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Pacific Forensic Group - Forensic Psychology, Neuropsychology & Neurology Expert Witnesses

Teo Ernst, Psy.D., ABPP (Board Certified Forensic Psychologist)

Teo Ernst, Psy.D., ABPP (Board Certified Forensic Psychologist)

1402 Park St., Suite C
Alameda, California 94501

Phone(415) 385-9701


► Contact Teo Ernst, Psy.D., ABPP (Board Certified Forensic Psychologist)

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Dr. Ernst is the Forensic Director of the Pacific Forensic Group, a specialized firm of eleven highly credentialed experts in Forensic Psychology, Neuropsychology and Neurology. Dr. Ernst specializes in PTSD, Mitigation and Resentencing, Testamentary Capacity and Undue Influence, and Employment Evaluations. He is one of a select group fewer than 45 psychologists in California who have undergone the rigorous examination process necessary to obtain Board Certification in Forensic Psychology. Dr. Ernst is an Associate Clinical Professor in the UCSF Department of Psychiatry where he provides teaching and supervision on a voluntary basis. As a trauma expert, Dr. Ernst chose to complete an additional year of fellowship training in PTSD at the San Francisco Veterans Hospital.


PFG Experts collective areas of specialization include:
Child and Adult Personal Injury
Traumatic Brain Injury
Toxic Exposure
Testamentary Capacity
Standard of Care
Housing Discrimination
Nursing Home Care
Employment Discrimination & Harassment
Mitigation & Resentencing
Violence Risk
Sexual Violence Risk Assessment
Trail Competency
Criminal Responsibility/NGRI
MSO and Intent
Franklin Evaluations
Disputed Confession
Trauma and Offending
Juvenile Competency
Transfer Hearings
Disposition Evaluations
730 Evaluations
Child Witness Credibility
Fitness for Duty
Defense Base Act
Priest Violence Risk Assessment
Threat Assessment

Areas of Expertise

Additional Expertise:

Toxic Exposure, Housing Discrimination, Nursing Home Care, Employment Discrimination & Harassment, Mitigation & Resentencing, Sexual Violence Risk Assessment, Trail Competency, Criminal Responsibility/NGRI, MSO and Intent, Diversion, Franklin Evaluations, Disputed Confession, Trauma and Offending, Juvenile Competency, Transfer Hearings, Disposition Evaluations, 730 Evaluations, Child Witness Credibility, Disability, Defense Base Act, Priest Violence Risk Assessment, Threat Assessment, Filicide, ADHD.


As a specialized team of experts in forensic psychology, neuropsychology, and neurology, the Pacific Forensic Group is uniquely positioned to address the majority of forensic issues involving the brain, psychological functioning and behavior.

Our group of colleagues include:
-Dr. Peter Brain Andersson, Board Certified Neurologist, Specializing in Traumatic Brain Injury, Neurocognitive Disorders, Multiple Sclerosis
-Dr. Charles Filanosky, Board Certified Rehabilitation Psychologist, Specializing in Traumatic Brain Injury, PTSD
-Dr. David Contreras, Board Certified Forensic Psychologist, Specializing in Juvenile Competency to Stand Trial, Transfer/Waiver to Adult Court, Juvenile Sexual Offenses
-Dr. Lisa Kalich, Board Certified Forensic Psychologist, Specializing in Personal Injury, Parenting Capacity, Sexual Offender and Violence Risk Assessment for Adults and Juveniles, Disability, Child Witness Issues.
-Dr. Jerry Lockhart, Board Certified Forensic Psychologist, Bilingual (Spanish-English Specializing in Juvenile Competency and Immigration Evaluations
-Dr. Laurel Mattos, Forensic Psychologist, Specializing in Trial Competency, NGRI, Mental Health Diversion, Violence Risk Assessment
-Dr. Elise Yenne, Forensic Psychologist, Specializing in Juvenile and Adult Trial Competency, Violence Risk Assessment Transfer Hearings
-Dr. Mario Souza, Bilingual (Spanish-English) Board Certified Forensic Psychologist, Specializing in Violence Risk, Sex Offender Risk, Insanity, Mitigation, and Mental Health Diversion
-Dr. Trayci Dahl, Board Certified Forensic Psychologist, Specializing in Filicide, Capital Sentencing, and Threat Assessment

The Pacific Forensic Group is unique in having two experts who conduct evaluations in Spanish. We are available for in person and zoom forensic evaluations depending upon the case specifics. Please utilize our website to learn more about our forensic and medical-legal services the civil, criminal, probate, and employment arenas

Areas Served

All States

Professional Experience

8/08 – Present Private Psychological Practice, San Francisco, CA

Psychotherapy, consultation and forensic evaluations for adults, couples and families.

