Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Joel, A Patient of Dr. Ayres at Judge Baker in 1962, Speaks Out

Now that we've brought you a dozen or so of Ayres' medical colleagues from Judge Baker Guidance Center in Boston who say that his old story about being trained to give physicals is a load of crock, today we'd like to share a conversation we had with Joel, one of Ayres' former patients at Judge Baker. Joel grew up in Massachusetts and he saw Ayres at Judge Baker when he was 17 years old in 1962 . Today he is 64 years old and lives in Florida.

Joel gave us permission to go ahead and publish our conversation-- "any way I can assist to put that sociopath behind bars," he said. Here's Joel's memory of his "therapy" with Dr. Ayres:

"When I was 17, I didn't want to go to college. My parents wanted to find out why I didn't like school, so they sought out the best place around, which was Judge Baker. Well, a very simple, #1 question from Dr. Ayres should have been, 'Tell me why you don't like school." I saw him for many sessions and that question was NEVER asked. Not once.

The very first session I had with Dr. Ayres, he said, "Do you know what a blow job is?"

As a 17 year old, I was not too street smart, and I tried to rationalize that odd question that maybe he was trying to figure out how mature I was. He asked me if I masturbated.

I saw him many times. He always asked about sexual things. Everything was of a sexual nature.
In all those sessions he never asked me once why I didn't want to go to school, or about my parents, or my feelings. All of his questions were of a sexual nature.

When he wasn't asking me sexual things, he would sit behind his desk and smoke a pipe and look bored. Sometimes 15 minutes would go by before he said a word. Finally one day I asked
him, "Why don't you ask me why I don't like school?." He hardly ever talked but the things he did say were always sexual . I couldn't wait til the 55 minutes was up.

I remember he left Judge Baker abruptly. He told me he was going to San Mateo in California and gave me his number and address if I ever needed his help. But he never helped me at all.

He didn't molest me [editor's note: At 17, Joel was well past Ayres' target age] If he had tried to touch me I would have killed him.

The whole experience was very strange and I never understood it.... 'til now. Recently I was going through some old papers I had from Boston and I found Ayres' name and address that he had given me when he left Judge Baker. I decided to look him up on the internet to find out what happened to him. After reading all the articles about the molestation I now understand why all of his questions and treatment were of a sexual nature.

I guess the only effect it ever had (not being aware of this til now) was to never seek out a psychiatrist or a psychologist for any problems I've had in my 64 years. Nothing ever major but at times I could have used some private professional help in figuring out some of life's boondoggles."

Finally, Joel urged those at the William Ayres blog and its followers to "Keep on keepin' on... Bring some justice to those whose lives he's ruined. "

Post script: After our conversation with Joel, we conducted an informal survey among other child psychiatrists, some of them Judge Baker-trained, as to whether they'd ever used Ayres' line "Do you know what a blow job is? " line with their young male patients in the very first session. The answer was a horrified, universal NO. Said one child psychiatrist who'd trained at Judge Baker, " I bet Ayres' supervisors had no idea he was saying that. That sort of thing was not acceptable."

We also had the opportunity to recount Joel's story to the esteemed Dr. Paul Fink, a past President of the American Psychiatric Association. Dr. Fink knew Ayres professionally. Upon hearing Joel's story, Dr. Fink just shook his head sadly and said that it pained him that Ayres had never conducted any therapy with his patients. We could tell that Fink was upset that he'd been duped by Ayres all these years.

Friday, September 25, 2009

My Intolerant Musings on Psychiatry

Now that I’m looking back at everything, I begin realize that it's a huge problem that shrinks are just people too, and that they have their own hang-ups that really make it dangerous for them to be messing about with other people's minds: using various unproven psychological "theory" to "treat" people for aberrational (or maybe even normal) mental functioning that they really don't understand that well in the first place.

Think about the example of Larry Lurie, who we have discussed here before.  (Apart from his transmission and undersigning of the ayres money grubbing letter, I have no idea whether he's normal or creepy, or what…) I have emphasized some of his words for the purposes of our discussion:
"I have not brought any sculptures into my office, although I have had to fight that impulse many times," he said. "My sense is that my sculptures would be an intrusion into my patients’ lives and the issue for which they come to the office. It would be about me and not them[...]"

