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You will build upon the work you did for the previously in order to complete this final draft of your forensic examination.
You will build upon the work you did for the previously in order to complete this final draft of your forensic examination. You will add information, the most significant of which will be a diagnostic and opinion section. Your work from the previous two, in addition to the additional info that comes later, should be included in this one. Include the following in your response:
Introductory Remarks, Informed Consent, Background Information
· Briefly describe the fictional evaluee’s social, educational, occupational, substance use, medical, and psychiatric history.
· Include mock collateral information obtained during the course of the evaluation.
1. Mental Status Examination
· Using a formal mini-mental-status exam, describe your mock client’s performance on domains such as orientation, immediate recall, attention and calculation, recall, language, judgment, ability to abstract, and intelligence. Interview Questions, Test Battery, Diagnosis
· Provide a thorough DSM-5 diagnosis for your mock client.
· Provide a defensible forensic opinion that relates to the legal question asked.
· Justify your opinion.
This should fulfill the following objectives: A forensic evaluation appropriate to the age and gender of the fictional evaluee.
A description of the evaluee’s relevant history and personal characteristics.
An explanation of all aspects of informed consent pertaining to this evaluation.
A description of the fictional evaluee’s performance on a formal mini-mental-status exam.
A thorough DSM-5 diagnosis for the fictional evaluee.
A justification of a forensic opinion addressing the legal question asked.
communication that is scholarly, professional, and consistent with expectations for members of the psychological professions.
SAMPLE OF FORENSIC EVALUATION
January 1, 2016
Formatting: current edition APA style and format- 8 pages. Times New Roman, 12 points.
Honorable James T. Kirk, Judge
County Probate Court
123 Court Street
Anytown, CA 12345
RE: Sue Jones
CASE NUMBER: 2016-GI-00000
Mental health evaluation
Dear Judge Kirk:
Sue Jones is a 52-year-old Caucasian female who was referred by the Court for a guardianship evaluation.
Dr. Betty Rubble interviewed Ms. Jones at Anytown Nursing Home on January 1, 2017 for approximately 105 minutes. She was administered the Independent Living Scales on that date.
Prior to the commencement of this evaluation and psychological testing, Ms. Jones was advised of the nature and purpose of the evaluation. Ms. Jones was informed that the resulting report was not confidential, and that information obtained could be included in the report that would be submitted to the Court. She was aware this information was not related to treatment, but rather for her current case. Ms. Jones was provided this information both orally and in a written format. She stated that she understood the information provided to her, including the limits of confidentiality and her rights concerning the evaluation.
SOURCES OF INFORMATION:
1. Collateral contact with Wilma Flintstone, Ms. Jones’ legal guardian, via telephone on January 1, 2017.
1. General Hospital, psychiatric records.
1. Guardianship Services records.
SOCIAL HISTORY: Ms. Jones reported that she was born on January 1, 1963 and raised in Kentucky. She said her father worked as a security guard and died eight years ago, while her mother worked as a waitress and died five years ago. She identified having a “good” relationship with her parents. Ms. Jones said she has two brothers with whom she has an “all right” relationship, as well as one older maternal half sister that she doesn’t “get along with at all.” Ms. Jones stated that one of her brother has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder and noted her brothers and her father had difficulties with alcoholism. She denied any childhood history of abuse and reported that she ran away from home at 17 years of age when she became pregnant.
Ms. Jones reported that she lived independently until two years ago when she was placed in a nursing home. She said she remains in a nursing home against her will because the court has appointed her a legal guardian due to her alcoholism. She would like to return to her home of Nowhere, California where her cousin lives. She said that she talks with her cousin regularly on the phone but acknowledged that she has not seen her in many years. She does not want a guardian and would like to make her own decisions.
According to her legal guardian, Ms. Flintstone, prior to her nursing home placement, Ms. Jones was in sober housing. That home had staff present on site, but Ms. Jones continued to drink alcohol and visit hospital emergency rooms to obtain opiates.
EDUCATION HISTORY: Ms. Jones stated that she last completed the 9th grade and had “all right” grades. She said that she was not diagnosed with any learning disabilities, but offered, “I skipped school a lot.” She denied receiving any further education.
WORK AND MILITARY HISTORY: Ms. Jones denied any military history. She said she has held “quite a few” jobs, including positions as a waitress, factory worker, and convenience-store manager. She said her longest position was the convenience store job, which lasted for three years. Ms. Jones indicated she was never fired from any jobs. She estimated she most recently worked 20 years ago. She has received SSDI benefits for at least 20 years for being “bipolar” and “schizophrenic.” Ms. Jones indicated she has a payee to manage her finances and she does not mind having one.
