The FOX 8 I-Team has found the interim head of the Cuyahoga County Court Psych Clinic does not have a license to practice psychology in Ohio.
Julian Dooley earns $100,306 a year, and he was appointed interim director last July.
Judges send suspects in criminal cases to the clinic to get checked for competency to stand trial and for sanity at the time of the crime. Last year, the clinic handled more than 3,000 evaluations.
But the I-Team found, according to the state, Dooley has never had a license to practice psychology in Ohio.
We approached him in the Justice Center, and he immediately said, “I’m not talking to you.”
Court officials refused to answer questions on camera also. By email, Administrative Judge John Russo wrote, “The Court has been aware of Dr. Julian Dooley`s licensure status since the commencement of his employment with the Court.”
The Court also wrote, a licensed psychologist reviews Dooley’s evaluations, and clients are told of his status. Judge Russo added, “This complies with Ohio`s legal, regulatory, and ethical requirements."
But in other words, Dooley gets paid to run the clinic, yet someone else has to review his work.
The mother of Alianna DeFreeze is watching the trial now of the man charged with killing her daughter. When we brought our findings about the Psych Clinic to Donnesha Cooper, she said, “It’s a little concerning.” She hopes questions about the Psych Clinic don’t lead to appeals in cases later. Cooper added, "All it takes is one little thing to reopen it, and it makes it difficult."
Again, the court is confident proper protocol is being followed. Nonetheless, the court is having an independent review done. The findings should be available within a week.
As we questioned Dooley, we followed him to a private court elevator. He threatened to call sheriff’s deputies on us for following him there asking questions.