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Modus operandi

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Title: Modus operandi  
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Collection: Criminal Investigation, Criminology, Latin Words and Phrases, Offender Profiling
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Modus operandi

Modus operandi (plural modi operandi) is a Latin phrase, approximately translated as "method of operation".[1] The term is used to describe someone's habits of working, particularly in the context of business or criminal investigations. In English, it is often shortened to M.O.

Contents

  • Term 1
  • Plural 2
  • See also 3
  • References 4
  • Further reading 5
  • External links 6

Term

The term is often used in police work when discussing crime and addressing the methods employed by the perpetrators. It is also used in criminal profiling,[2] where it can help in finding clues to the offender's psychology.[3] It largely consists of examining the actions used by the individual(s) to execute the crime, prevent its detection and/or facilitate escape.[1] A suspect's modus operandi can assist in their identification, apprehension, or repression, and can also be used to determine links between crimes.[4]

In business, modus operandi is used to describe a firm's preferred means of doing business and interacting with other firms.

Plural

The plural is modi operandi. The word operandi is a gerundium in the genitive case, "of operating"; gerundia can never be pluralised in Latin, as opposed to gerundiva. When a noun with an attribute in the genitive is pluralised, only the head noun normally changes, just as in English with "of": "a fact of life, two facts of life".

See also

References

  1. ^ a b Douglas, J. E. and A. W. Burgess, A. G. Burgess, R. K. Ressler. Crime classification manual (John Wiley & Sons, 2006) ISBN 0-7879-8501-5, p. 19-21.
  2. ^ Vronsky, R. Serial Killers (Berkley Books, 2004) ISBN 0-425-19640-2, p. 412.
  3. ^ Hazelwood, R. R, A. W. Burgess, Practical Aspects of Rape Investigation, (CRC Press, 2001) ISBN 0-8493-0076-2, p. 517.
  4. ^ Berg, B.L. Criminal Investigation (McGraw-Hill, 2008) ISBN 978-0-07-340124-9

Further reading

  • Levinson, D. Encyclopedia of Crime and Punishment (SAGE, 2002). ISBN 0-7619-2258-X.
  • Carlo, P. The Night Stalker: The Life and Crimes of Richard Ramirez (Pinnacle Books 1996). ISBN 0-7860-1362-1.

External links

  • The dictionary definition of modus operandi at Wiktionary
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