3/14/12 – Present UCSF Intensive Family Therapy Program, San Francisco, CA

Active member of reflecting team that provides weekly interventions and consultations to distressed families treated at UCSF. Provides teaching and consultation on family therapy to psychiatry residents, fellows, community trainees, and staff.

11/08 – 1/13 San Francisco V.A. Medical Center, San Francisco, CA
Compensation and Pension Services Contract Staff Psychologist

Conducted over 100 forensic psychological evaluations on veterans applying for service-connected disability for mental disorders. Evaluations outlined diagnosis, social and occupational impairment, and etiology of psychiatric presentation.

8/07 – 6/13 Napa State Hospital, Napa, CA
Staff Psychologist

Unit psychologist in inpatient forensic hospital treating 1370, 1026, and 2972 commitments. Competency to stand trial assessment. Violence risk assessment. Court letter composition. Expert court testimony. Psychodiagnostic Assessment. Neuropsychological screening. Individual and group psychotherapy aimed at addressing mental illness, substance abuse, cognitive impairment, competency, and violence risk. Behavior plan construction and monitoring. Multidisciplinary treatment and discharge planning utilizing risk management relapse prevention model. Crisis assessment and intervention. Supervision and didactic instruction for APA interns.

9/06 – 8/07 San Francisco V.A. Medical Center, San Francisco, CA
Fellowship in PTSD and Substance Abuse

American Psychological Association approved fellowship specializing in Posttraumatic Stress Disorder and Substance Abuse Disorders. Provided individual and group trauma and substance abuse-focused psychotherapy to veterans. Attended a weekly substance abuse seminar, which I additionally presented at. Organized and presented a weekly PTSD training seminar for psychiatry residents and psychology interns. Ran clinical triage for new referrals to the Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Clinical Team. Contributed to program development for Iraq/Afghanistan veterans. Provided individual and group supervision to psychology practicum trainees and interns. Facilitated weekly intake meetings for PTSD team. Conducted personality, diagnostic, and neuropsychological assessments on veterans with psychiatric and/or substance abuse conditions. Organized panel for UCSF psychiatry grand rounds. Participated in application review, interviewing, and evaluation of psychology interns and postdoctoral applicants.

9/05 – 8/06 Napa State Hospital, Napa, CA
APA Intern

American Psychological Association approved predoctoral internship. Training in the scientifically informed treatment of civil and criminally committed patients in a hospital setting. Individual psychodynamic therapy, dialectical behavioral therapy, and cognitive behavioral therapy. Group therapy including anger management, substance abuse, relapse prevention, interpersonal process, and social skills training. Two rotations as a unit psychologist conducting brief therapy, behavioral medicine, suicide and homicide assessment, behavior plan construction, interdisciplinary treatment planning, and case management. Completion of twelve assessments on cognitive and personality functioning, behavior analysis, and suicide/homicide risk assessment. Weekly seminars on professional issues, psychotherapy intervention, case consultation, and clinical/forensic assessment.


*Licensed Psychologist, CA
*Board Certification, American Academy of Forensic Psychology


*Associate Clinical Professor - Volunteer, UCSF Department
of Psychiatry
*Fellow, American Academy of Forensic Psychology
*Specialist, American Board of Forensic Psychology
*Subject Matter Expert, Qualified Medical Examiner Pre-Test Panel

Awards & Honors

Girvetz Award for Outstanding Graduate in Philosophy Department, U.C. Santa Barbara
Outstanding Dissertation Award, Wright Institute


Select list of PFG expert's publications:

Chartier, M., Tullis, V., Frawley, E., Filanosky, C., Carmody, T., McQuaid, J., Li, P., Lampiris, H., & Wong, J. (2015). The Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA): A pilot study of a brief screening tool for mild and moderate cognitive impairment in HIV-positive Veterans. Journal of the International Association of AIDS Care Providers 14, 197-201.