RELATIONSHIP HISTORY: Ms. Jones has been married once and is currently divorced. She indicated she “ran away” to New York with a boyfriend at 17 years of age because she was pregnant. She ultimately had an abortion and was unable to bear children thereafter. Ms. Jones was married from 1982 to 1992. Her husband worked as a contractor. She said they divorced because he was “always in jail.” Her most recent romantic relationship was “five years ago.” She indicated she left that man because “we argued a lot” and he engaged in domestic violence against her. Ms. Jones said she is not dating at this time.
SUBSTANCE USE HISTORY: Ms. Jones reported that she first drank alcohol at 16 years of age, during which time she “drank on weekends.” She said her heaviest use of alcohol occurred in her 30s and 40s, during which time she drank a “30-pack” of beer daily. She offered, “I’m an alcoholic,” but indicated she has been sober for the past three years that she has been in nursing homes. Ms. Jones reported that she developed tolerance to alcohol, experienced withdrawal symptoms when she could not drink, craved alcohol, gave up important activities to drink, had difficulty controlling her alcohol use, frequently drove a vehicle under the influence of alcohol, and continued to drink despite the legal and financial problems it caused her.
Ms. Jones said that she first used marijuana at 16 years of age, during which time she used that substance once every few weeks. She said her heaviest use of marijuana was in her 40s, when she used marijuana daily. She stated that she last used marijuana three years ago. Ms. Jones reported that she gave up important activities to use marijuana and frequently drove a vehicle under the influence of marijuana, but otherwise denied any problems associated with her use of that substance.
Ms. Jones reported that she began using crack cocaine in her 40s, when she used that substance “a couple times a week.” Again, she indicated she stopped using that substance three years ago. Ms. Jones reported that she developed tolerance to cocaine, craved it, had difficulty controlling her use of that substance, spent a great deal of time involved in activities related to her cocaine use, gave up important activities to use cocaine, frequently drove a vehicle under the influence of cocaine, and continued to use it despite the financial problems it caused her.
Ms. Jones indicated that she began abusing her Percocet prescription in her 40s. She said that whenever she ran out, she bought more off the street. She estimated that she took four to five pills per day. Ms. Jones reported that she gave up important activities to use opiates and frequently drove a vehicle under the influence of opiates, but otherwise denied experiencing any difficulties related to her use of opiates.
With regard to substance abuse treatment, Ms. Jones said she received inpatient treatment due to her alcohol dependence in her 30s. When asked how she would prevent substance relapse if in the community, Ms. Jones replied, “I’d plan on going to meetings,” and get a “sponsor.” When asked how she would attend such meetings, she responded, “Have someone pick me up.” When asked who might be able to do so, she replied, “I don’t know,” but possibly “friends” or other people in Alcoholics Anonymous.
LEGAL HISTORY: Ms. Jones denied any juvenile legal history. She reported that as an adult, she was convicted of “petty theft” once after she stole a candy bar from a store and ate it in front of the clerk because “I was trying to go to jail to see him” (her husband). Ms. Jones indicated she also has one “DUI” conviction as well.
MEDICAL HISTORY: Ms. Jones reported that she cannot walk due to neuropathy related to diabetes. She said she also has COPD, cirrhosis of the liver, and cancer in her left kidney. She could not recall all of her current medications, except that she takes ibuprofen for pain related to cancer and insulin for diabetes. She denied any history of seizure, stroke, coma, or traumatic brain injury. Ms. Jones identified her only surgeries as a tonsillectomy and an appendectomy.
Records from General Hospital indicate Ms. Jones has cirrhosis of the liver, COPD, diabetes mellitus type II, hypercholesterolemia, hypothyroidism, GERD, hyperlipidemia, pulmonary disease, endocrine disease, and hypertension. Her surgeries, serious illnesses, and accidents included an appendectomy, cholecystectomy, tonsillectomy, and adenoidectomy, and right ankle fracture.
PSYCHIATRIC HISTORY: Ms. Jones denied any history of inpatient psychiatric hospitalizations. She said she received began receiving outpatient psychiatric services many years ago, and is currently a patient at Psychological Services. Ms. Jones said she has been prescribed “Risperdal, Haldol, Geodon, Trazodone, and Seroquel” in the past, but was unsure what she is taking now. She indicated that without the medication, she hears “voices.” She stated that she is unable to discern what the voices are saying because there are “like in a distance.” She indicated that she has never been frightened of the voices or experienced any delusions or paranoia.
