Family Court Therapist Janelle Burrill Charged with Misconduct by Attorney General's Office

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The California Board of Behavioral Science and California Attorney General's office have filed formal accusations of misconduct against a Sacramento family-court therapist.

The therapist, Janelle Burrill, is a clinical social worker who works with children and parents as ordered by family courts in Sacramento and elsewhere. Burrill has been the subject of multiple complaints by families unhappy with her work.

Documents filed against her by the Behavioral Sciences board and the office of Attorney General Kamala Harris allege that Burrill "committed acts that fall sufficiently below the standard of conduct of the profession as to constitute acts of gross negligence."

The documents assert that Burrill lied to both the American Board of Examiners for Clinical Social Workers and to a Placer County judge, claiming in both cases that no formal complaints had been filed against her by clients when she knew otherwise. If the accusations are upheld, her social-worker license could be suspended or revoked.

Burrill has been a lightning rod for criticism in Sacramento, and is only one of numerous family-court officials who have come under scrutiny for faulty and potentially dangerous practices in child-custody proceedings. Last month, SF Weekly published a story detailing multiple instances in which family courts had delivered children into the custody of parents with convictions for child molestation or spousal battery.

Kathleen Russell of the Center for Judicial Excellence, a family-court reform group, said Burrill should be removed from cases in which parents or children have concerns while the case against her proceeds.

"It seems prudent for the Courts to remove her from any case in which she is involved, at the request of either parent or child, to ensure the safety and well-being of the families and children they serve," Russell said in a statement. "And major policy reforms are needed to ensure a more timely resolution of these complaints."

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37 comments
belencorina14
belencorina14

My fight is not over with this lady.She believes she's done fighting?I have yet to begin.Years ago an arresting officer stated "rough consentual sex"...and she stated "no evidence of d.v."...I had reports showing evidence that there was d.v. and police photos.what these two did to me and my credibility and trust in the system has taken a toll on me.But I'm not broken...My fight is about to begin

JusticeSeeker
JusticeSeeker

Judge Sharen Lueras stated in court on 01/11/2012 that the court did not want to scrutinize court mediators because she stated mediators could then not do their jobs. She then declined to give the AG permission to use the Burrill report for the BBS administrative hearing to protect the public, even though the report was not adopted, was not confidential (Burrill had provided the report to the AG and it was repeatedly attached to the father's declarations in a public area of the case file), and the mother requested (as the minor's sole physical and legal guardian) that the AG be able to use the report. Basically, Burrill had judicial immunity and the court was protecting her (since her actions were done on the court's behalf). Burrill has friends in high places and behaves as though she is above the law. With the court protecting her, the BBS via the AG could not/would not discipline their licensee even after extensive investigation, expert review, and actionable cause. Karen Denvir said there would be very high profile discussions to remedy this situation. The mother asked to be included in those discussions or be informed of the outcome, but her request was ignored.

 

The only recourse is to change the law, so that is what I believe the next course of action should be.   

 

The judge made her misguided decision after Burrill's attorney, Ed Friedberg, argued on her behalf. Burrill was not party to the case, so she was not supoenaed (and didn't need to be). Burrill and Friedberg showed up to argue because the father, Damon R. Knox, had a special relationship with Burrill and immediately notified her when Karen Denvir sent information to him. If he had cared about the child, he would have been angry that Burrill was physically and emotionally abusive to the child and ruined his chance to reunify with her. As it stood, he paid her for a fictitious report, so if she were implicated, he would have been too, so they protected each other.

Kts911
Kts911

or some way to get involved in the AG complaint?

Thanks

Kts911
Kts911

All:

Is there a formal complain number for the AG complaint? 

Rpm_racer32
Rpm_racer32

Janelle Burrill ruined my childhood, took me from my loving mother and made me live with my father and abusive stepmom and thought it would be ok. She needs to lose her job and license and never be allowed to work with families again. 

Edienorth531
Edienorth531

I still need help in S CA. Dr. Harshman has ruined my family & gotten away with it.  He was grossly negligent and gotten away with it.  Please, if anyone has been abused by him, speak up.  Thank you.