Field, N.P., and Filanosky, C. (2010). Continuing bonds, risk factors for complicated grief, and adjustment to bereavement. Death Studies 34, 1, 1-29.

Nitch, S. R., Rosen, A. S., Mattos, L. A., Roye, S., & Glassmire, D. M. (2021). Alternatives to
forced-choice performance validity tests. In K. B. Boone (Ed.), Assessment of feigned cognitive impairment: A Neuropsychological Perspective – Second edition. The Guildford Press.

Ng, W., Mattos, L. A., Coffey, C. A., Molina, S. M., Gottfried, E. D., & Glassmire, D. M. (2021) The association between clinicians' initial judgments of feigning and outcomes on symptom validity measures among pretrial forensic psychiatric inpatients. International Journal of Law and Psychiatry, 76, 101698.

Mattos, L. A., Schmidt, A. T., Henderson, C. E., & Hogue, A. (2017). Therapeutic alliance and
treatment outcome: The role of callous-unemotional traits. Psychotherapy, 54, 136-147.

Blacker, D., Urquiza, A., Kalich, L., and Carmichael, B. (2016). Termination of Parental Rights In Tiffany Masson (Ed.) Inside Forensic Psychology (225-247). Praeger: Santa Barbara, California.
Kalich, L., Carmichael, B., Masson, T., and Blacker, D. (2007). Evaluating the evaluator: Advice for legal professionals in assessing the competency of termination of parental rights evaluations. Journal of Psychiatry and Law, Fall (365-97).

Lockhart, J., DiCiro, M., Rokop, J., and Brennan, A. (2021). California Sexually Violent Predator (SVP) Evaluations: Static-99R scoring and Diagnostic field reliability. Sexual Abuse.

Lockhart, J. J., & Satya-Murti, S. (2020). Pandemics and Riots: What do they tell us about crime, recidivism, and health? Forensic Science International: Mind and Law

Satya-Murti, S., & Lockhart, J. J. (2019). Have we lost our focus on fundamental causes? Distal determinants of sexual violence and disease. Forensic Science International Reports, 1, 100028.

Satya-Murti, S., & Lockhart, J. J. (2018). Needed: Consensus and classification for terms used in cognitive, forensic and clinical bias discussions. Forensic Science International, 293, e10–e11.
Lockhart, J. J., & Satya-Murti, S. (2018). Blinding or information control in diagnosis: could it reduce errors in clinical decision-making? Diagnosis, 0(0)

Lockhart, J. (2017). Individual Risk Prediction: Or, Confidence Intervals For Dummies. Open Access journal of forensic psychology.

Lockhart, J., & Satya-Murti, S. (2017). Diagnosing Crime and Diagnosing Disease: Bias Reduction
Strategies in Forensic and Clinical Sciences. Journal of Forensic Sciences.

Lockhart, J., & Satya-Murti, S. (2016). Review of: Robertson, C. T., & Kesselheim, A. S. (2016). Blinding as a solution to bias: Strengthening biomedical science, forensic science, and law. Open Access journal of forensic psychology, 8, 17-21.

Lockhart, J. (2015). How Should Validity Testing Impact the Expert's Opinion? Archives
of Forensic Psychology, 1(2), 78–96.

Satya-Murti, S., & Lockhart, J. J. (2018). Diagnosing Crime and Diagnosing Disease-II: Visual Pattern Perception and Diagnostic Accuracy. Journal of Forensic Sciences.

Satya-Murti, S., & Lockhart, J. (2015). Recognizing and reducing cognitive bias in
clinical and forensic neurology. Neurology: Clinical Practice, 5(5), 389–396.

Satya-Murti, S., & Lockhart, J. J. (2015). Neurology and the correctional environment.
Neurology: Clinical Practice, 5(3), 188–189.

Lockhart, J., and Satya-Murti, S. (2015). Symptom Exaggeration and Symptom Validity Testing in Persons with Medically Unexplained Neurological Presentations. Neurology: Clinical Practice, vol. 5, 1, 17-24.