Ms. Jones also reported a history of mood disturbance. She said she has attempted to commit suicide on two occasions, once by cutting her wrists and once by attempting to overdose on her medications. She estimated those occurred in her 30s and 40s. Ms. Jones reported that she has also experienced symptoms consistent with mania, including a decreased need for sleep for three days, a significantly increased energy level, and increased goal-directed activity; specifically, shopping and spending all of her money on clothing and household items. She said that during those periods, she did not experience any grandiosity, racing thoughts, or rapid speech. Ms. Jones reported that those periods would cease when her friends would encourage her to resume taking her medications and go to see her counselor.
Records from General Hospital indicate on January 1, 2014, it was determined that Ms. Jones should be placed in a nursing home. She was diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder, cannabis abuse, and borderline personality disorder. It was noted that during periods of psychological decompensation, Ms. Jones becomes physically and verbally aggressive and moderately violent. She has also had auditory hallucinations. When informed that she would be going to a nursing home, Ms. Jones became verbally abusive, swung her walker at others, threatened to harm others, and threatened to harm herself. Indeed, she reportedly grabbed a phone cord and wrapped it around her neck. It was indicated that Ms. Jones had a lengthy history of psychiatric hospitalizations and had not been compliant with medications. Within the previous 30 days prior to that report, Ms. Jones’s symptoms included suicidal thoughts, suicidal threats, suicidal attempts, gestures, medication refusal, lability, hallucinations, anxiety, worry, panic reactions, verbal aggression, physical aggression, combative behaviors, destructive behaviors, threats toward others, abrasiveness, irritable behaviors, disruptive behaviors, conflicts with others, inappropriate communication of anger, self-injurious, self-abuse behaviors, need for restraints, refusal of care, resistance receiving care, inappropriate statements, inappropriate behaviors, and homicidal behaviors. It was reported that Ms. Jones required assistance with decision making, judgment, mobility, and ambulation.
In a similar assessment at General Hospital on January 1, 2015, it was again opined that Ms. Jones required nursing home placement. Her diagnosis at that time was bipolar disorder not otherwise specified and schizoaffective disorder.
PSYCHOLOGICAL TESTING: On the Independent Living Scales, Ms. Jones obtained a Full Scale score of 95, in the moderate range of functioning, consistent with individuals who live semi-independently. On the Memory/Orientation and Health and Safety subscales, her scores were in the high range, consistent with individuals who live independently. However, her scores on Managing Money, Managing Home and Transportation, and Social Adjustment were all in the moderate range. Her scores on Problem Solving were in the high range, but her scores on Performance/Information fell in the moderate range.
Specifically, on the Memory/Orientation items, Ms. Jones can remember her phone number and address and recall a list of items and the details of an appointment. She was well oriented to time and place. On the Health and Safety items, she was aware of how to call the police, get medical help, and handle her physical care and hygiene. She was also aware of how to take precautions to protect her safety. On the Managing Money items, Ms. Jones knew how she was supported financially, knew how to complete a money order, knew why it was important to pay bills, knew what health and home insurance was for, knew the purpose of a will, and knew why it was important to read documents carefully. On the other hand, she was unable to calculate how much change she should get back for a small purchase and was unable to perform basic math calculations. On the Managing Home and Transportation items, Ms. Jones knew how to use the phone, address an envelope, utilize public transportation, and figure out how to get home repairs done. However, she was unsure how to manage routine household problems or utilize a map. On the Social Adjustment items, Ms. Jones does not have any regular, in-person contact with anyone and was not sure she would be missed if she was no longer around. With regard to Problem Solving, Ms. Jones exhibits adequate ability to manage situations requiring reasoning ability. However, the Performance/Information items indicate she cannot perform many tasks independently and does not know the basic information for answering a question.
MENTAL STATUS EXAMINATION:
Appearance, Attitude, & Behavior: Ms. Jones is a 52-year-old Caucasian female of average height. She was overweight and used a wheelchair. She had short brown and grey hair. She was casually dressed and she had good hygiene. She made appropriate eye contact. She provided information in a clear and coherent manner, and she did not demonstrate any unusual physical movements. She needed glasses to read. Ms. Jones was cooperative and pleasant during this evaluation. She was friendly and offered personal information with ease. As the interview was conducted in her room, this examiner noted Ms. Jones kept her room neat and tidy.