-From PsychiatryOnline.Org
Perhaps it seems petty to focus on this, and maybe overbearing, but it really IS the problem.

Larry is human, and is craving recognition for that of which he is proud. He even has CLARITY that his desire to bring his personal accomplishments into the therapy setting with his patients crosses the boundaries of a professional relationship, AND YET the impulse is SO STRONG to be recognized, that he blabs about it in a magazine article. The problem is not that he talked about it... the problem is that the IMPULSE is there: unavoidable, and so strong that ultimately it presents itself as unstoppable, even for such a seemingly minor impulse.

Does Larry have to shut up about his personal life just because he’s a shrink? I don’t know; maybe not… It probably would have been wiser for him to let his exuberance about his sculpting talent explode in “Sculpting Weekly” rather than in a professional psychiatry journal…  (Sometimes a cigar... well… never mind.)

What impulses do shrinks have that WILL cause them cross that boundary?

According to an article in “Annals” from the American Psychotherapy Association:  “The AMA reports that in the psychiatric specialty between five and ten percent of psychiatrists have had sexual contact with at least one patient, based on self-reporting studies.”

Maybe it’s just as simple as a shrink getting tired of a patient’s silly little problems some days, and they blow the patient off in a way that makes the patient feel more damaged, adding years to the time that they need to allow the pain to wash away. Someone who is a PROFESSIONAL, who would hope to do ACTUAL healing, should NOT SHOW ANY such impulses, and should be in TOTAL CONTROL of themselves at ALL times, which is simply not possible, even for the most altruistic human.

I think that it's possible that there ARE good shrinks out there, but I think the actual number of mostly stable personalities who ALSO are shrinks is probably relatively small.

I think when people have psychological damage, there are only two things that actually repair the damage:  Action resulting in immediate positive feedback/re-enforcement at the time of damage,  and/or  LOTS of time to allow the brain to hash out the anger and disappointment. I think it's almost impossible for a shrink to provide either of those. Perhaps a VERY good one could help to guide the hashing out process over many, many years. Drugs and eleven sessions won’t even scratch the surface.

I went to a shrink who was not horrible after college (If I recollect correctly, he never did ask me how often I masturbate, nor did he ask me to describe it for him. And I'm almost positive that he didn't ask it nearly every damned week.):

He never did figure out that there was some deep-seated stuff there though; and I was too afraid to bring the subject up, even though it was always right there at the beginning and end of every appointment.  I don't think he did any real additional psychological damage. (Other than maybe re-enforcing my opinion about shrinks.) He had a Persian rug with a cool geometric design that I really lost myself in while I was avoiding bringing up anything of import.

I think it's important for a good shrink to have a cool, intricate feature in his or her office that the patient can study intensely while no one is discussing the real problem.  Perhaps Larry's sculptures would be good in other doctor’s offices.  (Well… except, of course, that Larry’s sculptures appear to be mostly nude, which might be problematic for some…)

By the way: this post was inspired by an email exchange with a friend. Thank you to that friend!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Upcoming Dates of Interest

[Original post date: 09/18/09 6:00am PST]

There are several upcoming dates of interest related to the william ayres child molestation case:

UPDATE: Friday, September 25th 2:30pm: Victoria has received her Award for Excellence in the Media for meritorious public service. She received a standing ovation. 
My congratulations and thanks go to Victoria. It is very important to have someone from the "outside" who understands, believes in, and advocates for the victims of this kind of insidious and damaging crime. I'm sure that the people who are responsible for presenting this award understand the significance of this quite clearly, and they couldn't have picked a better candidate for the award!

UPDATE: Friday, September 25th: There is an article in the San Mateo County Times about Victoria's Award. I think she receives the award at the lunchtime awards ceremony today! Congrats again to Victoria!