Accuracyplease
Accuracyplease

To:  SR:  Interestingly, state records show Burrill's  license was set to expire July 21, 2006.  So if she practiced after that.....that would be well, not a surprise to those who know her.

SR
SR

I only wish it could be made a matter of public record just how many complaints were filed on her before any action was taken. I have been watching this closely (my case was one of the top few) for over two years, and she is still practicing.

Meowhiss
Meowhiss

I almost fell victim to Burrill but was fortunate to find a great attorney before it was too late.  Family members helped me out financially. Now what about all her victims  who did not have an attorney worth a dam or the money to retain one? What about the children who were victimized by this woman, who is going to pay for that?!?! Oh, that is what they call "falling through the cracks" or even the "price we pay due to cutbacks".

Burill should be locked up yet I doubt she will ever be punished on this earth. Unfortunately justice will come to this woman only in the end as even she will die and go before God. Then what about from this day forward? What do we need to do to prevent this form happening again? Yes boys and girls we need to reevaluate our family court system. Let start by obeying and following the US Constitution. The injustices of Family Court are just a taste of what it will be like if we abandon our Constitution.

Janelle Burrill BUSTED
Janelle Burrill BUSTED

What are the specific causes in the March 17 2011 BBS accusation against Janelle Lee Burrill ? Commission of Dishonest, corrupt or fraudulent acts substantially related to the qualifications, functions or duties of a licensee. Committed acts that fall sufficiently below the standard of conduct of the profession as to constitute acts of gross negligence.

News about Janelle Burrill

http://www.associatedcontent.c...

http://www.allvoices.com/users...

Janelle Burrill is not a member of the California State Bar http://members.calbar.ca.gov/f...

Janelle Burrill is not a licensed psychologist http://www2.dca.ca.gov/pls/wll...

Janelle Burrill is not a Board Certified Diplomate, It was revoked http://www.abecsw.org/pub-revo...

Look at her public resume, true lies http://www.forensicpsychology....

Count me out
Count me out

This entire series is a Center for Judicial Excellence press release. And in the March 2nd article, Kathleen applauded Peter Jamison (i.e, herself, basically) and said she believes the journalism deserves an award.

How bold, and brave, CJE is to say Burrill should be removed (like no one else has said that?) Talk about jumping on others' situations and then taking credit for them....

For every Burrill, there are several in waiting. It's not about personalities! It's about systems!

stop abusers
stop abusers

I would go one step further and say that Burrill should not be allowed to do any more evaluations until the charges are adjudicated and she should be removed from present cases regardless of whether the parent or child requests it. Often they do not know how biased evaluators are until AFTER the final report because evaluators very commonly lead you to believe they are on your side until it is too late.

Angel Phoenix
Angel Phoenix

It would be great if these people would publicly display their credentials, affiliations, education, experience, cases, etc. but they won't even answer simple questions and if you ask they become offended. It is about equivalent to when you ask one of them or a lawyer if you can record the conversation and they become indignant and offended that you asked such an invasive question. (in my case I have severe ADD and it affects my comprehension and listening skills when I am stressed out-custody is a stressful event-so using my recorder helps me to recall whatever the person said and also eliminates second guessing. In this day and age I would think it would be mandatory and protect both sides from any miscommunications). I have been misquoted much by shrinks and when I got ahold of my records I was really pissed to read what they wrote because I have to question why they even take up space if they are not going to do their jobs accurately. When they misinterpret or record things you said wrongly in a report this follows the person and can be damaging and traumatizing for the client so recording the conversation only protects a party when they risk being exploited by the system. If they get defensive over being recorded then they have something to hide and it's called LIES. It's the best way to cover your ass and protect yourself when they try to slander/libel you with legal or rather court order appointed permission.

Liora Tziporah Farkovitz
Liora Tziporah Farkovitz

Here's my question. How much money has this woman been paid by the State of California, the counties she works in and/or in federal dollars as part of her court appointments? What professional organizations is she a member of, and what, if any, "Father's Rights" organization affiliations has she maintained over the years? Has she ever provided and/or received payment for training of other father's rights proponents? Of the judges appointing her in cases, do they routinely ignore the concerns and requests for investigation of child abuse, sexual abuse, or domestic violence? Is there a disproportionate number of families whose issues of violence are ignored?