Speech, Perception, Thought Process, & Thought Content: Ms. Jones’ speech was normal in tone and volume. Ms. Jones denied experiencing any current delusional beliefs, auditory or visual hallucinations, and there was no indication by her behavior or speech that she was experiencing any perceptual disturbances during this evaluation. Her thought process was logical and goal-directed.
Mood & Affect: Ms. Jones did not present with any observable symptoms of mania, including an abnormally elevated or irritable mood, grandiosity, increased talkativeness, or racing thoughts. In addition, Ms. Jones denied current suicidal and homicidal ideation. Her mood was euthymic and her affect was appropriate.
Cognition: Ms. Jones was oriented to person, place, and date. Her recent and remote memory were intact as demonstrated by her ability to recall recent and past personal information with ease. Ms. Jones displayed no difficulties with immediate recall, and could recall three of three words after a brief delay. Her attention and concentration were adequate, and she was able to spell
world backwards and perform Serial 7 subtractions without error. Ms. Jones was able to sustain attention without difficulty throughout this interview.
Overall, results of the Folstein Mini-Mental State Exam indicated normal functioning (score 30 out of 30) in the areas of orientation, immediate recall, attention and calculation, recall, and language.
Insight & Judgment: Ms. Jones appeared to have good insight into her mental health issues. When asked, “What do you do if you’re the first person in a movie theater to see smoke and fire?” Ms. Jones replied, “Holler ‘Fire’ and get out,” and tell others to leave. When asked, “What would you do if you found on the street of a city an envelope that was sealed, addressed, and stamped?” she responded, “If it’s money, I’m keeping it,” but “maybe take it to the post office” otherwise. When asked, “Why shouldn’t people smoke in bed?” she replied, “Might catch fire.”
Alcohol Use Disorder, Severe, In a Controlled Environment (303.90)
Ms. Jones has a problematic pattern of alcohol use. She reported that she developed tolerance to alcohol, experienced withdrawal symptoms when she could not drink, craved alcohol, gave up important activities to drink, had difficulty controlling her alcohol use, frequently drove a vehicle under the influence of alcohol, and continued to drink despite the legal and financial problems it caused her.
Stimulant Use Disorder, Severe, In a Controlled Environment (304.20)
Ms. Jones also has a problematic pattern of crack cocaine use. She reported that she developed tolerance to cocaine, craved it, had difficulty controlling her use of that substance, spent a great deal of time involved in activities related to her cocaine use, gave up important activities to use cocaine, frequently drove a vehicle under the influence of cocaine, and continued to use it despite the financial problems it caused her.
Unspecified Bipolar and Related Disorder (296.80)
Ms. Jones reported a history of manic episodes during which she experiences a decreased need for sleep, a significantly increased energy level, and increased goal-directed activity. At times, she has reportedly experienced auditory hallucinations as well. However, it is difficult to determine the extent to which her significant substance abuse and maladaptive personality traits contribute to her mood disturbance.
Borderline Personality Traits
Ms. Jones also displays a pervasive pattern of instability in her interpersonal relationships and affects, as well as marked impulsivity. She has shown recurrent suicidal behavior, gestures, and threats.
Opioid Use Disorder, Mild, In a Controlled Environment (305.50)
Ms. Jones reported that she abused her narcotic pain medication, Percocet. She said she gave up important activities to use opiates and frequently drove a vehicle under the influence of opiates.
Cannabis Use Disorder, Mild, In a Controlled Environment (305.20)
Ms. Jones reported that she used marijuana daily for many years. She said she gave up important activities to use marijuana and frequently drove a vehicle under the influence of marijuana.
OPINION: According to all available information, Ms. Jones has adequate cognitive skills to reside semi-independently at this time (that is, with significant assistance from case managers and other professional services). However, her psychological functioning is only at this adequate level currently because of the structure and supervision provided by the nursing home. Indeed, when last in an independent housing situation, Ms. Jones was heavily abusing alcohol and cocaine as well as marijuana and opiates. It does not appear that she has any significant periods of sobriety while living in the community. She was not always compliant with her psychotropic medication due to her substance use and other factors, which has resulted in psychological decompensation for her bipolar disorder. Ms. Jones also has a lengthy history of suicide attempts and aggression towards others. In addition, Ms. Jones has several serious medical conditions, including but not limited to, the inability to ambulate without a wheelchair, cancer, cirrhosis, and diabetes. Despite all of the aforementioned issues, Ms. Jones continues to believe that she could live independently in her own apartment, which is not realistic. She does not have an adequate plan for maintaining sobriety and it is unlikely that she would be able to do so without her current level of support. Therefore, at this time, it is recommended that she continue to receive guardianship services.