TODAY: Friday, September 25th 2009:  Victoria Balfour, the journalist who, through her persistence after learning that a colleague was molested as a child by william ayres, focused a strong spotlight on the ayres case, will be receiving an Award for Excellence in the Media for meritorious public service. Read more about the award here. The Mills-Peninsula Health Services Lawsuit Watch blog has also posted an article on this award, and so has forensicpsychologist.blogspot.com

Friday, October 9th 2009:  The THIRD attempt to set a date for the retrial of william ayres on charges related to the child molestation of young males who were entrusted to his "medical" care. The date selection hearing was originally secheduled on 8/28/2009, and was continued to 9/11/2009 by ayres' then legal representation Doron Weinberg. And then, on September 11th, ayres new lawyer John Boy McDougall  (who has an odd little website here) wanted a continuance of 4 to 6 weeks with the obvious intent to ask for another continuation later. The next opportunity for yet another continuance occurs on October 9th.
Superior Court Clerk's office: 650-599-1170
ayres' criminal case number: SC064366

Friday, October 28th 2009: Case Management hearing for four of the civil cases against ayres for charges including and relating to child molestation, and fraud perpetrated in the guise of providing "medical care" with the intent to molest: CIV467273, CIV467741, CIV467742, CIV467743 

(NOTE: there is a glitch with the court document links, and you may have to click on one of those links AGAIN after the first click results in a blank page. They should work after that. NOTE ALSO that those case information pages have some Acrobat files attached with additional detail. See the links on the right-hand side under the "Image" column.) 
Superior Court Civil Division: 650-363-4576 

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

New Article Tonight about Victoria Balfour

There's a REALLY well written article on Victoria Balfour's upcoming Award for Excellence in the Media for meritorious public service over at Patient Advocate's Mills-Peninsula Health Services Lawsuit Watch Blog.

Great job on the article Patient Advocate! And once more, Congrats to Victoria Balfour!

The award is given annually by the Institute of Violence, Abuse, and Trauma and the Leadership Council on Child Abuse & Interpersonal Violence.

Avast! Thar be a blog makeover!

In honour of  the upcomin' merry hour: Talk Like a Pirate Day on September 19th, we be givin' the blog the 'ole heave to!

What's all this got to do with Pirates ye ask?
Have I lived this many years, and a son of a rum puncheon cock his hat athwart my hawse at the latter end of it?


Hope ye like the new looks matey.
By the way, I fixed a bunch of old expired links on the right side toolbar. Very sad that the articles in the newspapers have long since gone to archive, and there's still no resolution.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Ayres' Sex Ed Series: The "Male" Episode

"Our series is set in a framework of morality." - Dr. William Ayres on his controversial sex education program for nine year olds, the New York Times, April 13, 1969.

"Our only disagreement is on the depth he went into masturbation and the details of human intimacy." -Arnim Weems, Assistant San Mateo County Superintendent of Schools, The San Francisco Chronicle, August 21, 1968

Back in 2006, about a year before Ayres was arrested, we happened to be speaking to a San Mateo child psychiatrist who dropped what we considered bombshell information; in the 1960's Ayres had his own sex education television series for little kids on KQED in San Francisco. This came as a shock to us, because when Ayres had been deposed for his first molestation civil suit in 2004, he didn't mention his sex ed series. Not a peep. He did not forget to mention, however, every last tiny little office he has ever held for every last association for the last thirty years. (Does anyone but Ayres really care that he was once upon a time the treasurer for the Northern California Regional Organization of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry?)Gee, we wondered, now, why wouldn't Ayres bring up his sex ed series to the victim's civil lawyer ? Could it be because there might be something he didn't want us to know about the series?

Friday, September 11, 2009

Details of Today's hearing

[Original post date: 09/11/09 10:40am PST]

Events today at the Hearing to set a re-trial date for william hamilton ayres for charges relating to the molestation of many young male children:

Most of my “quotes” in this will be close to verbatim, or a very near paraphrase. I was writing very quickly; my fingers still hurt.

There were three people present known to support the victims, including one juror from the first trial. There were two other people present, and appeared to be possibly reporters. One of the supporters had a bit of a conversation with ayres after the hearing. We will tell you a BIT about that BRIEFLY later today, but will not get into any detail, unless that person wants to tell the story from their perspective.

