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Archive for August, 2010|Monthly archive page

Psychologist Christine E. Frydenborg suspended for three years

In psychologist on August 23, 2010 at 6:52 pm

On October 16, 2009, the State of New Hampshire Board of Mental Health Practice (“Board”) suspended psychologist Christine E. Frydenborg’s (aka Christine F. Dargon) license for not less than three years for engaging in multiple relationships.

In August 2007, the Board received a complaint from a former patient of Frydenborg’s, alleging that she developed multiple relationships with the patient and her family involving participation in Frydenborg’s theatre company and other social relationships which later deteriorated.  The patient claimed that these multiple relationships caused emotional harm to the family and the loss of the beneficial aspects of the therapeutic relationship.

Frydenborg began treating the patient in November 2006 and further began a treatment relationship with the patient’s husband and one of her three children.  Frydenborg encouraged the daughter to become involved in a community theatre group to boost her self-confidence.  The patient and her family became involved in two theatre productions that Frydenborg produced, directed and acted in.

The patient invited Frydenborg to one child’s birthday party, which Frydenborg attended briefly.  Further, the patient and her husband installed a new floor in Frydenborg’s in-home office and helped move her office into the in-home office.  The patient and her husband refused monetary payment for the services but did accept payment in the form of a one-week stay in Frydenborg’s time-share in the Berkshires on the condition that Frydenborg joined them.  She agreed and vacationed with them in a neighboring unit during the same one-week period.

Frydenborg failed to maintain accurate treatment and billing records for each family member and the services provided for each and further failed to provide a complete copy of the patient’s treatment record to an outside agency that requested the copy to determine the patient’s eligibility for the agency’s benefits.

Frydenborg failed to appropriately seek professional assistance to address her concerns relating to resolving the boundary transgressions with the patient and her family and failed to appropriately terminate her treating the patient and family members.

Source: Settlement Agreement in the Matter of Christine Frydenborg, Ph.D., license no. 929, State of New Hampshire Board of Mental Health Practice, October 16, 2009.

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Milwaukee psychologist charged with sexual exploitation of patients; attorney admits sex did occur

In psychologist, sexual exploitation by a psychotherapist on August 15, 2010 at 3:03 pm

MILWAUKEE – A psychologist who has a Mount Pleasant office allegedly sexually exploited two patients, according to a criminal complaint filed this week in Milwaukee County Circuit Court.

Jeffrey A. Adamczak, 47, Oak Creek, faces two counts of sexual exploitation by a therapist. Each comes with the possible penalty of 7 1/2 years in prison.

Two women told Oak Creek police they had sexual contact with Adamczak while they were seeing him for therapy. According to court records, the alleged incidents took place at his Oak Creek office, 8825 S. Howell Ave. Adamczak is the executive director of and a psychologist with Psychological and Counseling Services; his office here is at 6929 Mariner Drive in Mount Pleasant.

Adamczak’s attorney, Gerald P. Boyle, said his client denies anything sexual happened while he was treating the women. Boyle said they intend to fight the allegations.

“We’re ready for this game,” Boyle said. “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. We’re prepared to go into court and battle this one out. … We fully expect that we will prevail.”

Boyle said the question in this case is not whether or not there was any sexual contact between Adamczak and either of the women, but whether it occurred while he was either woman’s therapist.

“The only question here is did it occur when they were doctor and patient,” Boyle said. “It did not. It did not. Later a relationship existed, but I’m not going to go into that more.”

(Editor’s note: Mr. Boyle is apparently unaware that though he may get his client’s criminal charges dismissed due to the possibility that sex did not occur during therapy or during the patient-therapist relationship, that sexual activity with a patient or former patient within two years of the termination of professional services may be grounds for disciplinary actions [such as suspension or revocation of Adamczak’s license] by the state Board of Psychology.)

The first woman told police she began seeing Adamczak for therapy in February 2002. While she was a patient, she said, Adamczak said things like “My wife asked me out of all my patients is there anyone you would be interested in and I told her you,” and that “If you were with me I would treat you like the queen you are.”

The woman said she filed for divorce in February 2005. A week later, she said, she went to give Adamczak a hug at the end of her session, which was routine. She said he spun her around and touched her genitals. They then kissed, she told police, and had sex on his office couch the next day.

After that, the woman said, Adamczak told her she could no longer be considered his patient and that there would be no further record of her visits. A patient termination summary was signed on March 1, 2005, and she said their relationship lasted through February 2006.

The second woman said she was a patient of Adamczak’s from mid-2001 until January 2005. She said at the end of a session in October 2004, Adamczak hugged her, and that they hugged at the end of each session after that. During her Dec. 23, 2004 session the woman said she “got the sense that Adamczak was looking at her differently,” according to the criminal complaint. At the end of the session, the woman said Adamczak kissed her, then turned her around and touched her genitals and breasts.

