Dr. Williams offers a range of psychological assessment services, focusing on psycho-legal and independent psychological evaluations. Referrals for such assessments are often made by third parties, including law firms and insurance companies.
One of our main areas of focus is the assessment of individuals who are at various stages of adjudication. Frequent referral questions pertain to the offender's psychological profile, offense causality, potential for recidivism, treatment and case management needs, and risk to society.
Our consultative services have been extended to numerous defense and prosecuting attorneys, as well as to probation, parole, correctional, and police personnel. Dr. Williams' expertise has been especially sought on matters connected with sexual and violent crimes. All psycho-legal reports and oral testimony are provided in conformity with the principles set forth in Rule 11-2 of the BC Supreme Court Civil Rules.
As one component of the assessment of sexual offenders, particularly those who have offended against children, the offender might be tested with the . We also offer this testing service to other mental health professionals who are involved in the treatment of sexual offenders and who wish to track the sexual preferences and therapeutic progress of their clients.
Assessments conducted by Dr. Williams include the following:
A psychodiagnostic evaluation is a comprehensive evaluation of the person from which a formal diagnosis of any existing mental disorder, including both major clinical disorders and personality disorders, is formulated. Such diagnoses are multiaxial in structure, adhering to the criteria of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition.
Ensuing from a forensic psychological assessment (which is an evaluation that is focused upon psychological factors as they apply within a legal/criminal context), a criminogenic assessment pertains to the provision of opinion regarding the causal factors that were associated with the offending behaviour. A description and explanation of the role of such variables is valuable not only in terms of understanding what led to the offensive activity but to a conceptualization of what changes need to be implemented in order to reduce the risk of re-offence.
Sexual Offender Assessment
This is a specialized form of assessment that is focused upon understanding the psychological and behavioural dynamics that led to the sexual offending and/or sexually problematic behaviour. Typically, it entails a clinical interview, an objective assessment of sexual interest and related detailed questionnaire (the Abel Assessment for Sexual Interest), administration of standardized psychological tests, and actuarial (statistical) estimates of the risk of sexual and violent recidivism.
Violent Offender Assessment
Assessments of violent offenders often are conducted within the context of the federal correctional system, parole board proceedings and the judiciary: in the case of the courts, the assessment may be for sentencing purposes and/or in connection with proceedings such as dangerous or long-term offender or civil commitment hearings. As the name implies, the individual undergoing such a psychological evaluation likely has a history of violent offending behaviour, and the focus of the assessment typically is upon the overall mental and behavioural status of the person in particular as it relates to his or her potential to engage in future acts of violence.
Typically, immigration-related assessments are requested by lawyers whose clients are interacting with the Canadian border or immigration services. The nature of the evaluation varies: in some cases the required focus is upon the client’s risk of re-offence; in other cases the quality of the marital relationship and/or the bond between parents and children, and the effects upon them of enforced separation, may be of particular interest.
A risk assessment is a psychological assessment that is focused upon the potential risk of the individual re-engaging in the types of behaviour that previously has brought him or her into contact with the criminal justice system. Often, such an assessment is incorporated into a more comprehensive psychological evaluation of personality, psychopathology, behavioural tendencies, and criminogenic factors.
Case Management Assessment
Psychological assessments for case management purposes may be conducted within a variety of contexts but most often are requested in relation to an individual’s correctional management. Correctional involvement may be upon a custodial or community basis (usually prison and probation or parole, respectively). The focus of such evaluations usually is upon how best to provide the individual with appropriate forms of supervision and treatment in order to lower the risk of recidivism or other behavioural problems.
This form of assessment evaluates the psychological/emotional/functional status of the person in relation to a traumatic injury or similar event that the individual has experienced. Such an evaluation examines the overall psychological and behavioural status of the person with a view toward examining not only the extent of any disability or functional impairment but also any factors that might be precluding a timely resumption of work and optimal functioning. Opinions and recommendations regarding treatment, rehabilitation and prognosis typically are incorporated into such an assessment report.
What others are saying:
“Dr. Karl Williams has provided specialized risk assessment training for BC Corrections staff who are mandated to assess and supervise persons convicted of sexual offences. This training necessitates precise instruction delivered in a responsive manner to assure that staff members acquire the skills for this type of risk assessment. Dr. Williams has been our preferred instructor for this training because of his ability to combine his professional experience with an acute sense of dynamic instructional style.”
Christopher Thomson, MEd
Justice Institute of British Columbia