As of 8:36AM, ayres and his wife Solveig were already waiting on a bench around the corner from the courtroom. Ayres has a new walker. It is the sporty model with a seat and four large castor wheels to allow him to zip around between court engagements.

At right around 9am, the Judge entered, and Defense attorney Jonathan  McDougall introduced himself as ayres’ “substitute” representation, and declared that all of the appropriate signatures from ayres, Weinberg, and McKowan were on file. McDugall is a former DA, and his personality is somewhat brash, a bit chatty, and seems like he’ll be prone to interrupt at will. He claimed to not have come very much up to speed yet, and that he had had “Brief discussions” with both Weinberg and McKowan, but not much more than that, and then with a bit of a complaining demeanor exclaimed that his “investigator had picked up six boxes of material” relating to the trial. I wonder if those boxes included some reading material? Perhaps a picture book or two for him to peruse whilst enjoying an evening at home.

[Update 9/11/09 5:30pm NOTE: There has been some confusion created by the San Mateo County Times. Earlier today, they reported that McDougall was not paid for by ayres, that he had accepted [the San Mateo county equivalent of] a "public defender." They have since changed their article, and it now reads: 
"Ayres has retained McDougall, which means the doctor is paying the attorney to defend him"
They have further confused the matter by posting the ORIGINAL article here at a later time yesterday evening. (but not later than the latest update at the original site.) I think that the most current reporting, that ayres has RETAINED McDougall is probably correct, but still, this seems to me to be the type of detail that would be difficult to report incorrectly.] [Further Update, 9/12/2009: As of 2:12pm PST, they have updated the site, and it now matches the Mercury News posting, and the first one that I linked to (contracostatimes) appears to no longer be working. To wit: According to their research, ayres IS PAYING for his new representation.]

McDougall wanted a four to six week continuance to try to come up to speed before they start talking about setting a date.

He promptly (and brashly) asked for a trial date of April with a “February readiness hearing.”  You could feel the litany of excuses about coming up-to-speed welling up over on his side of the courtroom, and they started to spill out, but the Judge interrupted him.

“This trial is about ayres, not about you.” The Judge stated that she did NOT think April is a reasonable date, and that the court is NOT obliged to allow the defense to come up to speed [to the extent of an entirely new investigation], in this case especially, as it is a retrial, and it was NOT the court’s decision to change representation mid-stream. She stated that he should NOT have to start the investigation all over again, and implied that his come-up-to-speed time should be MINIMAL, and that anything otherwise was unreasonable.

McDougall then stated that he felt that under the case law, Weinberg’s strategy was not necessarily appropriate. (The implication that he may indeed need to start the investigation all over again. And employ a better strategy.)

Judge Freeman interrupted him again and said: that his “Request for a readiness conference in February suggests to me that you are ALREADY PLANNING a continuance.  She then asked for McKowan’s input.

McKowan stated that she DOES want to have a “FIRM DATE TODAY,” and she said that she does agree that McDougall should have SOME time to come up to speed, but that she NEEDS TO SET A DATE TODAY.

Judge Freeman indicated concern that if she sets a date today, that McDougall will come back and say that it was not a date that he agreed upon.  She suggested that she was willing to continue the decision on a court date until as late as October 2nd, and that she would expect him to come in at that point with a firm and reasonable request for a trial date.

McDougall: “I don’t know if I will be ready in a month to pick a date that I’ll be ready.”

Judge Freeman then tossed out October 9 as a date, stating that date was in line with the four to six weeks that he had requested.  She said “I will expect by that time you will be able to map out a strategy that gets [you a good date.]”

Judge Freeman warned McDougall that she can NOT postpone the October 9th date, and that if he needs to change it, he will have to call the court very early so that the new date can be scheduled to occur BEFORE October 9th. She also told him that she expects to have a reasonable estimate for the amount of time he will require for the trial.

In all, it was not an overly surprising day.  The DA clearly wanted a firm date, but as usual, the court seems to have its hands tied with the delay tactics for which ayres’ representation is so skilled.

