What is a Profiler with the FBI’s National Center for Analysis of Violent Crime?

The National Center for Analysis of Violent Crime (NCAVC) is a major branch of the FBI’s Crisis Incident Response Group.  This department investigates and researches the behavior of serial and violent criminal behavior.  Using a wide array of historical, computerized and psychological tools, NCAVC professionals analyze aberrant criminal actions.

Established in 1984 at the direction of President Ronald Reagan, NCAVC has become a national authority on serial homicides, rapes, bombings, terrorist, child exploitation, and extortion.  Manned by Special Agents as well as leading criminal psychologists, law enforcement experts and behavioral analysts, the NCAVC provides critical insights about perpetrator behavior that can help officers track, identify and apprehend them.

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Commonly known as profilers, NCAVC professionals use the latest research and technology to explain past behavior and predict future actions.  They utilize similar case histories to model what motivates the perpetrator, how they are escaping capture and how they are likely to escalate their aberrant behavior.

In order to become an FBI profiler, candidates must possess extensive law enforcement experience as a Special Agent or similar career.  For the research positions, candidates should possess superlative academic and research credentials.

Profiler Job Description

In order to serve in this elite department, NCAVC professionals must possess the following competencies:

  • Review and analyze investigative materials like crime photos, evidence and witness reports
  • Discuss with field personnel the details of a crime in order to provide relevant advice and insights
  • Maintain knowledge of cases and investigative techniques relevant to a specialized crime field
  • Train Special Agents in the use of behavioral analysis techniques so they may provide investigative support in the field
  • Attend conferences and liaise with other law enforcement personnel in order to obtain information about psychology and behavior relevant to violent crime
  • Conduct research into aberrant psychology and other aspects of violent or serial criminal behavior

Profiler Salary

The National Center for Analysis of Violent Crime is staffed by active Special Agents as well as non-FBI professionals.  Special Agents fall within the Bureau’s pay regime which provides its employees with at least a GS-10 pay grade.  For those Special Agents who remain active in the field, this pay grade may be elevated up to GS-13, but for those who choose a supervisor, instructor or executive track, it is possible to obtain a GS-14 or GS-15 rating. In 2012 the General Schedule system for federal employees was stipulated as

General Schedule Grade
Pay Range
General Schedule 10
General Schedule 13
General Schedule 14
General Schedule 15

These figures only indicate the base salaries and are usually modified 12.5 to 28.7 percent for cost of living.  Special Agents also qualify for Law Enforcement Availability Pay which is an additional 25 percent of base salary plus COLA.

Professionals working in NCAVC without FBI credentials primarily serve as research professionals. These employees often possess the highest academic credentials in order to perform many of these technical research functions.  An advanced degree is often a prerequisite and therefore many of these professionals receive salaries comparable to those of the Special Agents.

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