Dr. Betty Rubble
Honorable white T. judge
Country probate court
123 court street
Anytown, CA 12536
RE: James white
CASE NUMBER: 2016- GI-000
Mental health evaluation
Dear judge white:
James white is a 22 year old male who was referred by the court for guardianship evaluation.
I had have 105 interview with Mr. James at the Anytown Nursing Home on January 1, 2019 was conducted by phone. On that day, he was given a battery of tests called the Independent Living Scales. Mr. James was informed of the nature and goal of this diagnostic and psychological testing before it began. Mr. James was advised that the material he provided would be included in a report to be presented to the Court and that this report would not be treated as confidential. It wasn’t treatment-related data; he only needed to know it for his present situation. Mr. James received both verbal and written communication of this content. He claimed to have grasped all of the material presented to him, including his rights and the scope of the secrecy protections surrounding the examination.
INTRODUCTION: The ability to recognize when and how to get a forensic examination, which goes beyond the boundaries of the required clinical interview, might be crucial. Certain items are necessary for any assessment. Psychologists often start with clinical consultation. While the interview is an improvement over relying only on self-report, it is still not the most reliable assessment technique, and here is where some researchers draw the line. A client’s self-report should be only one piece of the puzzle in a forensic examination, but psychological testing can help make sure that’s not the case. Numerous psychological devices allow for this accurate and trustworthy testing. This is preferable to depending on the clients’ self-report acquired during the interview and is crucial in determining whether a person is generating an impression to deceive the examiner on reality.
In this case, the forensic evidence of the crime is at issue in court. The material gathered by detectives has been turned over to the prosecutors leading the investigation. The waiver of Miranda rights regarding the subject’s confessional ability, the subject’s sanity at the time of the crime, and independent medical examination are crucial legal factors in this case. To establish the legal aspects of the offense, it is suggested that numerous tests be performed. The client’s mental health, including their emotions and intellect, should be evaluated comprehensively. This may be where some psychologists stop, but it should give the client the feeling that they had a comprehensive examination. Therefore, to conduct a thorough forensic analysis, collecting data from many sources is necessary to determine the validity of the prosecution’s claim. This requires the psychologists to perform extensive research, including reviewing client history, interviewing relevant parties, and conducting a comprehensive evaluation, all in the interest of providing an unbiased report.
Name: James Adino
Date of Birth: November 1, 2005
Date of Report: March 15, 2019
James has a reputation as an aggressive guy in the area. A case of aggravated assault has been filed against him. He had been on probation for a conviction of committing severe bodily injury before his arrest. His drug usage and tendency toward violence have resulted in many arrests. You should know that he is staying with the grandma while he awaits trial. His older sister committed the crime of drug trafficking and is currently doing time in jail. Few details about his childhood are known; however, his alleged father was a career criminal. Even yet, it’s important to remember that he has received glowing reviews from his instructors and the probation officer. I will need to question him privately to compile the forensic evaluation report.
Here, the customer is briefed on the potential outcomes, advantages, and alternatives of the forensic analysis. James will be advised that the evaluation is being conducted and that the results may be shared with the court or the prosecution. In this scenario, I would ensure the patient is free to make informed choices regarding the operations. I would explain to the client that we need to find out if they are competent to face trial, if they are trying to rewrite history and if they have a legitimate defence to the charges against them. In this scenario, I would inquire as to whether or not they were experiencing any mental disorder. I would also let them know that we’re checking their mental health after the incident to see if there’s been any damage done. For clarity, I would inform the customer that the evaluation results are private and would not be disclosed without their permission. Due to our strict privacy guidelines, James will be questioned on his own unless he specifically requests the presence of another individual. If it’s essential to discuss the details of the evaluation procedure to preserve his life, however, this can be done even without their consent. It would be wise if they could answer and collaborate in a way that would assist him in getting the information he needs.
Our offices will serve as the venue for James’s upcoming interview. First, I’ll give him the typical interview materials. This entails the customary questioning and testing that occurs during interviews and the usual consent documentation. The interview results will be shared in full with the case’s lead investigator. Since James is still a kid, one of the most important things to do before the interview is to make sure he has his legal guardian’s permission to participate. There are several reasons why asking medical interview questions independently is crucial.
I would ask them pointed questions designed to prove they were mentally capable of confessing and waiving their rights following the Miranda ruling. The purpose of these inquiries would be to determine whether or not the suspect is of sound mind to waive their Miranda rights. It will also be determined through the questions asked if they have any comprehension of their rights.
