Amber McKinley

Academic Staff

Associate Professor Amber C McKinley

PhD, MCJ, B.LibS

Associate Professor

Associate Professor Amber McKinley (BLibS, MCJ, PhD) is a Clinical and Forensic Victimologist and an Associate Professor at Charles Sturt University’s  Australian Graduate School of Policing and Security (AGSPS), based in Barton, ACT.

Associate Professor McKinley coordinates and lectures JST345 - Theoretical, Applied and Forensic Victimology and CUS532 - Human trafficking: A global perspective.

She holds a Bachelor of Liberal Studies from the University of Western Sydney, a Master of Criminal Justice from Monash University and a Doctor of Philosophy from Bond University. Her doctoral thesis was completed with the NSW Police Force and entitled, “Homicide Solvability and Applied Victimology in New South Wales, 1994-2013”. She is currently learning Welsh to use as a Visiting Fellow in the University of South Wales.

Her current research includes: the history of Australian familicide from 1816 – 2021; victims of serial homicide in Australia from 1806-2021; homicide solvability; the decline in homicide rates in Australia; vicarious trauma for first responders; interpersonal crimes in the Australian Defence Force and finally, a study of thanatology and suicide for the Australian Defence Force.

Amber works with the Australian Defence Force, Joint Military Police Unit where she researches and writes reports on sexual offences and sudden death for the Provost Marshal-ADF. She also lectures at the Defence Force School of Policing, for the Australian Federal Police and other government agencies.


Dr. McKinley has recently re-written JST345 - Theoretical, Applied and Forensic Victimology and newly created CUS532 - Human trafficking: A global perspective. She has utilised contemporary theory, and recent case studies to enhance the student understanding and experience of the subjects. She has also introduced scaffolded assessments in line with the current AQF standards and utilises Coroners Reports and Case Law to prove valuable statements made within the Modules.


Current research, 2020 – 2023 is confidential for Government and contains information whereby if it was disclosed would likely, unreasonably expose the agencies to disadvantage due to operational methodology, trade craft and sensitive personal information.

Recent published research includes ‘Temporal Aspect of Adult Homicide in Australia 1989-2015’ and ‘Police interaction with vulnerable people: A thematic exploration’. SALUS.

Research to be released in 2022 include ‘Victim vulnerabilities of Serial Homicide’; The history of Australian familicide (1816-2022) and Unsolved Serial Homicide in Australia (1965 – 2022).

Professional Memberships

  • American Investigative Society of Cold Cases
  • American Society of Criminology
  • Asian Criminological Society
  • Association for Death Education and Counselling
  • Australian and New Zealand Society of Criminology
  • British Society of Criminology
  • Forensic Social Science Association
  • Homicide Research Working Group
  • International homicide investigators association
  • Royal United Services Institute
  • South Asian Society of Criminology and Victimology
  • World Society of Victimology