Police Psychology | Fetishes and Philias

by Gary S. Aumiller, Ph.D.  ABPP


Do you know you can get pictures of the feet of Hollywood’s top stars?  Want to see Jennifer Aniston’s feet up close?  How about Charlize Theron or Minka Kelly?  What to see what Brad Pitt has been playing footies with dsc00918the past ten years: look up Angelina Jolie’s feet?  Or maybe his rumored clandestine squeeze, just type in Marion Cotillard and gander at those French tootsies.  Yes, it is all there on a site called “Wiki Feet,” the foot fetish dream site.  Between 14% to 25% of males have a foot fetish, and wiki feet is well-known in foot fetish circles.

The cops that work in computer crimes say pictures of sex with animals is next highest up there on people’s computer and “scat” fetishes rank real high too.  Don’t tell a “scat” fetisher to eat sh-t because that gets them off (coprophilia).  There is a whole world of untowardly sexual focus and perversions out there that most people aren’t even remotely aware of.  And most of it passes through a shrink’s office at some time or another.  So let’s get into what “floats your boat” or at least the other boats in your harbor.

What is a Fetish or a Philia?

A fetish is a sexual attraction to an object, item of clothing or a body part that is not essential to coitus.  A paraphilia is very similar but described as when a person sexual arousal and/or gratification involves acts or behaviors that are atypical or extreme.  What’s the difference between the two?  Nobody’s really clear on that and sometimes they overlap, but the paraphilia seems to describe things that are more extreme, more of patterns, and more dangerous.  So Sadomasochism in sexual acts is more of a philia, whilst focusing on women’s underwear is more of a fetish.  Outside of sex, the word fetish was used for something that had magical powers or spirits in it.  Makes you wonder about the world view of sex, huh?

It is said that fetishes are tied to quality of childhood experiences, like a quarter of males in this world had sucking toes in their background as a kid.  I am not sure of that.  It seems that both of these are a combination of genetic and experiences in early childhood at many different times and levels.  Remember no one cause can be chosen for most things in this world.  It seems to happen mostly in males, or perhaps women are better suppressing it or much less honest about it and it is happening in both sexes equally.   Or perhaps men just have a much stronger sex drive.  Whatever your explanation is, it is more likely to happen in men’s lives.

Kinky, Freaky or Just Plain Whacko!

Now to the real meat of the matter, when does a fetish or paraphilia go from being a little off, to being the function of a major freak that needs to be corralled.  Kissing, smelling, licking a boot or two is not a problem or at least not a problem if it is behind a closed door.  Having sex with animals (zoophilia), eating someone’s “scat” or drinking their blood (haematophilia) start to get out there, even if it is behind a closed door.  There are potential health issues that get added in.  Going after kids (pedophilia) or elderly women (gerontophilia) is a major problem.  And remember in the extreme cases, often paraphilias go together.  I had a cop tell me a story of going to a known supermodel’s house and her and her husband offered his partner and him some water to drink.  They of course didn’t take it following the rules and procedures manual.  Well once they discovered DVD’s and looked at them, the couple had used the same water glasses offered to them to hold their own urine and eat each other’s feces.  Then the DVD’s showed some sex play with children.  Keep your heads up when you are dealing with paraphilias especially.  They run together.

In the movie “Eyes Wide Shut,” with Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman, Cruise’s character stumbles on a cult of power hungry grown men who were into S & M and had a few young prostitutes ritualistically killed.  It was a wild sexual fantasy movie, but those groups do exist and it has not been uncommon for people to describe coming upon them by mistake or finding out their husband was involved.  Don’t rule anything out in the sexual arena because you were not aware of it before.  A big mistake for young and sometimes old-timer cops my age.

Prelude to Suicide

Another real important thing to consider.  When you arrest someone for a paraphilia behavior, remember some are sociopaths and are dangerous because they have no conscious.  Others actually feel very embarrassed by what they were doing and feel a strange kind of relief for being caught.  But neither like the consequences that go with a sexual behavior.  Jails are not too kind to sexual deviants just going in, at least that is the perception.  They may have a strong desire to end their life before they find out.  Look for a suicide behavior, or even a suicide-by-cop attempt.  A paraphilia person knows they are a little strange and may just want it to end.  I have done evaluations on these guys for the court, and almost all talk about wanting to end it all.  I am contacting court many times and asking for suicide watches.  And a few have succeeding in suicide after the evaluation and before sentencing.  Just be careful.  The cop is always to blame regardless of the threat in society so take precaution.

A Small Fetish Joke

 A man was arrested for having sex with farm animals in a small town.  His brother was going to hire a lawyer and gave the man a choice of two of the most successful lawyers – one was good as trial lawyer and one was good with jury selection.  He told his brother to make the choice and went to trial.  He didn’t know who his brother had picked and was in dismay until he heard something in court to change his mind.  As prosecuting attorney called the first witnesses, the witness said he heard a tremendous screech from the goat pen, like a human crying, and went to look and found it was a goat bleating out at the top of his lungs.  One juror turned to another and said under his breath, “the good ones sound like that when you get them, you know.”  He won the case.

Most fetishes are harmless and not against the law (although it is neither in the joke).  There’s a large number of people that can at least relate.  But the people are usually not bad people, just have a kinky side to them.  When it gets to be a stronger philia, watch yourself.  Don’t get too caught up with the people or the problem.  They tend to easily run awry of the law.


