Contact this Expert Witness
- Company: Michael J. DiTomasso, Ph.D., P.A.
- Phone: (305) 256-4324
- Cell: (786) 553-3390
- Fax: (305) 256-5610
Specialties & Experience of this Expert Witness
General Specialties:Forensic Psychology and Substance Abuse
Specialty Focus:Forensic Psychological Evaluations, Parenting, Parental Alienation, Diagnosis, Competency to Proceed, Miranda Waiver, Coerced Confession, Mitigation, Psychosexual, MDSO, Physical/Sexual Abuse, False allegations, Trauma, PTSD, Schizophrenia, Bipolar Disorder, Substance Abuse, Addiction, Malingering
Education:PhD, University of Miami; MS, University of Miami; BA, Rhode Island College
Years in Practice:26
Number of Times Deposed/Testified in Last 4 Yrs:71
I, Dr. Michael J. DiTomasso, am a PhD level Forensic Psychologist. I specialize in Forensic Psychological Evaluations and trial consulting in Criminal, Juvenile Delinquency, and Child Protective Services matters. I do a lot of work in the basic forensic functions such as evaluating for mitigation and downward departure, competency to proceed, to Waive Miranda, to Testify Relevantly, etc. In regard to these kinds of cases, I supply expert opinion as to mental health diagnoses, treatment needs, appropriate level of care, and prognosis. I have expertise and experience with all the major diagnostic categories such as schizophrenia spectrum disorders, bipolar, anxiety, depression, PTSD, substance abuse disorders, psychopathy and other personality disorders. I am a member of the Association for Threat Assessment Professionals (ATAP) and evaluation of dangerousness and risk is often an integral part of the work I do. I have testified at sentencing and Arthur hearings in regard to dangerousness, risk, and likelihood of recidivism. I discuss how mental illness and drug/alcohol abuse weigh into such risk. I utilize a combination of actuarial risk assessment instruments, psychodiagnostic tests, record review, and clinical judgment to form such opinions. I conduct a good number of evaluations for accused sex offenders, including MDSO (Mentally Disordered Sex Offender) and psychosexual evaluations. I incorporate all available collateral data, and I use instruments such as the Static-99-R and the Hare Psychopathy Checklist in order to bring the best in hard test data into the clinical opinions that I offer to the court. I will accept child abuse cases and I will accept child pornography cases. I will not accept Involuntary Civil Commitment for Sexually Violent Offenders cases (here in Florida they are called Jimmy Rice cases). I would explain my rationale for not doing so upon request. I have been found an expert in Dependency Court (Child Protective Services cases) hundreds of times over the years. I have testified for the prosecution and for the defense. I have opined on ability to parent in regard to mental illness, intellectual deficiencies, substance abuse, and characterological/criminological features of the parents. On a few occasions, I have been hired as an expert by entities such as schools and day care centers, and the Department of Children and Families itself, to evaluate, review records and videos, and testify in civil cases wherein damages are claimed for Child Abuse or Child Neglect. I have experience dealing with false allegations of sexual abuse in Family and Child Protective cases. To be clear, I have done much more work in Child Protective Services cases than in Family Court cases, but the issues of ability to parent safely and appropriately, quality of care, bonding, etc. are often common to both types of cases. In many cases, my work goes beyond evaluation and testimony, and I have served as a trial consultant on a number of criminal, psychosexual, child abuse, and child neglect cases. I have helped attorneys understand what opposing psychologists are saying, what they are basing it on, how reliable it is, and how it can be challenged. I understand Daubert, my work meets the standard, and I can help with what points should be addressed when a Daubert challenge needs to be made. At need, I will travel to correctional, mental health, and other institutions to see clients. The other professional pursuit that I have put some time into is teaching. During most of the years between 1996 and 2019, I taught one or two classes per week, on an adjunct basis, in the evenings, at the University of Miami. I taught Personality Theory, Tests and Measurements, and I developed a Forensic Psychology class that the Department decided to use. I taught it for about four years, before stepping down from teaching in 2019.