Ritualistic Crimes and Terrorism Related Courses
by Phil Sanfilippo, Director, TRITECHFORENSICS Training
(Updated 1/7/14: Read Dawn Perlmutter’s latest article -
Benghazi – The Signs of Al Qaeda. Links updated below.)
You never know who you’ll meet at the International Association for Identification (IAI) Annual Educational Conference. When I attended the IAI conference that was being held in my hometown of Miami in 2001, I met a young lady named Dawn Perlmutter. At that time, Dr. Perlmutter was a professor in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education. Her area of expertise was and continues to be religions, religious beliefs, and rituals. Dr. Perlmutter was at the conference to present lectures on Ritualistic Crimes. I quickly learned that I was not alone in my interest of this topic; she has consistently lectured to standing-room-only crowds at the conferences where she appears.
If you attended courses at the Miami-Dade Police Department in the past, you might recall that Dr. Perlmutter instructed the Ritualistic Crimes courses and led the students on the accompanying “Magical Mystery Tours,” where we toured Santeria, Palo Myombe, Voodoo botanicas, and Wicca and fetish shops. Interesting material indeed!
Dr. Perlmutter continues her research into ritualistic
crimes and violent extremist religious groups. She has also established a clearinghouse for symbols used by these groups, and she continues to write books and articles that outline these groups’ beliefs, methods, and symbols. Her most recent articles are useful to those interested in learning if these groups are engaged in activity in their localities.
In addition to her research and writings, Dr. Perlmutter continues to offer stand-alone courses of instruction on ritualistic crimes and terrorism. I’m happy to announce that through a special agreement with Dr. Perlmutter, her lectures and courses are now available through
In addition, here are links to some of Dr. Perlmutter’s recent articles:
NEW ARTICLE! Benghazi – The Signs of Al Qaeda, Front Page Magazine, January 2, 2014: http://www.frontpagemag.com/2014/dawn-perlmutter/benghazi-the-signs-of-al-qaeda/
Jihadist Murder M.O., Front Page Magazine, December 6, 2013: http://www.frontpagemag.com/2013/dawn-perlmutter/jihadist-murder-mo/
Jihadist Ritual Murder and Mutilation at the Mall, Front Page Magazine, October 1, 2013: http://www.frontpagemag.com/2013/dawn-perlmutter/jihadist-ritual-murder-mutilation-at-the-mall/
Prelude to the Boston Bombings, The Middle East Quarterly, Fall 2013,Volume XX, Number 4: http://www.meforum.org/3618/boston-bombings-prelude
The articles linked below were written ten or more years ago but have not lost their relevance for those interested in the investigation of individuals who practice occult ideologies.
The Sacrificial Aesthetic: Blood Rituals from Art to Murder, Anthropoetics 5, Number 2, Fall 1999 / Winter 2000: http://www.anthropoetics.ucla.edu/ap0502/blood.htm
The Forensics of Sacrifice: A Symbolic Analysis of Ritualistic Crime, Anthropoetics 9, Number 2, Fall 2003 / Winter 2004: http://www.anthropoetics.ucla.edu/ap0902/sacrifice.htm
This article was written in 1999 but again has not lost its relevance. As a matter of fact, with the seemingly unending reports of violence at schools, one might say this article is timely.
Postmodern Iconoclasm: Violence in the Schoolyard, Colloquium On Violence & Religion 1999, religion.emory.edu Website: http://www.religion.emory.edu/affiliate/COVR/perlmutter.html