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Police Psychology | Lies, Damned Lies and Statistics

by Gary S. Aumiller, Ph.D.  ABPP


I can’t wait to see the polls this week.  Two weeks ago Trump was behind by 10 points, earlier last week by 5 points, the end of last week by 2 points and yesterday he was ahead by 3 points in the states that mattered.  Yeah right!  I can’t wait to see what kind of fantasy the news wants us to buy this week.  Not that these really aren’t the polls, but the metholine chartds and presentation do not seem very accurate anymore.  In fact, statistics do not seem accurate anymore in general.  You can’t trust them.  It brings back the old quote from Mark Twain “There are three types of lies:  lies, damned lies and statistics.”

In 2001, a student and professors dealt with rumors that Greek Hospitals were doing large number of appendix operations on Albanian citizens.  It was not reported in the statistics.  So they studied the rumors in six hospitals and in fact an Albanian was 3 times more likely to have a healthy appendix taken out of them than a Greek citizen.  Three times more likely to undergo an operation that wasn’t needed!  It was reported in an article called “Lies, Damned Lies and Medical Science.”  What would a “lies, damned lies and policing” look like?

It has been said that 92% of statistics are made up on the spot.  Sound a little high, maybe it is more like 76% of statistic are made up on the spot.  Actually, I have seen from 26% to 92% when talking about what is made up on the spot – sort of evidence that the premise is true whatever the number is.  So let me just point to four ways statistics can lie to you by looking at some of the myths of policing. Read the rest of this entry »

Police Psychology | Morale

by Gary S. Aumiller, Ph.D.  ABPP


My very first job and first elected office, I was voted president of the Mighty Mouse Club by the kids in my neighborhood.  Mighty Mouse was a cartoon mighty-mousesuper hero mouse character that beat up cats in the 40’s 50’s and early 60’s.  The club members talked behind my back and all got a penny from their parents and each gave me a penny for my being the president.  I was so honored.  They didn’t tell me I was going to be paid!  I remember I was about kindergarten age at the time.  I remember I snuck to the ice cream truck when it came by later in the day, and I spent that seven cents on seven ice cream cones and gave one to each of the seven kids in the club.  I remember I didn’t order one for myself because I didn’t think I had enough money, but the ice cream man gave me one anyway.  (When I look back, my mother probably really paid for the cones, she had to watch while I went into the street).  I thought I was doing something that made all the kids happy.  I remember a girl named Margery, who lived two doors down from me, saying before we left that day that it was the best club in the whole world.

I had a conversation this week with an officer from a Midwest state who called me out of the blue.  He said he was a reader and that he wanted to get it across to his superiors that morale was very low and the trainings they are having don’t seem to address this issue or things that were important to the officers.  He said there has been a little bit of research in their department that showed that job satisfaction was in the low 20 percentiles and that was a major issue.  It was heart wrenching to have a guy say that 80 percent of his department isn’t crazy about their job anymore, a job many of them probably dreamed of taking.  He asked me how do I get a training on something that really mattered to his officers doing the job.

I personally have seen low morale across the country lately and want to spend a couple of paragraphs to address this issue. Read the rest of this entry »

Police Psychology | Inertia:  Video Post

by Gary S. Aumiller, Ph.D.  ABPP

A principle of motion in Physics that can be applied to police work in a psychological way


Police Psychology | Honesty:  An Endangered Species

by Gary S. Aumiller, Ph.D.  ABPP


I was at a party this Labor Day weekend and I talked to a New York Port Authority Police Officer who was originally from Peru.  His mom had cancer beetleand I felt real bad for him.  She was only given a few weeks to live, then he said that was 4 ½ years ago.  When she was diagnosed, he went down to Peru and purchased a bunch of cancer eating beetles, bringing them back into the United States in an ant farm type of arrangement.  The beetles have to be swallowed whole and alive, but seem to release some kind of toxin that kills cancer cells.  The beetles were used in many different ancient medicines.  The toxin actually burns you while going down and in the stomach.  He said at first week you eat 10 beetles a day, and it increases to 80 beetles a day before it comes back to rest at 10.  He said he didn’t know if it worked because they changed her diet and a whole bunch of things she was doing, but he said whether it is real or a placebo effect it definitely worked for his mother.  I looked it up on the internet, and in fact there is a lot about it, even some studies.  Seems it is only the male beetle that releases a toxin, it does offer a legit treatment for skin cancer, but the mythology is that it works with all cancers, sometimes.  Whoa, 80 burning beetles!  Alive!  And let’s say 40 are female, so you are  eating 40 that you don’t even have to!

My friend’s wife has cancer and they are not too positive about the prognosis.  He changed the diet, she starting radiation and such, but he was considering cannabis oil as a treatment.  When distilled in a certain way it has some studies that show it is marijuanaeffective, and there are articles on both sides of the effectiveness issue.  It has also been used in ancient medicines.  But of course, it is illegal except in California, and you can’t cross state lines to bring it back to New York.  So we devised some ways to get it back and try it if needed.  Not approved by the government for treatment, yet it sure sounds more pleasant than burning beetles from South America.  Unfortunately, you are supposed to take the oil in suppositories, so you might get a “high” in the wrong end.  When in desperation, you look for anything to cure the problem, but underlying this is a lack of trust in our government to regulate these types of things.  A lack of trust in medicine also.  Why is it we don’t trust medicine and the government to regulate these things anymore?  Shouldn’t we do something about this problem? Read the rest of this entry »