Excellent mini tutorial on the difference between signature and modus operandi.
Are they the same?
No, they are distinctly different because one feeds on emotional needs, while the other is a procedure.
Modus operandi is the method that is used to commit the crime and signature behavior is what helps to serve the criminal’s emotional and psychological needs.
A modus operandi or MO refers to the method or procedure that a criminal uses when committing a crime. It comes from the Latin phrase meaning “mode of operation”. Basically, all criminals have a method of operation that encompasses the habits, techniques, and any peculiarities of behavior. The method can stay the same, but it will often grow and change over time as the criminal becomes more skillful at committing a specific crime.
If an investigator or detective establishes the MO…
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