It did seem that the Judge is aware that the ENTIRE strategy of the defense at this point is to delay and continue until a time when either everyone forgets what the trial is about, or ayres is dead, and that THAT’s the expertise that ayres is paying for. She seemed to be not as willing to put up with the nonsense, and clearly gave the impression she thinks that setting a trial date as late as APRIL is fantastically unbelievable nonsense.

[Update: September 11, 2009, 9:30pm PST]:
After the hearing was finished, a small group of us were standing outside discussing various aspects of the justice system,  when ayres went scooting by over to the place where he waits for his wife to come pick him up after one of the plethora of court appearances he makes.

It is fairly well documented that ayres and Solveig both enjoy approaching victims and their families and friends and greeting them cheerfully, asking them if they’re Scientologists, or other even more bizarre questions. One of our group was greeted cheerfully by ayres, and she decided that she’d take him up on his conversational opener, and went over to talk to him.

The conversation was not surprisingly pretty off-axis.  Our understanding is that she asked him questions relating to how it is that he could engage in such behaviors, and he kept replying something to the effect of: “I’m a psychiatrist.” After awhile he began to move away from her, and asked her to stop talking to him.  Everyone agreed that this was odd, since he was the one who approached her, with a friendly greeting.  Soon Solveig arrived with the vehicle, and got out to see what was going on. Even with the dark sunglasses, she is capable of exuding an attitude of vapid confusion, with just a hint of malice. Must be all that theatre experience.

Ayres then saw a San Mateo Sheriff’s Deputy walking by, and frantically started to flag him down. “Help, Help, There’s a WOMAN talking to me!” was written all over the desperate look on his face.  The Deputy gave him one of those “Get a life” looks, and at that point, our conversationalist friend began to walk away, and ayres gestured to the Deputy that everything was OK now, the woman wasn’t going to hurt him. The Deputy looked way and rolled his eyes.

Our conversationalist friend seems to be one of those people who live for the moment, grabbing the bull by the horns at every opportunity.

I have to admit that for me, today, the hearing ended with an exuberant laugh.

It’s a good thing. 

Also wanted to mention that Trials & Tribulations also had some commentary on our hearing today!

Trial date selection continued until Oct 9.

New defense attorney is Johnathon McDugall. (probably messed up spelling) Former DA, Seems like an under-the-radar type.

September 11

September 11

My prayers to the victims, their families and friends, and everyone else who was, and still is affected by the events of 8 years ago today.

Ayres Re-Trial Hearing Today:
FRIDAY, September 11th, 2009, 9am PST
Hearing is to set the date for the re-trial of  Dr. William Hamilton Ayres MD, Accused of molesting children who were entrusted to his medical care.

The hearing will probably be very brief. I am expecting to hear mostly disappointing news, probably involving further delay tactics, and possibly change in defense representation. Perhaps it is just the pall that September 11th holds. Perhaps it is more than that...

Southern Branch: Hall of Justice and Records
400 County Center,
Redwood City, CA 94063

Superior Court Clerk's office: 650-599-1170

ayres' criminal case number: SC064366

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Hearing Tomorrow: September 11th, 2009

FRIDAY, September 11th, 2009, 9am PST
Date and time confirmed as of today. (9/10/2009)

UPDATE: New post in Judge Baker series today: immediately below this one!

Hearing is to set the date for the re-trial of  Dr. William Hamilton Ayres MD, Accused of molesting children who were entrusted to his medical care. Will probably be very brief.

Southern Branch: Hall of Justice and Records
400 County Center,
Redwood City, CA 94063

Superior Court Clerk's office: 650-599-1170

ayres' criminal case number: SC064366

Judge Baker-Trained Dr. David Reiser:"Giving A Physical To A Child In Therapy is Like Having A Priest Do Physical Exams On People Who Get Confession."

Today, in our ongoing series of interviews with child psychiatrists who trained at Judge Baker Guidance Center in Boston, we bring you Dr David Reiser. Dr. Reiser is 83 and lives in Utah, where he is that state's only psychoanalyst. Reiser is not the type to brag about his career, and so he was a bit bashful when we said that we'd seen him mentioned in a 1979 essay in the New Yorker magazine.

