How easy is it to fake mental illness when you are facing the death penalty? How about when you are applying for disability or suing someone for emotional distress? Psychologists call this malingering and it’s something every forensic psychologist has to consider when money or freedom is on the line. In this episode of Thread of Evidence, Dr. Joni Johnston interviews Dr. Barry Rosenfeld, a board certified forensic psychologist who talks about how often mental illnesses are faked and how forensic psychologists tell the difference between genuine symptoms and faked ones.
Dr. Barry Rosenfeld is a Professor and Chair in the Department of Psychology and an Adjunct Professor of Law at Fordham University. He worked for several years as Senior Psychologist for the New York and is Past President of the International Association of Forensic Mental Health Services as well as the former Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Forensic Mental Health. Dr. Rosenfeld is board certified in forensic psychology and maintains an active practice in forensic consultation. He has evaluated multiple individuals detained in the infamous Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo Bay military prisons, consulted to a U.N. War Tribunal regarding the prosecution of Serbian individuals accused of war crimes, and evaluated litigants in a class action lawsuit against the government of India. He has testified in many high-profile domestic cases, including U.S. v. Osama Bin Laden (involving alleged Al Qaeda members convicted of blowing up the U.S. Embassies in Tanzania and Kenya).