Threat Assessment Teams & Gang Stalking
A closer look
Many Targeted Individuals wonder how they could be placed on a list in the first place? Who has the power or the authority to do such a thing? If you live in a country such as the U.K. your local councils have this ability as displayed in the Jane Clift case. If you live in the U.S. or Canada it might be the task of what’s called a threat assessment team.
This team can be comprised of just a few individuals, to a team of many individuals. It depends on the company, educational facility, or community they are representing and what the specific needs are.
Some examples include members of Human Resource, Police Officers, Psychiatrists, Mental Health Professionals, Senior members of the department or division. In some cases there might be just a small team, who then liaison with various other departments. The team members are pre selected, so the team is already in place. The team should generally be trained in assessing workplace violence, violence on campus, what to do, who to call, and they might also be trained in profiling an individual, to enable them to make an assessment of wither an individual is a threat vs a none threat to the environment around them.
The threat assessment teams and who they are comprised of seem to make no concessions or allowances for being evaluated by a team of peers. Eg. In court cases they try to encourage a variety of jurors, so that a person being judged can be evaluated by a peer of their jurors. This in theory allows for fairer trials and outcomes. With the threat assessment teams there are no such guidelines for who the team is comprised of, or what the make up of the team should be. This may or may not account for why the Targeted Individual community has seen an above average targeting of females and minorities. In addition dissenters such as whistle-blowers, extremist site members, and conspiracy site members are also starting to show up above average.
Once in place the team is ready to take tips from the community around them. Generally the team will liaison with Human Resources, The police, Employee Assistance Program, Mental health, and when a report comes in they use these other resources to assist with their assessment of the Target.
Reports can be filed via a form, the reports can be filed anonymously. This means that the person making the accusation need not have any accountability for making a false report. This might not be the case in every area, but in most of the threat assessment guidelines I came across, reports could be filed anonymously. Keep in mind that report are likely primarily initiated by human resources, campus resources, etc. However anonymous reporting of any kind leaves an organization open to abuses of the system that might be difficult to identify or remedy.http://www.threatassessment.vt.edu/FAQ/ ... ml#CareTAThttp://rems.ed.gov/docs/EMHETraining_SA ... tTeams.pdf
The threat assessment team works in a four part process.
1. Identify persons of concern
2. Gather information/investigate
3. Assess information and situation
4. Manage the situation
Identification of person of concern
Once a target is chosen, or a concern is forwarded to the threat assessment team it’s time for them to liaison and start to profile and assess if that target is a concern for further evaluation or monitoring, or if the case can be closed.http://www.nalc.org/depart/cau/pdf/manuals/pub108.pdf
This threat assessment guide from the post office is interesting. Here are some of the criterias it uses to assess if a target could be a threat.
Obsessive focus on grudge — often quick to perceive unfairness or malice in others, especially supervisor.
Especially for males, great concerns or emphasis on sexual fidelity of mate.
Recent stressful events or severe losses.
Perceived loss of options.
Direct or veiled threats of bodily harm toward supervisory personnel, coworkers, or customers.
Physical deterioration (head injuries, cancer, disability, kidney failure, etc.).
Extreme sense of moral righteousness about things in general as well as believing that the organization does not follow its own policy and procedures.
Inability to handle constructive criticism well and projecting blame on others.
Demonstrated disregard for safety or coworkers.
Tendency to be a loner with little family or social support and often having an excessive investment in the job.
Another University uses these criteria for their threat assessment and fit for duty guidelines.http://www.vpfa.fsu.edu/Employee-Assist ... e-Violence
A. Expression of bizarre and inappropriate thoughts. B. Excessive absenteeism without prior approval or rationale. C. Degenerating physical appearance. D. Acts of insubordination. E. Poor work performance. F. Poor workplace relationships with others. G. Indications of alcohol/substance abuse. H. Excessive complaining.
Once an assessment is initiated information is gathered on the Target in question.
Gathering of information and Investigating
To gather information on the target, these threat assessment teams use a variety of sources. They use the persons friends, family, social networking circles, co-workers, neighbours, and other resources.
Triage questions can include:
• Has there been indications of suicidal thoughts,
plans, or attempts?
• Has there been indications of thoughts/plans of
• Does the person have access to a weapon or are
they trying to gain access?
• Are there concerns about the well-being of the
• Are there concerns about the safety of the
• If yes, a full inquiry is recommended.
Gather Information (Full Inquiry)
• Think broadly and creatively about those who
might have information:
• Other staff
• Online friends, web sites, etc.
