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TRUMBULL COUNTY State pulls psychologist's license for rules violations



Published: Fri, April 15, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



Dr. Douglas C. Darnall could be suspended for up to two years.

By PEGGY SINKOVICH

VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF

WARREN -- The Ohio Board of Psychology has suspended the license of Dr. Douglas C. Darnall, a psychologist who did work at Trumbull County Family Court, .

According to the state board's findings of fact and conclusions of law, the ruling was issued April 8 suspending his license from between six months and two years.

Dr. Darnall, who is also Weathersfield school board member, could not be reached to comment. Judges Richard James and Pam Rintala of Trumbull County Family Court were also unavailable..

"Dr. Darnall's license to practice psychology in the state of Ohio shall be suspended for two years, effective May 9, 2005, with a minimum of the initial six months being an active term of suspension," the ruling states.

The ruling also states Dr. Darnall shall make arrangements for another appropriate professional to deal with the emergency needs of his clients while his license is under active suspension.

Conditions

The active suspension shall end Nov. 8, with the remainder of the suspension stayed contingent on Dr. Darnall's receiving board approval of a practice monitoring plan. The plan means that a doctoral level psychologist with expertise in forensic psychology will serve as a monitor of Dr. Darnall's psychological practice, the ruling states.

Dr. Darnall is also ordered to complete 30 hours of remedial continuing education in the area of psychological services related to domestic relations issues, the ruling states.

According to the ruling, the state board found Dr. Darnall violated the general rules of professional conduct.

The ruling states that Dr. Darnall, in February 2000, held an individual session with a client at his private practice and subsequently conducted a court-ordered evaluation on the client.

"Dr. Darnall expanded the scope of the evaluation beyond the court-ordered psychological evaluation to one that included custody issues but did not inform the client or the court of the expansion of the scope when conducting the evaluation and did not discuss in his report any rationale for the expanded scope," the ruling states.

The ruling further notes that even though Dr. Darnall was aware of concerns expressed by the client and her counsel about his role as the court-appointed evaluator, he failed to remove himself from the evaluation.




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