By asking probing inquiries, the prosecutor can determine whether or not the defendant had the requisite mental capacity at the time of the alleged crime. There will be inquiries to see if their mental state played a role in their behavior. They’ll also try to determine if the offender was suffering from a psychotic episode at the time of the crime. There will be an emphasis on asking about any previous mental illness diagnoses. Interview questions will also probe whether the respondent has a history of substance misuse or was under the influence of drugs at the time of the incident.
There are a few distinct reasons why inquiries have been made about the independent medical assessment of harm to one’s mental health. That’s why I’ll probably inquire as to whether or not the individual is under long-term medical care. Liability questions will also focus on whether or not the individual has been made aware of any lasting impairment or handicap due to the trauma they have experienced. Any suspicion of malingering or independent medical examination concerning trauma injury and the medical lawsuit will also be probed.
The supporting data establishes the third party’s actions concerning the problems. This is how the outsider sees the evaluation process working in this respect. For instance, psychological testing on trauma is a standard part of the forensic exam. This includes details on the third party’s knowledge of the patient’s medical condition, accident, or problem and the patient’s social and medical background. I’d want to review the case reports that the police officers that looked into it submitted. These are crucial for grasping how they evaluate legal infractions. Copies of police interviews with the suspect(s) concerning the criminal activity are among the information I would want to get from the suspect(s). Essential to put the case into perspective this data is. The recordings and images were taken at the murder site; if they can be obtained, they would be the third piece of information I would like to get in this case.
Additionally, I would try to learn more about the accused person’s criminal background. This is crucial in proving their guilt or laying the groundwork for their defense. I would also try to learn more about audio or video recordings of the incident’s immediate proceedings, subsequent events, and the individual in question. This data is crucial for understanding their state of mind and the possible emotional and psychological effects of the incident.
The time frame would cover the five years before the alleged criminal act and any relevant data available. The individual’s school records for the five years preceding the alleged criminal act might provide valuable insight. In addition, I would look into getting the accused person’s medical history as part of the collateral material. The appropriate authorities will be contacted for any relevant data on the individual. If I were in this situation, I’d ask the parole or probation authorities for all pertinent information. Especially in interviews conducted soon after a traumatic event, details about the person’s friends, family, and teachers would be invaluable. Finally, I would look into interviewing other support staff, including probation officers, police, and case manager, right after a traumatic occurrence to see what they can tell me.
When evaluating introspective issues regarding cognitive decline, a battery of tests is necessary. Based on the preceding analysis, the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI-2) and the Structured Interview of Reported Systems (SIR-2) are required (MMPI-2). These two resources are crucial for determining whether or not the person can be trusted. These two methods are selected based on their track records of successfully diagnosing and treating participants who fake psychosis. This is necessary to ensure the truthfulness of the participant’s account and prevent him from embellishing or making up details.
The Structured Interview of Reported Symptoms (SIR) is a diagnostic instrument designed to investigate methods already established in the literature as crucial to determining sobriety. The availability of the self-report tool for reliability inspired the development of this interview-based instrument. In 1992, the device was upgraded to include a more accurate scale, test security, and straightforward interpretation of the outcomes. Instead of relying on the interview’s self-report, the tool ID is crucial for assessing the participant’s replies and gathering further information. Therefore, this instrument will be essential in evaluating the subject, malingering, and self-reporting structured interviews. It has been shown that a person malingering may react differently depending on the presenting style used. The error may arise from differences in reactions and approaches; thus, the instrument will be crucial in determining its magnitude. As a result, the audience will believe that the provided forensic examination report is based on the subject’s actual symptoms and not their imagination.
I would also use the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory for this forensic assessment. At the University of Minnesota, back in the 1940s, this instrument was developed. This tool is crucial for the therapist to determine the extent of the patient’s psychopathology. This is crucial for creating a reasonable treatment strategy. It’s also a personality test. This instrument will ensure that the subject’s answers are consistent. Instead of only going with the offered explanations, you’ll be able to analyze the subject’s psychology more precisely, thanks to this. One need not accept the word of others on the matter.
Using a made-up customer named James, the analysis has effectively contributed to creating a rough draft of a forensic report. The essential parts of the final forensic report have been incorporated into the draft. The introduction and description, interview questions, informed consent, supplementary materials, and battery of tests all fall under this category.
De Marchi, B., & Balboni, G. (2018). Detecting malingering mental illness in forensics: Known-Group Comparison and Simulation Design with MMPI-2, SIMS and NIM.