We spend entirely too much time talking about the injustice of the situation. Meanwhile, judges utilize a wide berth of discretion within the Family Courts. They are unaccountable until they step into administrative processes. Constitutionally, U.S. Citizens, including women and their children have a right to EQUAL ACCESS to the courts. If it is true that the DHHS has supplied billions of dollars in funding under the guise of "responsible fatherhood programs" which actually pay for services for attorneys, attorneys representing the "best interests" of children (called various things in various states), mediators, and therapists like Janelle Burrill then mothers have been denied equal access, and lied to by the courts besides. What's happening in the courts is formulaic ( If a, then (b+c+d+e+f) x 5(federally funded programs) = Abused Children are Unprotected By the State). There's a clearly identifiable system in place, and there are a lot of people, making a lot of money from federally funded programs while families are being torn apart and their assets are distributed on the courthouse steps.

Magraythomas
Magraythomas

Thats good news now its time for the Board of Behavioral Science to look in to / Investigate Diane Herrigton and HILDA A. CHALGUJIAN ( PHD ) and complaints on Michael C. Leitman ( PH.D ) For Misconduct ETC , INDIO Superior court of Riverside PH.D and Psycholoical Services provided by the Three Individuals mention.

LT
LT

AMEN!

Defmos333
Defmos333

Dont worry there are many that like you are finding ways to ensure he will not get way with the lives he has tried and in some cases effectivly ruined!

Teegolfer
Teegolfer

I only have positive things to say about Dr Harshman. Dr Harshman has always acted professional and fair during the time my family dealt with him

SR
SR

It may be that I just haven't had my coffee yet this morning, but I do not understand your reply. As I understand it her license renewal was approved; if I missed something could you please fill me in?

Count You Out- Gladly!
Count You Out- Gladly!

Anne Stevenson- your incessant complaints about the center for judicial excellence and kathleen russell are petty and annoying. Get over it. Your axe to grind is self-created. The Center for Judicial Excellence is doing excellent work, and they have been working with mothers and fathers victimized by Burrill since long before you entered this world in January 2011.

Rpm_racer32
Rpm_racer32

this lady tore my family apart, i think she got paid off by my father, i have all the papers from all the appointments from when i was younger and everything i said about my father and stepmother is incorrect, she made it seem like i loved them but didnt, stepmom is an abusive woman but in her report i "loved" her. My mom told nothing but the truth and everything this lady wrote down was a lie!

Count me out
Count me out

Mothers have been blogging and complaining about this person for years (I am unfamiliar with cases she evaluated). I came here to point this out, but you said it better.

"Mile High Emotions" don't do much but generate more mile-high emotions (the term 'tornado" comes to mind).

Cold Hard Facts - in the form of $$ by court-appointed, court-paid attorneys with conflicts of interests in the cases they are dealing with is another thing.

Center for Judicial Excellence could' have recommended, and done such background checks at any point in time, on key individuals, but instead to go with the mile high emotions = more PR = positioning self to sit on panels to reform the courts { a different formula).

Doing anything about Burrill is tossing a bone to the crowds, and doesn't affect the system at all. I think i'm going to look up her vendor payments and see if she could've been caught before damaging all those parents.

There will be no end to more marketing niches for court professionals (outsourcing the judicial process) until these practices are stopped. The complaints about the courts are overwhelmed and underfunded? -- How many of these cases would've been to court just a few times, and then COMPLETED if it hadn't been for the presence of the carpet-bagging therapits, evaluators, etc. Probably the current generation of parents are messed up in good part by mistreatment by these same courts when their own parents came through!