Dr. Reiser told us that after graduating from medical school at the University of Utah, he came east to train at Judge Baker in 1954. He was there for two years. At the time, he said, Judge Baker was the preeminent training ground for child psychiatrists in this country.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Dr. Richard Hinkley Wolff Who Trained with Ayres at Judge Baker: " I Never Heard of ANYONE Doing Physicals There."

We have a copy of the October 27, 2004, deposition by Dr. William Ayres in the molestation civil suit filed by victim Steve A. We invite you to get your hands on a copy, because there's lots of good stuff in there.

For example:

Here's what Ayres had to say about his training at Judge Baker then: "And we had to attend lots of conferences, some of which were didactic to learn about various things. And we were - so we were exposed to a lot of what was then current, you know, child psychiatric. "

If Ayres was exposed to what was current in the 1960's at the most pre-eminent place for child psychiatry in the country, he would have learned that physicals to children in therapy were verboten at Judge Baker. According to Dr. Lee Willer and Dr. Joan Zilbach, who trained with him there, child psychiatrists were advised NOT to touch children in therapy.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Upcoming Hearings

IMPORTANT:Hearing This FRIDAY, September 11th, 2009, 9am PST:
To set the date for the re-trial of  Dr. William Hamilton Ayres MD, Accused of molesting children who were entrusted to his medical care. (In case you had NOT heard, the DA WILL be re-trying the case, which ended in mistrial.)
ALSO OF NOTE: Today, Wednesday, September 9: New entry in Trapellar's East Coast Training Series of interviews. (See post immediately below this one)
AND: If you're a fan of Watch Dog San Mateo, their normal site got poached by an unscrupulous internet fiend, so they can be found here temporarily: watchdogsanmateo.blogspot.com

Southern Branch: Hall of Justice and Records
400 County Center,
Redwood City, CA 94063

Superior Court Clerk's office: 650-599-1170
ayres' criminal case number: SC064366

Also a reminder of other upcoming ayres hearing dates for your planner:
October 28th, 2009 will be another case management hearing for four of the civil cases against ayres for charges including and relating to child molestation, and fraud perpetrated in the guise of providing "medical care" with the intent to molest: CIV467273, CIV467741, CIV467742, CIV467743

The mainstream press is rarely (if ever) at these hearings. Usually they're brief hearings, but we find it to be disappointing that in all of the (mostly limited) press coverage that the criminal trial gets, they generally fail to mention that there are several pending civil lawsuits in process as well, and I don't think I've EVER seen any information about the status of those cases. The cases DO have "John Doe" listed as the defendant, but if you show up, it will be clear who he is. The laundry list of charges is fascinating, as will be the names of the other "John Does" if they are ever revealed.

(NOTE: there is a glitch with the court document links, and you may have to click on one of those links AGAIN after the first click results in a blank page. They should work after that. NOTE ALSO that those case information pages have some Acrobat files attached with additional detail. See the links on the right-hand side under the "Image" column.)

Friday, September 4, 2009

"Never, Never, Never, Did You Touch A Child in Therapy!" - Dr. Milton Shore, Former Staffer at Judge Baker in 60's

Today we had a most productive chat with child psychologist Dr. Milton Shore in Silver Spring, Maryland. Dr. Shore, who did his undergraduate studies at Harvard University, was on staff at Judge Baker from 1963- 1964 with two psychologists we've also spoken with -Dr. Irving Hurwitz and Dr. Nicholas Verven. During that period he worked on a special research unit at the Newton, Mass. public schools that was trying to get services for delinquent dropouts.This was his second stint at Judge Baker - he was a psychology student with a fellowship there in 1954-55.

Following Judge Baker, for 23 years Dr. Shore was on the staff of the National Institute of Mental Health and is the author of more than 200 publications. He is also a past president of the American Orthopsychiatric Association, an 80-year old membership association of mental health professionals concerned with mental health and social justice. In 1996 he was the recipient of the APA's Award for Distinguished Professional Contribution to Practice in the Public Sector. At 81, he is semi-retired but continuing to see a few patients.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Dr. Joan Zilbach, a Judge Baker Child Psychiatrist Who Worked With Ayres: Anyone Caught Doing a Physical Would Be in Big Trouble

Today we spoke briefly with child psychiatrist Dr. Joan "Jackie" Zilbach, who worked with William H Ayres at Judge Baker Guidance Center in 1963, where they were both assistant psychiatrists.

