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Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

State revokes counselor Andrew B. Phillip’s license for sex with teen client

In sexual exploitation by a psychotherapist, Uncategorized on May 26, 2010 at 7:19 pm

On May 6, 2010, the Washington Department of Health (DoH) revoked the credential of registered counselor Andrew Phillips for unprofessional conduct.

The DoH’s charges against Phillips (which were issued in April 2010) state that between July and August 2009, Phillips, who was then employed at at Community Counseling Institute of Tacoma, provided drug and alcohol counseling to a 17-year-old female client.   Between approximately October 2009 and November 2009, the client was placed with Phillips and his wife in the course of a dependency action.  Between these latter dates, Phillips is alleged to have engaged in sexual misconduct with the teenager, including but not limited to hugging and kissing the client, fondling client’s breasts, sexual intercourse and mutual oral sex.

Phillips was given the opportunity to respond to the charges in a DoH hearing but affirmatively waived his opportunity for a hearing in the matter.

Source: Findings of Fact, Conclusions of Law and Final Order (Waiver of Hearing) in the Matter of Andrew B. Phillips, Credential No. RC 60010154, Case No. M2010-314, State of Washington Department of Health, filed May 6, 2010 and Vernal Coleman, “Tacoma Drug Counselor Accused of Having Sex With 17-Year-Old Former Patient,” Tacoma Weekly, April 21, 2010.

Minnesota psychologist and counseling center director Terry Zuehlke gets suspended for sex with former patient

In psychologist, sexual exploitation by a psychotherapist, Uncategorized on May 26, 2010 at 9:11 am

The Minnesota Board of Psychology has disciplined Terry Zuehlke, a Golden Valley psychologist, for having a sexual relationship with a former patient.

The board suspended his license indefinitely, it said in a disciplinary action released Tuesday.

The board said that Zuehlke, who was executive director of Pathways Psychological Services in Golden Valley, treated a patient between 2001 and 2004 for individual and couples counseling. Within several months of ending their professional relationship, Zuehlke and his client saw each other socially, then they engaged in sexual activity, the board said.

Zuehlke violated state statute and board rules by having a sexual relationship with a patient within two years of terminating a professional one, the board said. It suspended his license for 21 months. To have his license reinstated, Zuehlke must undergo a psychological evaluation, agree to treatment if recommended, and take courses in professional protocols. He must also pay a fine of $2,500.

Source: “Golden Valley psychologist is disciplined by state board,” Minneapolis Star-Tribune, May 25, 2010.

School psychologist Craig L. Figley gets 14.5 years prison for child molestation

In psychologist, Uncategorized on May 10, 2010 at 9:30 am

Fifty-nine-year-old Craig Figley, a former psychologist for the Colville School District (Colville is located in the northeast corner of Washington state) was sentenced today to serve at least 14.5 years in prison for molesting an 11-year-old student and attempting to molest another.

Figley pleaded guilty in March 2010 to molesting the boys and admitted he’d “groomed” the victims to take advantage of them.

In court, Figley said “I have committed illegal and shameful acts.” Those illegal and shameful acts involve two underage boys.

Figley has a history of child molestation, including victims who were friends of his own son

Figley admitted repeatedly fondling the children while caring for them, buying them video games, and taking them out for dinner.

In addition to first-degree child molestation, Figley pleaded guilty to possessing child pornography after images of young boys were found on his school computer.

Figley was a member of a multidisciplinary team that helped coordinate law enforcement investigations of child abuse.

Following sentencing, his case will go before a state board that reviews the sentences of sex offenders, and that board could decide to keep him in prison for life, Stevens County Prosecutor Tim Rasmussen said.

Source: “School counselor sentenced for molestation,” Spokesman Review, May 10, 2010.

Vincent Festa, former New York school psychologist, arrested for violation of sex offender laws

In psychologist, Uncategorized on April 28, 2010 at 8:09 pm

A retired school psychologist who is a registered sex offender was arrested on Thursday for failing to register Internet service providers and e-mail addresses, Suffolk County police said.

Vincent Festa, a Level 3 sex offender, was using e-mail addresses and Internet service providers that he failed to register as required by the New York State Sex Offender Registration Act, police said.

Computer Crimes Unit and Special Victims Section detectives executed a search warrant at Festa’s home where computers, hard drives and assorted storage media were seized on April 13.

Festa, 80, of Ronkonkoma, was charged with sex offender registration violation, a felony.

Festa, who was the psychologist at Herricks High School was  sentenced in July 1995 to 5 years’ probation after pleading guilty to sodomizing teenage boys.

Festa was indicted on 11 counts, including third-degree sodomy, sexual abuse and endangering the welfare of a child, after six teenage boys from the Ronkonkoma area came forward in 1993.  He was accused of enticing the boys to his home to do lawn work and then abusing them. None of the victims were Herricks students.

Festa originally pleaded innocent but later agreed to plead guilty to three counts of third-degree sodomy.

Source: Patrick Kelton “Sex Offender Charged With Failing to Register E-mail,” Long Island Press, April 22, 2010 and Deepti Hajela, “Ex-School Psychologist Sentenced in Sex Abuse,” Newsday, July 11, 1995.