Angel Phoenix
Angel Phoenix

It would be great if these people would publicly display their credentials, affiliations, education, experience, cases, etc. but they won't even answer simple questions and if you ask they become offended. It is about equivalent to when you ask one of them or a lawyer if you can record the conversation and they become indignant and offended that you asked such an invasive question. (in my case I have severe ADD and it affects my comprehension and listening skills when I am stressed out-custody is a stressful event-so using my recorder helps me to recall whatever the person said and also eliminates second guessing. In this day and age I would think it would be mandatory and protect both sides from any miscommunications). I have been misquoted much by shrinks and when I got ahold of my records I was really pissed to read what they wrote because I have to question why they even take up space if they are not going to do their jobs accurately. When they misinterpret or record things you said wrongly in a report this follows the person and can be damaging and traumatizing for the client so recording the conversation only protects a party when they risk being exploited by the system. If they get defensive over being recorded then they have something to hide and it's called LIES. It's the best way to cover your ass and protect yourself when they try to slander/libel you with legal or rather court order appointed permission.

Never Give Up
Never Give Up

Dr. Kay Bathurst [Evaluator]Angela Bissada, Ph.D.Dr. Sidney J. BrownDr. Charles BrowningDuke Bussy Ph.D. [Evaluator] Dr. Gary A. Chase [Evaluator]Ana Couch Lynda Doi-Fick, MFTJudy Cole [Evaluator]JoAnn Feigin, LCSWLisa Hacker [Reunification Therapist, Therapist]Dr. Bruce Harshman [Therapist]Dr. Joe Kenan [Evaluator]Dr. King [Therapist]Dr. Mary LundDr. Jane MajorDr. Clinton Montgomery [Therapist]Dr. Fred Norris [Evaluator]Dr. Susan Rabin

Accuracyplease
Accuracyplease

I overslept and haven had my coffee yet either.   I would call the State.  When I earlier discovered another therapist's license had lapsed, he quickly corrected it.  It doesn't seem as if Burrill has.  But I would call the State for verification.  Oh my God...not awake yet and still making puns.  

Accuracyplease
Accuracyplease

Kathleen's Russell's so-called non-profit pays their donations to her pr staff. Ugh.

Edie
Edie

I need some help in Southern California.  Please tell me which lawyer to contact in order to join any class action suits against Dr.  Harshman 

Eidenorth531
Eidenorth531

@Never Give Up, @f5e96fbd0318483bc242e41d228830ed:disqus My family is currently being destroyed by Dr. Harshman. I need to talk to somebody. Can you contact me?

Edienorth531
Edienorth531

Defmos333,  How do I contact you?  TX, Edie

Edienorth531
Edienorth531

Sorry for your loss & your daughter's l@yahoo:disqus ss.  Amazing.  Here is my email address:  edienorth531@yahoo.com.  I check this blog every once in a while to see if anyone will respond.  I went to craigslist also.  Trying to get in touch.  Get back to me.  This is a fake name, btw.  We could be in touch through a parent group as an intermediary possibly. TX

Defmos333
Defmos333

contact me I will get you in touch with some people

Edienorth531
Edienorth531

I've been waiting for someone to reply.  This is amazing.  It sounds very similar to my experience.  Dr. H doesn't keep abreast of the case, doesn't care, forgets, has a giant ego... How can we get others & get a class action going?

Defmos333
Defmos333

Dr. Harshman said to me in private after being told by my then 7 year old daughter that she was being abused by my ex-husband, he said "so what"?

I then started to flip out on him and said what more proof do you need that he is an abuser?

He said to me..."I don't!!!" .....but "you need to know your place with me". Because "THE JUDGES ALWAYS DO WHAT I TELL THEM TO DO" So watch your tone with me".

I really started to freak out then and said" is't this only about the child and NOT about YOU and YOUR EGO?"

HE Kept up with this HIGH and MIGHTY BULLSHIT and I TRIED to have him taken off the case quoting ABOVE and of course the judge (MICHAEL LINFIELD) threw out my request but the verdict came back VERBATUM- BRUCE HARSHMAN'S RECOMMENDATION and GUESS WHO DID NOT GET CUSTODY - ME- because I CHALLENGED THAT PIG HARSHMAN IN PRIVACY and my Daughter suffered for it and will suffer the rest of her life emotionally because of Bruce Harshman. 

 I have the original Harshman notes with my daughters description of the abuse that we had to subpeona because Harshman did not include them in the report.

Rwerner
Rwerner

You destroyed your family, not Dr Harshman. Instead of blogging you should try working on your psycho issues.

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