What is VICAP -
Violent Criminal Apprehension Program?

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The Violent Criminal Apprehension Program (ViCAP) is a department within the FBI’s National Center for the Analysis of Violent Behavior (NCAVC).  The mission of the ViCAP is to assist law enforcement agencies across the country and around the world identify and apprehend violent criminals. Initially created in 1985 to study the behavior of serial killers and rapists, ViCAP has grown to include solved and unsolved homicides, kidnappings, missing persons, sexual assaults and unidentified persons.

ViCAPs Database of Violent Crime

ViCAP operates the ViCAP-Web, the nation’s largest repository of criminal cases that involved violence.  In 2008, the FBI granted access to ViCAP-Web to all authorized law enforcement agencies at the national, state and local level, further enabling closer collaboration and cooperation among these organizations.  ViCAP has been instrumental in the resolution of many high profile highway related serial killings including the I-5 Killer and the Beltway Sniper.

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ViCAP personnel utilize this extensive database to help develop psychological profiles of perpetrators which can assist investigators in detecting and capturing perpetrators before they can continue their criminal activities.  Using behavioral analysis of hundreds of similar psychological pathologies, ViCAP experts can facilitate investigative techniques like media releases, interview protocols, multi-agency coordination, prosecution and trial strategies, and critical incident analysis.

Job Description for Agents in the Violent Criminal Apprehension Program

ViCAP provides resources for the resolution of long-term cases including missing persons, unidentified persons and fugitive apprehension.  Using the latest modeling and crime recreation techniques, ViCAP is capable of solving decades old cases and provide IDs for bodily remains.

ViCAP jobs involve being responsible for fulfilling the following duties:

  • Maintain the ViCAP-Web database and allow authorized law enforcement personnel acces
  • Coordinate operations during multi-jurisdictional law enforcement operations
  • Provide psychological and physical descriptions of potential perpetrators
  • Recreate the bodies of long deceased bodies
  • Identify individuals who have been kidnapped and given new identities
  • Reconstruct violent crimes in order to ascertain the motives and methods of the perpetrator
  • Provide law enforcement personnel with investigative support as they attempt to resolve violent crimes
  • Help formulate press releases in order to draw out perpetrators
  • Assist in the questioning of suspects through psychological manipulation

Violent Criminal Apprehension Program Salary

ViCAP personnel include Special Agents as well as researchers and law enforcement experts who provide investigative support.  Like all FBI personnel, the members of ViCAP are provided a salary according to their General Schedule designation, which is often indicative of seniority, academic background and professional credentials.  Special Agents qualify for a minimum of a GS-10 pay rating, and may achieve up to a GS-13 rating if they remain in the field.  Special Agents who attain a supervisor or executive position may succeed to the GS-14 or GS-15 level.  Support personnel also fall within this pay regime. For 2012, the salary ranges associated with these pay levels were

General Schedule Grade
Pay Range
General Schedule 10
$45771-$59505
General Schedule 11
$50287-$65371
General Schedule 12
$60274-$78355
General Schedule 13
$71674-$93175
General Schedule 14
$84697-$110104
General Schedule 15
$99628-$129517

These salaries are often adjusted for cost of living.  Field personnel are also provided a Law Enforcement Availability Pay (LEAP) bonus of 25 percent of salary.

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