Mulay, A. L., Mivshek, M., Kaufman, H., & Waugh, M. H. (2018). The ethics of empathy: Walking a fine line in forensic evaluations.
Journal of Forensic Psychology Research and Practice,
Magaldi, D., & Berler, M. (2020). Semi-structured interviews.
Encyclopedia of personality and individual differences, 4825-4830.
Kois, L. E., Reed, J., Warren, J. I., & Chauhan, P. (2019). Defense referral patterns are associated with competency to stand trial, mental state at the time of the offense, and combined evaluations.
Journal of Forensic Psychology Research and Practice,
Floyd, A. E., & Gupta, V. (2022). Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory. In
StatPearls [Internet]. StatPearls Publishing.
Winningham, D. B., Rogers, R., Drogin, E. Y., & Velsor, S. F. (2018). Missing out on Miranda: Investigating Miranda comprehension and waiver decisions in adult inpatients.
International journal of law and psychiatry,
Choice of Evaluation Methodology
Competency to Stand Trial
The first type of forensic evaluation determines whether a defendant is competent to stand trial. Criminal procedures may be halted when the law considers a defendant “capable of standing trial” (Beltrani, Zapf, & Brown, 2015). If a defendant’s mental disease prevents them from defending themselves in court, he or she may be deemed incompetent to stand trial. Approximately 60,000 defendants are evaluated annually to determine their intelligence. This makes it the most-studied forensic subject (Morris & DeYoung, 2012). In the past, the Supreme Court has examined a defendant’s ability to stand trial. Dusky v. United States (1960) was case number one. In this instance, the court determined that a defendant must have “adequate current ability to converse with his attorney with a sufficient degree of logical knowledge” and “a rational as well as factual understanding of the proceedings against him” (Dusky vs. the United States, 1960). When a defendant is deemed incompetent, the following question is whether or not he or she will ever be able to face trial. This is known as the “restoration of competence.” In the case Jackson v. Indiana (1972), the court ruled that defendants could not be detained for longer than the time necessary to determine whether the defendant would soon be able to make judgments. If it is determined that the defendant will not be able to recover, the state has two options. Either they must initiate civil actions similar to those for those who have not been charged with a crime or release the individual without criminal charges (Jackson vs. Indiana, 1972). This review is useful when the defendant does not grasp how the court operates and is unable to defend themselves.
Evaluations of child custody are the second sort of forensic evaluation. Custody evaluations are conducted to determine which parent and child would offer the greatest environment for the youngster. When divorcing parents cannot agree on who should have custody of their children, this evaluation is frequently conducted (Melton et al., 2017). For this type of examination, you must complete a series of steps. The evaluator will likely wish to speak with the youngster and the child’s parents multiple times. The individual doing the evaluation may speak with the child’s significant others. This group may include family members, friends, and even teachers. The evaluator will also be interested in how each parent communicates with the youngster. The evaluator will compile all the data obtained throughout the evaluation phase into a report. This report will be presented to the court, which will use it to reach the ultimate determination (What You Need to Know About Child Custody Evaluations, 2020).
The third type of forensic evaluation that can be conducted is an assessment of a parent’s fitness to be a parent. This type of evaluation is comparable to those used to determine child custody. Even though both include where a child should live, the parental fitness exam determines whether a parent should have parental rights. In this type of evaluation, the findings of a comprehensive inquiry of the mental processes of the parents are given significant weight. When neglect or abuse is typically discovered, the following step is the termination of parental rights (Forensic Parent Fitness Evaluation, 2020). The Parent Awareness Skills Survey illustrates the type of examination (PASS) for parenting fitness evaluation. This survey examines parents’ perspectives on various circumstances that are likely to arise in their daily life. When determining a person’s suitability as a parent, assessing their knowledge of ideal parenting practices can be useful. The second examination type is the Parent Perception of Child Profile (PPCP). This profile will assess parents’ knowledge of their child’s likes and dislikes, routines, academic history, and medical history. This exam effectively determines how well a parent understands their child, as it contains questions about the youngster. If a parent does not know much about their children, the evaluator may determine that the person is unfit to be a parent. The final exam to determine a parent’s physical fitness is administered to the child, not the parent. This exam reveals how an individual views his or her connections (PORT). This test indicates whether the child has learned to interact with their parent in a way that helps them feel at ease (Bird, 2020).