• Previous schools / employers
• Document information and use it to answer the
Key Investigative Questions.
Many Targeted Individuals express concerns often that their families, friends, people online, others are playing a role in their monitoring, or are taking part. That they are somehow in on it, well according to what this threat evaluation guideline dictates, they are often in on it, and asked to be a part of the monitoring and evaluation process.
Need for Collaboration
“Most important, dangerous people rarely show all of
their symptoms to just one department or group on
campus. A professor may see a problem in an essay,
the campus police may endure belligerent
statements, a resident assistant may notice the
student is a loner, the counseling center may notice
that the student fails to appear for a follow-up visit.
Acting independently, no department is likely to solve
the problem. In short, colleges must recognize that
managing an educational environment is a team
effort, calling for collaboration and multilateral
They use a variety of sources in the targets environment, but because reports do come in remotely, there is cause for error, or even false reporting of events. These reports are used to keep targets on monitoring for years to come.
Many people believe that the social networking sites that they use are harmless, but when it comes to being evaluated as to wither you are a threat to your social circle, you will see that these sites have now begun to play a critical and integral role in assisting these teams to make their initial assessments.
Helpful Internet sites include:
(search the relevant city/town)
If unaware of the guidelines being used to assess them, targets could well be entrapped or tricked into making suggestive statements. Also once those around the target perceive that the target is under investigation, normal everyday behaviours that would have been brushed aside, become significant, and everything the target does is cause for alarm.
2. Have there been any communications
suggesting ideas or intent to attack?
• What, if anything, has the person
communicated to someone else (targets,
friends, co-workers, others) or written in a
diary, journal, email, or Web site concerning
his or her grievances, ideas and/or intentions?
• Has anyone been alerted or “warned away”?
Source: U.S. Secret Service and U.S. Department of Education, (2002)
Guide to Managing Threatening Situations and Creating Safe School Climates.
Key Investigative Questions
The threat assessment team will also circumvent laws such as FERPA and HIPAA to get around laws that would usually prevent an invasion of the targets rights and privacy.
Information Sharing: FERPA
• FERPA is not an impediment to effective threat
assessment and case management.
• FERPA governs records only, not observations,
• FERPA does not govern police records.
• If created & maintained by law enforcement, for
law enforcement purpose.
• New guidance from ED encourages information
sharing where public safety is a concern.
• FERPA does not permit a private right of action.
Information Sharing: HIPAA
• Check with legal counsel as to which laws
govern counseling center records.
• Confidentiality is held by client, not MH provider.
• In cases where privacy laws apply, can try these
• No legal prohibition against providing
information to health/MH professionals.
• Inquire about Tarasoff – type duty.
• Ask subject for permission to disclose.
• Centralized incident tracking database;
• Document reports and actions – include date,
time, subjects, targets, behaviors of concern,
• Preserve evidence: Keep copies of email,
Incident tracking database;
• Incident Information:
• Date, location, nature of incident, means of approach;
• Subject information:
• Name, DOB, sex, description, affiliation, status, etc.
• Target / Victim Information;
• Name, DOB, sex, description, affiliation, status, etc.
• Witness/Reporting Party Information:
• Name, DOB, sex, description, affiliation, status, etc.
Assessing Information and Situation
Once all the reports are in from the eyes and ears around the target, then the assessing of information begins.
Think creatively about resources, as well as
“eyes and ears.”
• Anticipate likely change in the short and midterm,
and how the subject may react.
• Monitor using available resources. Who sees
the person regularly, inside work/campus,
outside, on weekends, online, etc.?
The threat assessment team use the information gathered together to determine if the target should be referred any third parties, this could include law enforcement, Employee Assistant Program, Mental Health Workers or others.
They evaluate if the person might be a danger to themselves or others, if the person is able to take care of themselves. Eg. Do they pay rent on time, do they buy groceries, are the suicidal, a threat to others, etc. If these criteria are not met, they might try to convince a judge or other health care worker that a mental health hold is required, or some other form of intervention.
Information is recorded and reported 24/7 and often stored in some form of centralized database. The records are crossed referenced with police and other contacts.
Now this procedure was in place well before the fusion centers ever came into existence, however it is not out of the question to assume that fusion centers might well be used in future or linked into this process, even if they were not initially used.
Once a Targeted is listed for monitoring, even if they move away from the university, place of employment, or community, if they are still perceived to be a threat to others the remote monitoring, or case management will continue.
