Conspiracy Theories and Violence: What Threat Assessors Should Know

Philip Saragoza, M.D. & Stephen White, Ph.D.Spring, 2021 In this feature, we discuss the challenge of identifying conspiracy theorists who pose a risk of violence – a topic we will address in our upcoming workshop, Violent Extremism, 2021: A Threat Assessment Update, May 10-13. On Christmas day, 2020, in downtown Nashville, Tennessee, lone actor Anthony Warner detonated a bomb from …

Honor, Violence, and Threat Assessment: A Brief Note

“If honor enables us to ‘make the best of our own lives’, the continual experience of dishonor makes it impossible to live well.”
Amy Shuffleton
Does the concept of honor have utility for threat assessors? I have found the views of some contemporary philosophers and sociologists to be complementary to a psychological perspective on violent motives, both validating and broadly enriching violence risk criteria.

Explaining the Threat Assessment Process to the Campus Community

Stephen White, Ph.D.Summer, 2019 With the recent and horrific mass murders this summer, the message in this feature is as relevant as ever. Campus and workplace threat assessment teams are going to see an increase in reporting of concerns about violence. Explanations of how response protocols actually work will benefit an organization’s program. How can campus threat assessment teams better …

“How Do We Manage the Fear?”

Threat assessment team members in organizational settings increasingly raise this question. Mature programs promote a “see something, say something” culture. We want people to report situations of concern and they do, increasingly so. Denial of potential risk (“Oh, that’s just Charlie being Charlie.”) is less often the problem in this day and age. We all are vigilant to identify and actively manage the serious cases, but in these settings the vast majority of reported scenarios involve individuals who, in the ultimate opinion of the team (or their assessment experts), are judged to not pose a risk of harm…

Regional Multi-Agency Networks Reduce School Shootings

Stephen White, Ph.D. Winter 2018 Newsletter The Parkland, Florida school shooting has generated a new wave of outrage, controversy, and hopefully some encouraging movement. If you find this feature informative, please share it with your own school districts and law enforcement agencies where you live. As a threat assessment professional, I find the media and public focus in the aftermath …

Is Workplace or Campus Violence Reactive Anger or Deliberate Planning?: Revisiting a Recurrent Question

Threat assessment and management, the guiding method for the development of the WAVR-21 (Workplace Assessment of Violence Risk), focuses upon targeted violence. It is violent behavior that is planned in advance, and directed against a specific target, usually following a pathway. We read about such violence every day through the commercial media, but the history of this mode of violence is quite interesting, and has direct relevance for corporate and educational settings.