Mitigation of Penalty
The fourth forensic examination type involves determining whether a sentence should be shortened. If an individual can employ this type of examination, his or her sentence may be reduced. Most of the time, this evaluation is utilized to determine whether or not to execute the defendant. Infrequently does the defendant not match the insanity or incompetence pleas or defenses criteria. In certain instances, the defendant’s mental history and state of mind at the time of the offense could still be utilized to mitigate the severity of the sentence. The court case Hamblin v. Mitchell involves a sentence reduction. In Hamblin v. Mitchell (2003) case, the Supreme Court reversed a lower court’s ruling because the defense attorney failed to thoroughly investigate the defendant’s mental history before the sentencing phase of the trial. This case is significant because it demonstrated beyond a reasonable doubt that a defendant’s mental background may have played a role in their actions. Even if they are not deemed incompetent, they may still be able to use the statute to reduce their sentence.
The fifth and final type of forensic examination determines the likelihood that an individual would commit a violent act in the future. There are three ways to determine the violent nature of anything. The first type of judgment makes no logic whatsoever. This is by far the most prevalent strategy. It depends greatly on how skilled and smart the examiner is and how well they have performed in the past. The second category is scheduled evaluations. The actuarial prediction is the most extreme form of violence evaluation. According to “Forensic Psychologist in Violence Risk Assessment, 2020,” this is the “formal application of set, established methodologies to determine the chance that violence would occur again.” (A forensic psychologist who evaluates the likelihood of violence). Several tests are conducted to investigate the violence. The Static-99 test was feasible. This ten-question actuarial exam is designed to determine the likelihood that an individual would commit a sexual or violent offense in the future (Melton et al., 2017). The new Violence Risk Appraisal Guide test can be taken (VRAG-R). This 12-question test predicts the angry behavior of mentally ill offenders. According to most specialists, it is the actuarial tool with the best level of validity at present (Risk Assessment Approaches, 2015).
Chosen evaluation: Child Custody
Key Legal Questions
On behalf of my hypothetical client, Mr. Johnson, I’ll conduct a custody review. According to this study, the following are the most essential legal problems to consider:
1. Which parent should be legally and physically accountable for the child or children?
2. Should each parent have sole custody of the child, shared custody, or joint custody?
Methodology of Child Custody Evaluation
It takes multiple steps to determine who will have custody of a child. Interviewing is the initial step in the process. The evaluator will conduct interviews with both sets of parents, the child (or children), stepparents, grandparents, and anyone involved in the case. Each individual and the evaluator will conduct separate conversations. After these initial interviews, interviews with the parents and children will be conducted. Each parent’s interaction with their child will be observed. Following the completion of all interviews, psychological evaluations are conducted. Each parent must pass a series of challenging examinations. The MMPI-2 is the most essential evaluation instrument to consider. All parents must complete these assessments. After completing the psychological evaluation, the evaluator will gather any further information necessary to produce a comprehensive report on child custody. The judge will review the report based on its contents (Melton et al., 2017).
Appropriateness of Methodology
This strategy is ideal because it allows you to provide comprehensive responses to the most essential legal issues, providing you with the fullest picture possible at this time. Also, it allows for a comprehensive examination to determine where the child should reside (Melton et al., 2017).
Beltrani, A. M., Zapf, P., & Brown, J. (2015).
Competency to Stand Trial: What Forensic Psychologists Need to Know. Retrieved from
Bird, B. (2020).
Guidelines for Parental Fitness Evaluations. Retrieved from
Dusky v. United States, 362, U.S. 402 (1960). (2019). Retrieved from
Forensic Parent Fitness Evaluation. (n.d.). Retrieved from
Forensic Psychologists in Violence Risk Assessment. (2020). Retrieved from
Gaskell, S. (2020).
Mitigating Factors Psychological Evaluations: Chicago, IL & Atlanta, GA. Retrieved from
Hamblin v. Mitchell. (2003). Retrieved from
Jackson v. Indiana, 406 U.S. 715 (1972). (2020). Retrieved from
Melton, G. B., Petrila, J., Poythress, N. G., Slobogin, C., Otto, R. K., Mossman, D., & Condie, L. O. (2017).
Psychological evaluations for the courts: A handbook for mental health professionals and lawyers. New York: The Guilford Press. Retrieved from
Morris, D. R., & DeYoung, N. J. (2012). Psychological abilities and restoration of competence to stand trial.
Behavioral Sciences and the Law, 30, 710–728.
Risk Assessment Approaches (Forensic Psychology) – iResearchNet. (2015). Retrieved from
What You Need to Know About Child Custody Evaluations. (2020). Retrieved from
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