While the case is open the team should:
• Continue to monitor and modify the plan as long as the individual still poses a threat
• Recognize that a person can continue to pose a threat even after he/she ceases to be a Closing a Case
member of the campus community
• Continue to monitor the situation through its relationship with local law enforcement agencies and mental health agencies, as well as in direct cooperation with the person, if possiblehttp://www.threatassessment.vt.edu/FAQ/ ... ml#CareTAT
The Target will be monitored as long as they are perceived as a threat. There is no current limit to how many years the state can continue this monitoring, imposition and disruption of the targets life.
If someone who has been reviewed by the Threat Assessment Team leaves the area, do you continue to monitor him/her?
If the situation warrants reviewing the case after the subject leaves the area, the team will continue to do so. It is important to remember that when the subject has relationships in his/her life, there is a lesser chance for violence to occur. A failure to communicate or interact with a subject encourages problems to fester, which could lead to violence.
Also under many of these occupational health and safety guidelines, the Targets information can and will be shared with those that they are likely to come in contact with.http://www.wcb.pe.ca/photos/original/wcb_wpviolence.pdf
“In the service sector this may require identifying to employees persons who have a history of aggressive or inappropriate behavior in the store, bar, mall or taxi.
The identity of the person and the nature of the risk must be given to staff likely to come into contact with that person. While workers have the right to know the risks, it is important to remember that this information cannot be indiscriminately distributed.
Remember as the case is being monitored, any incidents, perceived threats, strange behaviour, anything at all can be reported to this team for assessment and evaluation. If the team feels that a change in behaviour constitutes a threat the team might upgrade the targets to something along the lines of medium risk, danger to self or others, should only be seen in pairs.
Manage The Situation
The threat assessment team might also add specific quirks of the target to their files, things that the general public might be made aware of, such as if the target starts to pace it could be a sign of imminent attack.
Assessment: Case Priority Levels
PRIORITY 1 (Extreme Risk): Poses clear/immediate threat of violence or self-harm and requires immediate containment, law enforcement involvement, target protection, and case management plan.
PRIORITY 2 (High Risk): Poses threat of violence or self-harm but lacks immediacy or access to target. Requires active monitoring and case management plan.
PRIORITY 3 (Moderate Risk): Does not pose threat of violence or self harm, but exhibits significantly disruptive behaviors and/or need for assistance. Requires active monitoring, case management plan, and appropriate referrals.
PRIORITY 4 (Low Risk): Does not pose threat of violence or self-harm at this time, but may exhibit some disruptive behavior and/or need for assistance. Requires passive monitoring. Utilize case management and referrals as appropriate.
PRIORITY 5 (No Identified Risk): Does not pose threat of violence or self-harm nor is there evidence of disruption to community. No case management or monitoring required.
It can be clearly shown that monitoring is indeed a part of the guidelines that these threat assessment teams do follow.
Once the plan is developed, it needs to be
implemented and monitored.
• Team should include implementation and
monitoring responsibilities as part of the case
• Further referrals may be necessary.
• Team should continue to follow up as
What targets may wish to do in future is redirect F.O.I.A. (Freedom Of Information Act) requests to these agencies.
Targets may also wish to have their lawyers make a cease and desist request to these threat assessment teams in regards to the overly invasive monitoring that is allowed. In future Targeted Individuals might even be able to come together and aim class action lawsuits or individual, and human rights lawsuits at these teams. Slander suits and others might also be suitable.
What would also be nice is to gain some statistics on who is being monitored via these threat assessment teams. Which case files were closed, vs which are still open. How many years does the average case stay open for? Ages, genders, race, how many were whistle-blowers, or belonged to a dissident, extremist, conspiracy or protest group. How many cases ended in suicide? Incarceration? Institutionalization? Homelessness?
These might be things that future Targeted Individuals look into as they seek assistance in stopping the monitoring, surveillance, and life disruptions, and curtailling the abuses that are being experienced under these programs.
With these threat assessment teams it’s extremely important to realize that if the threat assessment team is composed of one group, and they are assigned to make a threat assessment of another group or individual, you might not have fair and balanced assessments, because these teams than do not take into considerations cultural norms, gender, racial, sexual, or other biases that might be present, or underlying within the assessment team. The assessment team is essentially playing judge, jury, and executioner with their assessments of these individuals, thus if courts are required in many cases to use a fair and balanced jury of peers, should Threat Assessment Teams be morally or legally required to do the same in future?