After Judge Baker, Dr. Zilbach, who according to her daughter Susana was one of only four women in her medical school class, went on to have a long and impressive career. Her research and articles on juvenile delinquents appeared in many medical books and journals, including the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.

Dr. Zilbach's health is not good, but after being briefed by her daughter Susana about the purpose of our call, Dr. Zilbach said that she would talk to us. Dr. Zilbach said she did remember Ayres. We then asked her a series of questions about the history of her psychiatric training.

This is what we learned from Dr. Zilbach:

- Neither she nor Ayres nor anyone else in their group was trained to give "physicals" at Judge Baker.

- No child psychiatrist was permitted to do physicals on children in therapy at Judge Baker

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Yess!!! Still More Judge Baker Guys Tell Us Ayres is All Wrong: "Any Hint That Any Therapist Would Be Doing Physicals Would Raise Serious Concerns"

We're still looking for someone who worked at Judge Baker Guidance Center in Boston when Ayres was there from 1959-1963, who can vouch that they too, were trained to physically examine children - make that boys - in therapy. But boy, is it ever hard.

We're having no luck at finding anyone who will vouch for Ayres. Just this week we talked to three more shrinks who trained at Judge Baker when Ayres was there, and they all said, emphatically, that Ayres is not telling the truth when he told the good citizens of San Mateo for four decades that Judge Baker taught their therapists to give regular physical exams in therapy.

Psychologist Nicholas Verven said he knew Ayres and Solveig, who was working at the time as a social worker at the Manville School on the Judge Baker campus.

Ayres and Children's Hospital in Boston: Did He Work There, Too?

[ORIGINAL POST DATE: 8/27/09 8:16 AM - Moved for visibility and continuity]

Today we have in front of us a bunch of listings of Ayres' employment history from various medical directories and American Medical Association listings. Maybe we're just slow, but we have to admit we're a tad confused by what we're reading. There are so many different variations of his work history as well as a couple of mystifying omissions and inclusions.

All of us who follow this blog know by now that Ayres did his child psychiatry residency at Judge Baker Guidance Center in Boston, from 1959-61. From 07-01-59 to 06-30-1961, to be exact.

But what's surprising to us is that according to online public records we found some years ago, Ayres was also almost simultaneously doing a residency at Children's Hospital in Boston, from 09-01-1959 to 08-31-1961.

Child Psychiatrist Who Trained With Ayres at Judge Baker: "We Were Advised NOT To Do Physicals in Therapy."

[ORIGINAL POST DATE: 8/25/09 11:39 AM - Moved for visibility and continuity]

Because Ayres has been telling everyone in San Mateo for over forty years that he was trained at Judge Baker to do regular physical exams on children in therapy, we've been hot on the trail of other Judge Baker-trained child psychiatrists to ask them whether this was in fact, true.

The reason we think this is so important? Jurors from the first trial have told us that a number of jurors actually believed Ayres when he said that he had been trained to do physicals during therapy back in the 1960s.

So what are the folks here at the Williamayreswatch to do?

Find someone out there who can back Ayres up, of course!!

Judge Baker-Trained Psychiatrist: Ayres' Claims That He Was Trained To Do "Physicals" is " A Dodge That Other Shrinks Who Are Molesting Kids Use"

[ORIGINAL POST DATE: 8/21/09 1:43 PM - Moved for visibility and continuity]

We just got off the phone with Gordon P. Harper MD, a child psychiatrist in Brookline, Massachusetts.

Dr. Harper graduated from Harvard Medical School in 1969. He
did his residency at Judge Baker Children's Center in the early 1970's.

He told us flat out that he was never trained at Judge Baker to give "physicals" to children in therapy. In fact, he said, "In my Judge Baker training, we didn't even do a neurological exam on children."

