The Perfect Crime

Stefan Timmermans

in Postmortem

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print June 2006 | ISBN: 9780226803982
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226804002 | DOI:
The Perfect Crime

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This chapter explores the professional practices that allow specific clusters of homicides to remain undetected or to become so-called perfect crimes. It defines perfect crimes as those crimes that are never discovered and this is exemplified by investigators' failure to identify a corpse as a homicide victim. This chapter argues that getting away with murder does not depend on a mythical battle between evil personalities and an astute detective but, rather, follows from the “good” features of death investigation. It explains some homicide goes undiscovered because of medical examiners' dependence on pathological methods which makes classifying some deaths as homicides extremely difficult.

Keywords: perfect crimes; homicide; evil personalities; astute detective; medical examiners; pathological methods; classification of death

Chapter.  16942 words. 

Subjects: Health, Illness, and Medicine

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