UNC Police: General Order 04-04R3 - Threat Assessment


UNC Police: General Order 04-04R3 - Threat Assessment

Document Information

Document Information Table
Subject Threat Assessment
Date September 11, 2020
Number 04-04R3
Amends April 7, 2017
Supersedes 04-04R2
Approved by Brian L. James, Chief of Police
CALEA Standards 91.1. Behavioral Threat Assessment
CALEA Communications Standard 6.2.3 Immediately Available Procedures & 6.2.7 Procedures for Handling Difficult Callers


The purpose of this general order (G.O) is to establish guidelines for members of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC-CH) Community to assess and report threats. Proper evaluation of threats is essential to provide a safe environment for the UNC-CH Community.


The UNC-CH Police Department supports the University’s core mission of teaching, research, and public service by developing partnerships that encourage problem solving and communication to identify and address public safety needs with professionalism and integrity.

When members of the UNC-CH Community are threatened by individuals or groups (including cyber threats via text, email, or social media), the threatened member(s) of UNC-CH Community or Third Party individuals who are aware of the threat have an obligation to immediately report the threat to the UNC-CH Police Department. The UNC-CH Police Department must initiate a Threat Assessment to evaluate the scope of the threat and determine the proper allocation of resources necessary to mitigate the threat.

The UNC-CH Police Department works closely with standing university committees representing the UNC-CH Dean of Students (DOS), UNC-CH Student Affairs, and UNC-CH Office of Human Resources (OHR). These committees have been established to evaluate threats, or potential threats, involving either University Employees or University Students in the UNC-CH Community.

Units Affected

UNC-CH Police Department Sworn Personnel.


  • Federal Occupational Safety and Human Act of 1970
  • North Carolina General Statute §14-118.4 Extortion
  • North Carolina General Statute §14-190.13 Sexual Exploitation of a Minor
  • North Carolina General Statute §14-196 Harassing Telephone Calls
  • North Carolina General Statute §14-196.3 Cyberstalking
  • North Carolina General Statute §14-196.3(b)(1) Using Electronic Mail or Communication to Threaten or Extort
  • North Carolina General Statute §14-277.1 Communicating Threats
  • North Carolina General Statute §14-277.3A Stalking
  • North Carolina General Statute §14-277.5 Making a False Report Concerning Mass Violence on Educational Property
  • North Carolina General Statute §14-458.1. Cyberbullying
  • North Carolina General Statue §50B-4.1 Violation of Domestic Violence Protection Order
  • North Carolina Information Sharing and Analysis Center (NCISAAC)
  • Section 304 of 2013 Amendments to the Violence Against Women’s Act
  • State of North Carolina State Human Resources Manual Workplace Violence Policy
  • The Behavioral Threat Assessment Units College & University Resource Guidebook by the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigations (NCSBI),
  • UNC-CH Dean of Students Care Referral Form
  • UNC-CH Dean of Students Crisis Incident Response Team
  • UNC-CH Emergency Evaluation and Action Committee Policy and Procedures
  • UNC-CH Instrument of Student Judicial Governance
  • UNC-CH Office of Human Resources Workplace Violence Policy
  • UNC-CH Office of Human Resources Threat Assessment and Response Team
  • UNC-CH Office of Human Resources: Quick Reference on Reporting Workplace Violence
  • UNC-CH Office of Human Resources Workplace Violence and Reporting Form
  • UNC-CH Police Department General Order 03-25 Staff Duty Officer
  • UNC-CH Police Department General Order 04-01 Patrol Operations
  • UNC-CH Police Department General Order 04-06 Missing Persons
  • UNC-CH Police Department General Order 06-03 Body Worn Camera
  • UNC-CH Police Department General Order 08-03 Assignment and Documentation of Criminal Investigations
  • UNC-CH Police Department General Order 08-04 Criminal Intelligence
  • UNC-CH Police Department General Order 12-02 Field Reporting and Management
  • UNC-CH Policy on Prohibited Discrimination, Harassment and Related Misconduct Including Sexual and Gender Based Harassment, Sexual Violence, Interpersonal Violence and Stalking
  • UNC-CH Policy on Protection of Minors
  • UNC-CH Policy on Reporting and Responding to Complaints of Discrimination, Harassment, and Related Misconduct Involving a Visitor, Program, Participant, Contractor, or Other Third Party as the Reporting Party

Definitions and Descriptions

AOC: North Carolina Administrative Office of the Courts.

BOLO: Be on the look-out.

CID: UNC-CH Police Department Criminal Investigations Division.

Community: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

DCI: Division of Criminal Information.

DMV: North Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles.

DOS: Dean of Students.

Imminent: An event that is about to occur at any moment.

Mobile Communications Device: Any electronic communication device and/or Service Plan attached including but not limited to: cellular phone; voice/text messaging; cellular phone; ISP; data service associated with devices such as smart phones and PDA’s; and cellular wireless modems associated with devices such as laptop computers, hotspots, air cards, and jetpacks.

OHR: Office of Human Resources.

Third Party: An individual who is not considered a University Employee or University Student. Reports of misconduct by a Third Party will be addressed by the procedures that correlate to the responding parties' relationship to the University.

Threat Assessment: An evaluation of person(s) or group(s) who willfully threaten to physically injure a person or group or threaten to damage the property of another and/or threatening behavior that may adversely affect the UNC-CH Community or the University's pursuit of its mission, policies or procedures. The Threat Assessment provides direction for legal and staffing resources.

