In some serious threat cases, a Clinical Psychologist should be called in to evaluate the
seriousness of a current or impending threat at the time of the exit interview. This involves a
psychologist experienced in workplace violence & trauma threats, and preferably with hostage
These evaluations are needed only for certain types of situation, not for all threat cases. In particular cases where the employee is exhibiting symptoms of mental illness and may harm themselves or others imminently.
In such cases the psychologist will make an evaluation of the person’s current propensity for violence; if serious enough, an involuntary psychiatric evaluation can be made; this requires the recommendation of a health professional to the local police who can initiate an arrest based on a medical evaluation.
Often an employee, who may be on prescription medications for personality and other disorders, may be off their normal medications (either because they chose to or under medical supervision) that allow the person to function well when the medications are taken regularly. As their behavior degrades, they begin acting out in ways that may be considered hostile, intimidating or threatening to most people. It is important to note that in cases like this, the subject may not be thinking normally or rationally and the actions that they would normally take are not feasible for the person. This requires experienced medical psychological evaluation by a licensed practicing professional or admittance to a hospital for psychiatric medical evaluation.
Again, this is only a limited summary of points to consider which may help to prevent or diffuse some cases of workplace violence and should not be considered legal advice. Professional threat risk assessment are extremely important in these types of cases.