Lockhart, J. (2012). Review of Pinals, D., and Mossman, D. (2011). Evaluation for Civil Commitment. Open Access Journal of Forensic Psychology

Rosen, A., Lockhart, J., Gants, E., and Westergaard, C. (1991). Maintenance of grip-induced muscle tension: A behavioral marker of schizophrenia. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, vol. 100, 4, 583-593.

Ernst, T., Mart, Eric. The Assessment of Testamentary Capacity and Undue Influence: Common Fallacies and Remediation Strategies. American Journal of Forensic Psychology – Accepted but unpublished.

Brown, D., Norona, J., Busch, A. Armstrong, K., Crouch, S., Ernst, T., Darrow, S., Jackson, S. Isle, E. (2020) Is it Us or is it Me? Family Experiences of Connectedness Following a Reflecting Team Intervention. Family Process

Andersson P-B, Rando T. (1999) Childhood Neuromuscular diseases. Current Opinion in Pediatrics. 11:497-503.

Suhy J, Rooney WD, Goodkin DE, Capizzano AA, Maudsley AA, Waubant E, Andersson P-B, Weiner MW 2000) 1H-MRS of normal appearing white matter and lesions in primary progressive MS: comparison with relapsing remitting MS. Multiple Sclerosis 6:148-155

Goodkin DE, Shulman M, Winkelhake J, Waubant E, Andersson P-B, Stewart T, Nelson S, Fischbein N, Coyle PK, Frohman E, Jacobs L, Holcenberg J, Lee M, Mocci S. (2000) A phase I trial of solubilized DR2:MBP84-102 (AG284) in multiple sclerosis. Neurology. 54:1414-20.

Lin P.T., Andersson P-B, Distad BJ, Barohn RJ, Cho SC, So YT, Katz JS (2005) Bilateral phrenic neuropathy causing painless bilateral diaphragmatic paralysis. Neurology 65:499-501

Yenne, E.M., Coffey, C.A., & Pate, A. (2021). The perfect storm: The promise of Trauma- Informed Care in reconceptualizing psychotically-driven maternal filicide. The Behavior Therapist, 44(5), 236-242.

Henderson, C.E., Manning, H.M., Davis, C.M, Conroy, D.E., Van Horn, M..L., Henry, K Long, T., Ryan, L., Boland, J., Yenne, E.M., Schiafo, M., Waldo, J., & Sze, C. (2020). Daily physical activity and alcohol use among young adults. Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 43(3), 365-376.

Yasuhara, K., Formon, D., Phillips, S., & Yenne, E.M. (2019). Development of a measure of mental health stigma including police behaviors. Psychiatry, Psychology, and Law.
Cramer, R. J., Wechsler, H. J., Miller, S.L., & Yenne, E.M. (2017). Suicide prevention in correctional settings: Current standards, and recommendations for research, prevention, and training. Journal of Correctional Health Care, 23(3), 313-328.

Yenne, E.M., Alessi, L, & Jacobi, T. (2015). Lockstep literacies: The challenge of social Justice work behind bars. In Concannon, K. & Finley, L. (Eds.) Peace and Social Justice Education on Campus: Faculty and Student Perspectives. United Kingdom: Cambridge Scholars Publishing

Articles Published by Teo Ernst, Psy.D., ABPP (Board Certified Forensic Psychologist)

Link The Psychological Assessment of Testamentary Capacity and Other Legal Capacities in California

This article provides a conceptual framework for understanding legal capacity and describes the components and legal basis of a psychological assessment of testamentary capacity, contractual capacity, undue influence, and the capacity to make medical decisions. It may serve as a reference for attorneys to identify the key aspects of an effective capacity evaluation, and to prepare for cross-examination of opposing experts.

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Link Psychological Personal Injury Evaluations, Trauma, and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

This article reviews best practices for conducting psychological personal injury evaluations in civil proceedings. It may be useful for attorneys to review in order to understand the components of an effective personal injury evaluation and to prepare for the cross-examination of opposing psychological experts.

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Link Youthful Offender Psychological Mitigation Evaluations for Franklin Hearings and Other High Stakes Proceedings

This article reviews the legal basis, research foundations, and a potential evaluation structure of youthful offender mitigation evaluations in California.

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