Dr. Harper says he has never known of any child psychiatrist who was trained to give regular physicals exams to children in therapy. He told us he's heard of other child psychiatrists who've molested kids who have used Ayres' line about being "trained" to give physicals to kids . "It's a dodge that other child psychiatrists use who are molesting children."

Thanks for the information, Dr. Harper.

Judge Baker's Chief Operating Officer: Ayres' Claims About His Training are "Absurd","Horrifying"

[ORIGINAL POST DATE: 8/20/09 1:58 PM - Moved for visibility and continuity]

One of our sources for this blog is in the thick of the Harvard/Cambridge psychiatrists' circuit. Recently this source gave us some very interesting - and potentially damaging information - given to them by a psychiatrist about Ayres' activities at Judge Baker Children's Center in the 1960's.

So, as we already just happened to be up in the Boston area this week, we decided to head up to Judge Baker and check out the place in person.

Just to give you a bit of background on the place, here is a description of Judge Baker Children's Center from its website:

Founded in 1917, Judge Baker Children's Center is a Harvard Medical School affiliate dedicated to improving the lives of children whose mental health problems threaten to limit their potential. Integrating education, service, research, and training, the Center is the oldest child mental health organization in New England and a national leader in the field of children's mental health.

Today, Judge Baker's Chief Operating Officer, Stephen Schaffer, took time out of his very, very busy schedule to meet with us. We thought he might be defensive but Schaffer turned out to be a lovely man who clearly cares deeply about the welfare of all children. We sat outside on a bench by a bronzed statue of a barefoot adolescent boy, lying on a bench and reading a book.

East Coast Child Psychiatrist: Touching Children in Therapy Was Forbidden. "At Yale We Were Taught Not To Put Even A Hand On the Shoulder of a Child."

[ORIGINAL POST DATE: 8/11/09 - Moved for visibility and continuity]

Ever since defense expert Dr. Gil Kliman rhapsodized about fancy East Coast medical schools on the witness stand, (and in the process somehow intimating that any child psychiatrist who trained there had received a far superior education), we've been dying to talk to more of those Ivy League child shrinks ourselves.

Specifically, we wanted to find a child psychiatrist who actually did his residency in child psychiatry at Yale. Dr. Ayres, as many of you know, did his residency at Yale. For years he's been trying to sort of give the impression to folks in San Mateo that he studied child psychiatry at Yale, but that is not so. In his first year of residency he studied pediatrics and then spent two years working in adult psychiatry. Part of that time involved working at a Veterans Hospital in Connecticut. How he learned about child psychiatry there sure is a puzzle to us!!

Today we tracked down a child psychiatrist who actually did do his residency in child psychiatry at the Yale New Haven Children Center. The person we found was child psychiatrist Dr. Morton Kurland, whose credentials are:

Harvard Medical School
Graduation Date:
Post Graduate Training:
University Hospitals, Ut - Intern (7/1/1960-6/30/1961)Mass Mental Health Center - Resident:Psychiatry (7/1/1961-6/30/1963)Yale Child Study Center, CT - Resident:Child Psychiatry (7/1/1966-6/30/1968)Harvard Schl Public Health - M.S. (7/1/1992-6/30/1995)

In our conversation with Dr. Kurland, who has a child psychiatry practise in Fall River, Massachusetts, we started off by asking the question that all of us who follow this blog want to know: In his training at Yale, was he taught to give kids "physicals" in therapy?

Dr. Kurland was shocked by this question. "Absolutely not !" he told us. "We were taught the exact opposite. We weren't allowed to. We were taught not to put even a hand on the shoulder of a child."

So, we continued, what about this line that Ayres has that child psychiatrists on the East Coast at places like Judge Baker and Yale were taught to touch children as part of therapy?

"That's bogus," Dr. Kurland told us. "I don't know of any child psychiatrist anywhere who was trained this way. For him to use this as an excuse for his behavior is pathetic. The idea that child psychiatrists do this sort of thing is just off the boards. "

We want to thank Dr. Kurland for speaking with us. And hey, you never know--he might be someone who could come in handy for the prosecution.


We would welcome hearing from other child psychiatrists who read this blog about their own training. Were any of you trained to give regular physical exams to your own patients?