What is the “CSI Effect?”

A) The urge for an individual person to solve a crime.

B) When a cold case is reopened years later and is solved using new evidence.

C) Jurors in a criminal trial expecting perfect scientific evidence.

D) The belief that any crime scene can be perfectly profiled to find a killer.

ANSWER: The CSI Effect, inspired by forensic television shows such as CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, is one of the ways how forensic shows have influenced the public’s perceptions of the legal system. Jurors have started to expect undeniable forensic evidence in trials and place less weight on circumstantial evidence. Jurors are also more confident in forensic and DNA evidence, which can lead to a higher conviction rate.

Want to learn more? Check out our resource on The CSI Effect Explained.

If you guessed answer C, you’re correct!

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🧠 Doctors used to study the shape of a person’s head to determine whether or not a person was likely to commit crimes. What is this study called?

A) Craniology

B) Phrenology

C) Physiognomy

D) Craniometry

ANSWER: Doctors used to study phrenology! Despite its initial popularity, phrenology started losing support from scientists in the 20th century due to methodological criticisms and failure to replicate various findings. We’re not surprised though…it’s hard to think today that lumps and bumps in your skull would determine whether or not you’d be a killer!

If you guessed answer B, you’re correct!

True or False?

Forensic investigators can always match a bullet with the gun that fired it.

ANSWER: False! If a gun has been modified after firing, or if the bullet is badly damaged, the bullet will no longer match the barrel and a link cannot be confirmed. And, with the rise in popularity of ghost guns, this type of work is getting more difficult.

Which song by The Beatles led Charles Manson to believe that a race war was coming?

A) Hey Jude

B) Let It Be

C) Helter Skelter

D) Strawberry Fields Forever

ANSWER: Manson believed Helter Skelter served as inspiration for the killing spree he orchestrated.

Paul McCartney spoke about the incident in his authorized biography Many Years from Now, saying: “I was using the symbol of a helter skelter (a playground slide) as a ride from the top to the bottom—the rise and fall of the Roman Empire. This was the demise, the going down. You could have thought of it as a rather cute title but it’s since taken on all sorts of ominous overtones because Manson picked it up as an anthem.”

If you guessed answer C, you’re correct!

Who did David Berkowitz, known as the “Son of Sam,” claim to receive orders from to kill others?

A) A police officer

B) The voices in his head

C) His father Sam

D) His neighbor’s dog

ANSWER: Contrary to what the name entails, David Berkowitz claimed he was taking orders from someone named Sam…and in his confession, he says it was from his neighbor’s dog. The strange thing is, Sam was not the name of the neighbor’s dog! The dog, a black Labrador, was actually named Harvey.

If you guessed answer D, you’re correct!

Which real-life notorious criminal is portrayed by Johnny Depp in the 2009 movie ‘Public Enemies’?

Hint: This criminal’s group was accused of robbing 24 banks and four police stations!

A) John Dillinger

B) Al Capone

C) Baby Face Nelson

D) Clyde Barrow

ANSWER: American gangster John Dillinger was the leader of the Dillinger Gang during the Great Depression. He was imprisoned several times and escaped twice. At the height of his criminality, he personally orchestrated at least 12 separate bank robberies between June of 1933 and June of 1934. He died from police gunfire while trying to escape a theater in July of 1934. 

If you guessed answer A, you’re correct!

This Alaskan serial killer — known as the “Butcher Baker” —  would kidnap women and fly them deep inside the wilderness and let them go. Unfortunately, this created an illusion of hope, but this sick killer wanted to hunt the women and take their lives.

Hint: Thanks to a survivor who escaped and left her shoes behind as evidence, this monster was arrested.

A) Israel Keyes 

B) Robert Hansen 

C) Peter Sutcliffe

D) Richard Ramirez  

ANSWER: Robert Hansen was arrested after survivor Cindy Paulson escaped his aircraft and flagged down a truck driver. She was able to describe Hansen perfectly to the police, share that he had a stutter, identify his plane, help map out other possible victims, and even prove she left her shoes behind as evidence.

If you guessed answer B, you’re correct!

Andrew Cunanan was an American spree killer who murdered five people over the course of three months in the spring of 1997. Who was Cunanan’s final victim?

A) John Lennon

B) Sharon Tate

C) Notorious B.I.G.

D) Gianni Versace

ANSWER: Andrew Cunanan’s final victim was world-renowned Italian fashion designer Gianni Versace. Versace was murdered on the steps outside of his Miami mansion on July 15, 1997. Although a motive has never been revealed, it’s believed that Cunanan developed a hatred towards wealthy gay men because he thought he was HIV positive and wanted revenge on the world.

If you guessed answer D, you’re correct!

🧠 True or false?

If a criminal defendant is found to be not guilty by reason of inanity, they are released from custody.

ANSWER: False! Not only is it incredibly hard to prove that a criminal defendant is not guilty by reason of insanity, but if they are, the person is committed to a forensic psychiatric hospital (or similar mental healthcare setting) rather than being released. They will remain hospitalized for an unspecified amount of time — sometimes more time than the original crime sentence.

In his 23-year career in the Colorado Springs Police Department, Lt. Joe Kenda of “Homicide Hunter” says he only worked on one serial killer case. Who is that 1980s serial killer?

A) Jeffrey Dahmer

B) Carroll Cole

C) Ronald Lee White

D) Joseph James DeAngelo

ANSWER: When the trail goes cold on a string of heartless murders, Lt. Joe Kenda finds himself connecting the dots in his first and only search for a serial killer: Ronald Lee White. White would stab and dismember his victims before scattering their body parts across multiple locations in Pueblo County, Colorado. Kenda recently detailed his search in Investigation Discovery’s 2-hour Homicide Hunter special.

If you guessed answer C, you’re correct!

Three prisoners famously escaped from what prison surrounded by water in 1962?

A) Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary

B) Eastern State Penitentiary

C) Texas State Penitentiary

D) Stanford Prison

ANSWERFrank Lee Morris, Clarence Anglin, and John William Anglin escaped the Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary.

The trio put decoy heads made of soap and plaster in their beds, fooling guards into thinking they were in their cells. They escaped through a kitchen smokestack and strung 50 raincoats together to make a raft.

If you guessed answer A, you’re correct!

Time to put your ‘Criminal Minds’ hat on! 🎩

In Criminal Profiling, an “Offender’s Signature” is…

A) When an offender names themself for the media

B) Extremely violent behavior

C) Behavior that’s unnecessary to the crime

D) When an offender signs their name at the scene

ANSWERIn Criminal Profiling, an “Offender’s Signature” is behavior that the criminal does that’s unnecessary to the crime. A “signature” has also been called a “calling card.” The purpose of the behavior is that it serves a greater psychological or emotional need for the offender.

A light-hearted example is the two burglars from Home Alone who clog a sink and leave the water running at every house they rob!

If you guessed answer C, you’re correct!