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School Shooter: A Threat Assessment Perspective

NCJ Number
Mary E. O'Toole Ph.D.
Date Published
52 pages
A model procedure is presented for threat assessment and intervention to combat violence in schools that includes a chapter on key indicators to be regarded as warning signs in evaluating threats.
The model procedure is designed to be used by educators, mental health professionals, and law enforcement agencies. The model procedure emerged from concepts and principles developed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation's National Center for the Analysis of Violent Crime (NCAVC) in nearly 25 years of experience in threat assessment, ideas generated at a 1999 NCAVC symposium on school shootings, and an in-depth review of 18 school shooting cases. The model procedure is based on a four-pronged assessment approach that considers student personality, family dynamics, school dynamics, and social dynamics. Violence is viewed as a complex issue with complex causes and consequences. The model procedure for threat assessment and intervention will help school authorities identify and deal with high-risk threats of major concern and respond to less serious threats in a measured way. Appendixes provide additional information and resources related to threat assessment in schools. 37 references