University Employee: Any faculty or staff member, including EHRA non-faculty employees, SHRA employees, and University Student employees, whether part-time or full-time, permanent or temporary, and includes post-doctoral scholars.

University Student: A person who is enrolled in or has accepted admission to a full or part-time course of study for academic credit at the University.


I. Preliminary Threat Assessment

  1. When a member of the UNC-CH Community reports a threat or discerning behavior to the UNC-CH Police Department, this may serve as a warning sign or indicator that someone is at risk of harming themselves or others. Information is often obtained when UNC-CH police officers respond to a request for service through a Third Party and even off the internet. An incident report is generated to document the incident in our Records Management System (RMS). An investigator or the intelligence officer is assigned to conduct follow-up on the incident report, unless it’s a case solely a case of self-harm, which are investigated by the officer who responded to the call. Investigations would follow up on cases of self-harm based on extenuating circumstances.
  2. The officer determines if any laws have been violated which the offender could be arrested, including, but not limited to, the following:
    1. Communicating threats;
      1. Includes those received from an electronic device such as a tablet or computer, Mobile Communications Device, and web-based social media platforms.
    2. Harassing phone calls;
    3. Violation of a domestic violence protection order;
    4. Sending threatening letters or emails;
    5. False police or bomb reports;
    6. Exploitation; or
    7. Extortion.
  3. The officer gathers as much information as possible on the discerning behavior that is involved in the current incident.
  4. The officer conducts a preliminary investigation when a Third Party reports threats directed to an individual(s) or group(s). The officer attempts contact with the victim(s) to inform them of the threat(s) and obtains further information concerning the suspect(s) or person(s) of interest.
  5. Based on the officer's findings, there are several outcomes, including, but not limited to, the following:
    1. UNC-CH Police officer completes an incident report.
    2. Verifies threats with no immediate threat to victim due to logistical barriers such as geographical distance or it is a threat from an incarcerated offender. Appropriate legal action is taken if victim wishes to press charges. This information is reviewed by the Criminal Investigations Division (CID).
    3. Verifies threats with concerns that the threats could be carried out at any time; appropriate legal action taken if the victim wishes to press charges.
    4. Immediately notifies the appropriate campus resources of any University Employee or University Student that comes to the attention of the UNC-CH Police Department who demonstrates that they are at risk physically or emotionally or may be a risk to others.
    5. Promptly notifies a police supervisor to ensure that they have the information to make the appropriate notifications about any threatening behavior that may pose immediate or Imminent threats inside or outside the UNC-CH Community.

II. Duty of the Police Supervisor

  1. Responds to and oversees the preliminary investigation of a threat that may pose an immediate or Imminent harm reported through UNC-CH Police Department Communications.
  2. Notify CID, staff duty officer, and any other UNC-CH departments that require notification.

III. CID Threat Assessment

  1. When contacted to conduct a Threat Assessment, the investigator attempts to gather and review the following data:
    1. Reviews incident report(s) and interviews reporting officer(s).
    2. Conducts In-depth interview(s) with victim(s) and any witness(es).
    3. Obtains photograph(s) and current physical description of the person(s) of interest, their vehicle(s), and residence(s).
    4. Obtains and review records from the Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC), NC Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), Division of Criminal Information (DCI), and National Crime Information Center (NCIC) on the person(s) of interest, to assist with gathering information about the individual.
    5. Interviews law enforcement officers and other professionals who have dealt with the person(s) of interest in the past.
    6. Contacts the UNC-CH OHR or the UNC-CH DOS to inform them of the threat(s) and to see if the victim and/or offender are known to them from prior contacts.
    7. Determines location and types of weapons available to the person(s) of interest and if the person(s) of interest has the logistical support to carry out the threats.
  2. Based on information gathered, the investigator initiates one or more of the following actions:
    1. Briefs patrol, providing a confidential BOLO with a photograph(s) of the person(s) of interest and any outstanding warrant data;
    2. Requests for close patrols of defined target area, with data on victim(s), suspect(s) or person(s) of interest’s vehicle(s) information.
    3. In cases of Imminent danger, the UNC-CH Police Department could take the following actions as appropriate:
      1. Provides for immediate protection of victim(s) by a uniformed or plain-clothes officer(s).
      2. Briefs command staff on Threat Assessment findings.
      3. Considers the possibility that the University Employee or University Student victim should be placed on administrative or academic leave, until the threat can be resolved or minimized. Coordinates with the DOS or OHR.
      4. Requests additional resources to provide security for the victim and the defined target area. Resources could include additional staffing and/or outside agency alerts and cooperation.
      5. Identifies legal remedies concerning the suspect or person(s) of interest.
      6. Determines if there is a need to notify others in the areas that the victim most frequents.
      7. Has briefings with the command staff on a regular basis until threat(s) are resolved or minimized.
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Article ID: 132114
Thu 4/8/21 9:24 PM
Fri 10/6/23 4:33 PM
Responsible Unit
School, Department, or other organizational unit issuing this document.
UNC Police
Issuing Officer
Name of the document Issuing Officer. This is the individual whose organizational authority covers the policy scope and who is primarily responsible for the policy.
Issuing Officer Title
Title of the person who is primarily responsible for issuing this policy.
Chief of Police
Next Review
Date on which the next document review is due.
11/01/2024 12:00 AM
Last Review
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08/04/2023 12:00 AM
Last Revised
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09/11/2020 12:00 AM
Effective Date
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09/11/2020 12:00 AM
Date on which the original version of this document was first made official.
04/07/2017 12:00 AM