Active Shooter: Preparing for and Responding to a Growing Threat
Active Shooter - Preparing for and Responding to a Growing Threat
Author(s) Kevin T. Doss
Charles David Shepherd
Published 2015
Publisher Butterworth-Heinemann
Country United Kingdom
Pages 304
ISBN 9780128027844

Active Shooter: Preparing for and Responding to a Growing Threat is a book by Kevin T. Doss and Charles David Shepherd, published by Butterworth-Heinemann, Oxford in 2015.


According to Pinkerton―the leading provider of risk management services in the world―workplace violence is second only to cybersecurity as the top threat faced by organizations today. Incidents involving active shooters in the workplace are on the rise and becoming more violent and deadly. Active Shooter provides the tools necessary to identify potential violent individuals, along with the options and responses needed to save lives, reduce corporate liability, and recover from an active shooter event should it happen.

Active Shooter begins with a brief history of active shooters and how they have changed over time. It shows why many perpetrators initiate attacks, what they often are thinking, and some of the indicators that could have been identified prior to the attack. The book shows how to develop an active shooter program in an organization, walking readers through the entire process including training exercises to test the efficiency of the program. With the uniquely private security perspective, Active Shooter illustrates how to communicate with law enforcement, government agencies, and the media in the event of active shooter incident. The book concludes with a discussion of how organizations can recover promptly after an incident, which is crucial for operational survival.

  • Illustrates what businesses should consider prior to, during, and after an active shooting event, including developing business continuity plan
  • Demonstrates the importance of preparedness, an effective coordinated response, and planning all the way down to the frontline employee
  • Addresses the private sector and public sector coordination efforts needed for an effective active shooter program
  • Offers teaching and learning tools such as text boxes, end-of-chapter discussion questions, lists of key DHS, FBI and FEMA websites and resources, as well as training exercises and case studies

Table of contentsEdit

Chapter Page
About the Authors xi
Introduction xiii
1. Active Shooter and Workplace Violence History 1
Introduction 1
Historical Overview 2
Active Shooter Definition 7
Complexity of Violence 9
Prevention 10
Workplace Violence 11
Four Levels of Violence in the Workplace 15
Costs to the Organization 16
References 18
2. Motivations and Triggers 21
Profiling or Behavioral Profiling 22
What are They Thinking? 23
Classifications 32
Indicators 35
Triggers 37
References 39
3. Effective Planning 41
Emergency Action Plannning 42
Response and Recovery Planning 43
Business Continuity Planning 44
Planning Stages 45
Active Shooter Planning 51
References 54
4. First Responders and the Private Sector 55
Roles, Responsibilites and Action 55
Requirements and Assistance 57
Gaps and Challenges 59
Insider Threat 63
Before, During, and After 65
Effective Coordination 70
Security Surveillance and Control Room 70
Emergency Command Center or Emergency Operations Center 70
Emergency Evacuation Assembly Area 71
References 75
5. Coordinated Response, Expectations and Goals 77
Who Will Arrive? 77
When Will First Responders Arrive? 79
First Responders 81
Response 82
Expectations 85
Employee Actions 87
Business Actions 92
Goals 100
References 100
6. Internal and External Communications 101
Systems and Platforms 101
Platforms of Communication 102
Social Media 104
Alarm, Employee Notification, Verbal Warning, or Observation 105
Messages During an Active Shooting 106
Content of Warning Messages 109
Internal and External Communication 113
Persons Who Have a Disability 116
Signage 119
International Guests 120
Communication Gaps 121
Communications After 122
Intern Self-Assessment Process During and After an Active Shooting 122
References 123
7. Human Resources 125
Human Resources 125
Internal Threats 127
Considerations 130
Standards of Behavior 132
Discrimination 135
Workers' Rights 136
Pre-employment Screening 137
Procedures and Process 138
Zero Tolerance 140
References 141
8. Preparedness 143
Roles and Responsibilities 144
Preventive Measures 146
Identification of Gaps 151
Budgeting 162
References 163
9. Training, Awareness, Education and Exercise 165
Training 165
Awareness and Situational Awareness 169
Challenges 171
Education 175
Exrcise 177
Process 179
References 180
10. Recovery 181
Most Valuable Asset 181
Effects of Decisions 182
Business Differences 184
Business Decision and Choice 185
Active Shooter Plan 186
Business Continuity Plan 189
Command Center 190
Notification Structure 192
Emergency Evacuation Assembly Area 192
Damage Assessment 193
Restoration Overview 196
Reunification 197
Three Sectors of Recovery 197
Three Phases of Recovery 198
Checklist Process 203
References 207
Appendix A: Types and Classifications of Murderers 209
Appendix B: Psychological Characteristics of Murderers 215
Appendix C: Recovery From an Active Shooting Event 223
Appendix D: Active Shooter and Workplace Violence Training Exercise 261
Appendix E: Case Studies 281
Index 291

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