The woman said her last session with Adamczak was on Jan. 6, 2005. She said she went to the session because she was very confused and wanted to find out what had happened. She said Adamczak never mentioned the touching, and that they decided she would no longer see him as a therapist. At the end of the session the woman told police Adamczak said “If you lose the 60 pounds you want to lose, I’ll get the hotel room.”

Adamczak made his initial appearance on the charges Friday afternoon. He was given a $1,000 signature bond, and ordered not to have contact with the women, their families or places of employment. The Wisconsin Department of Regulation and Licensing shows his license is active, though a spokesman said Adamczak is the subject of an open investigation.

Source: Janine Anderson, “Therapist charged with having sexual relations with patients,” Journal Times, August 13, 2010.

California custody evaluator Roy W. Bradbury admitted under oath that he was unqualified to serve in the courts

In 730 evaluation, Divorce and custody, psychologist on August 13, 2010 at 1:38 pm

The man who did psychological evaluations of children involved in divorce cases in San Bernardino, Los Angeles and Orange counties, guiding the courts in determining custody, and whose recommendations controlled the fate of thousands of individuals for over a decade took his own life earlier this year.

The death of Dr. Roy W. Bradbury, who was a court appointed expert for so-called 730 evaluations, has thrown into question the validity of the determinations that were made in hundreds of divorce cases in San Bernardino County.

Bradbury worked with lawyers, known as minor counsels, who were appointed by the court to represent children caught in the middle of the divorce of their parents.

Bradbury admitted under oath that he had lacked the proper licensing updates with regard to domestic violence since 2003.

Those minor counsels would recommend interviews with and reports on the children, known as 730 evaluations, to determine the child’s state of mind, preference toward one parent or the other and to make an evaluation as to which parent should get primary custody of the child.

For his work, Bradbury was paid $120 per hour, or in the neighborhood of $10,000 to $15,000 for each 730 evaluation he delivered.

In virtually all cases in which Bradbury was brought in as an expert witness, the court made a custody decision in accordance with his recommendations.

Bradbury was deemed so credible, that judges routinely overlooked contradictory opinions rendered by other psychologists or evaluators brought in on the same cases.

For years, however, critics have alleged that Bradbury was capricious, arbitrary or biased in his findings and that he in fact lacked the requisite training and licensing to function in the role of an expert psychological  witness.

Within the last 12 months, evidence to undergird those accusations emerged. In September 2009, according to court records, Bradbury admitted under oath that he had lacked the proper licensing updates with regard to domestic violence since 2003.  Such a lack of credentials rendered him unqualified under the family law code to serve as an evaluator.

Despite Bradbury’s possession of a PhD. in psychology from USC, he was unable to pass the state of California’s licensing exam as a psychologist.

Earlier this year, as information about his lack of training and his fraudulent licensing spread, rumors were rife that Bradbury was on the verge of departing the United States and seeking some form of refuge in Costa Rica.

A little more than two months ago, he died by his own hand. His action in taking his own life brings into question his own mental stability, and by extension, the validity of the thousands of conclusions he provided about the mental state of others.

On Saturday May 29, according to the Los Angeles Coroner’s Office, Bradbury who resided in Walnut, drove to an industrial park in the city of Industry. There, at 21508 Ferrero Parkway, a spot secluded by railroad tracks and relatively isolated and remote buildings, Bradbury shot himself while in his vehicle.

According to the coroner’s office, Bradbury expired from a single gunshot wound to the head.

Two years ago, a website, http://courtlawabusers.blogspot.com/2008/11/dr-roy-bradbury.html, was set up for the purpose of chronicling complaints with regard to Bradbury.

Since that time, questions about his level of competency, his bias and his tendency to make findings that were considered damaging to children have mushroomed. That adverse publicity may have played a role in the more recent revelations about his lack of accreditation.

Despite those revelations, San Bernardino County Superior Court has maintained Bradbury on its experts list for psychologists.

In one case, an eight year old girl was removed from the custody of her mother. Subsequently, tapes of Bradbury’s sessions with the girl surfaced in which Bradbury could be heard screaming at the child. One counseling professional who has heard the tapes told the Sentinel the tapes demonstrated Bradbury was mocking a child under stress and was not engaged in a therapeutic relationship with his client.

In the aftermath of his death, dozens of Bradbury’s 730 evaluations are due for consideration in various courts in Southern California. Motions to strike several of those evaluations as evidence are now being prepared.

Source:  “Suicide Claims Bradbury,” San Bernardino County Sentinel, August 6, 2010.