Forensic Psychologists often assess offenders to determine whether they’re fit to plead their case in court, or are likely to be violent in the future. There are a number of important issues to be considered in this assessment and these are outlined here:

  • Family background

    • Any history of abuse?

    • Offender ever removed from family?

    • Any criminal close relatives?

  • Criminal background

    • Amount and variety of criminal convictions?

    • Types of victims? (Particularly their age and gender)

  • Education

    • Achievements at school? (Or lack of them)

    • Age left school?

    • Literacy skill level?

    • Numeracy skill level?

  • Attitudes

    • Opinions about crime and criminality?

    • Justifications of his or her offences?

    • Any processes of denial or minimisation?

  • Psychological characteristics

    • General intelligence level?

    • Any indications of mental illness?

    • Any indication of personality disorder?

  • Domestic circumstances

    • History of intimate relationships?

    • Current intimate relationships?

    • Any children?

    • Occupational history?

    • Residential circumstances?

    • Economic circumstances?