerned that the police are too quick to label something as a suicide/accident/murder and they would like a second opinion for peace of mind.
In cases where someone is feeling threatened or concerned about the actions of another person, which raises concerns about their safety, a professional threat assessment can be conducted using evidence-based practices to determine the real level of concern. For example, a person has received death threats, or someone is behaving in a strange manner (possibly due to mental health issues), and the receiver is concerned. Typically people hire security, without first having a proper professional assessment of the situation. Often the threat assessment is accompanied by a threat management plan to help reduce the threat level. The types of situations include stalking cases, death threats, workplace violence concerns, domestic violence situations, and concerning behaviour in educational settings.
These are similar to threat assessments, but often occur in clinical or employment settings where an understanding of the possible risks a person may pose, is needed. These are therefore often done without a specific threat having been made. These include situations where an employee has engaged in concerning behaviour, or is experiencing mental health issues and the company would like to know what risks may be posed, and also how to best manage the employee upon their return to work.
Often people lack skills when it comes to interviewing witnesses and persons-of-interest in sensitive matters. A properly conducted interview can help shed light on an event that happened, providing insight and clarity as to what took place.
In workplaces where ethics violations have taken place, such as workplace harassment or other inappropriate behaviour, a different type of investigation is required compared to a typical forensic investigation. My background in psychology and investigations can be advantageous when conducting such investigations.
Investigative Psychology Services
Expert Witness Services
Sentencing ReportsIn a criminal trial, once an accused person has been found guilty, the court then has to decide what to do with the accused. The court has to take into account the accused person’s circumstances, society, and the crime committed. To effectively do so the court requires a sentencing report which looks at the risk factors of the individual, and evaluates what can be changed to reduce the person’s risk. This type of evidence can also be presented at disciplinary hearings.
Criminal capacity reportsCourts are often faced with the situation where someone has committed a crime, but there is concern that the person was not in a ‘right’ state of mind when they committed the crime. Our law states that a person must be in control of themselves when they committed the crime, before they can be put on trial. Here a psychologist can assist by conducting a thorough assessment to try and determine the accused person’s state of mind at the time of the offence.
Competency to stand trial reportsOur law also states that if you are going to put someone on trial they must currently be in a position to understand what is going on in court, and also to consult with their lawyer, so they can contribute to their defense. This is called ‘competency to stand trial’. These assessments are aimed at helping determine the accused’s current state of mind.
Review of expert’s reportsOften legal practitioners would like an opinion on a report they have received in a legal matter, whether it be criminal or civil in nature. I have extensive experience in reviewing reports by other mental health experts and criminologists, and assisting legal practitioners prepare for the cross examination of such witnesses.
I have many years’ experience providing local and international training to law enforcement officials, prosecutors, criminologists and psychologists, on a wide variety of related topics. I also give talks to members of the public about many of these topics. These topics range from investigative issues, psychologically motivated crimes, expert witness issues, threat assessment and management, and the like. Please contact me for the full range of topics I can present on. Some examples of training I offer, which can be adapted to the particular audience requesting the training, include:
Psychologically motivated crimes
These are crimes like serial murder, serial rape, muti murder, sexual murder, intimate partner murder, sexual burglary, child sexual abuse & child pornography, and stalking.
Mental illness issues
These are issues such as Psychopathy and Anti-Social Personality Disorder, Paraphilias (unusual sexual interests e.g. Paedophilia, Exhibitionism, Voyeurism, Sexual Sadism), Mood disorders, and Psychotic disorders including Schizophrenia.
Threat assessment and management
How to identify, assess and manage threats and concerning behaviours inside and outside the workplace.
Many companies are at a loss when faced with workplace violence. This course is aimed at helping you identify, understand, assess and manage workplace violence and concerning behaviour in the workplace.
Psycholegal courtwork and the criminal justice system
How to engage in psycholegal courtwork, how to testify in court, and the typical phases that a mental health and allied professional can assist the court in the criminal justice system.
For legal practitioners: How to cross examine a psychologist in court
Many legal practitioners are at a loss when it comes to evaluating a report, and cross-examining a psychologist. Here we explore key factors to look out for in a report, how to determine if the psychologist is an expert for the purposes of their evidence, and how to prepare for cross-examination.
- Equivocal death analysis- murder, suicide, or accident?
- How to manage product tampering and extortion cases.
- Open-and-shut cases, why they are never open-and-shut.