The Abel Assessmentu2019s Seven False Claims and the Truth The AASI is the number one diagnostic used in the US to Identify, contain and control sex offenders. False Claim # 1: It objectively measures the likelihood of past child sexual abuse in men and women who deny it. Fact: The first part of the test measures the amount of time the test taker looks at a 160 images and nothing more. The second part measures whatever the test taker puts down as their measure of sexual interest on those same images. False Claim # 2: The AASI has passed Daubert hearings for admissibility in Federal and State Courts. Fact: The Supreme Court in Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals, Inc., 509 US 579, 113 SCt 2786, 125 LEd 2d 469 (1993) established four non-exclusive factors to determine whether a particular expert’s methodology satisfies Rule 702: (1) whether the theory or technique has been tested; (2) whether the theory or technique has been subjected to peer review and publication; (3) the known or potential rate of error of the methods used and the existence and maintenance of standards controlling the technique’s operation; and (4) whether the theory or method has been generally accepted by the scientific community. The AASI has been rejected by many courts as not meeting the Daubert Standard for admissibility. In 2005, the Appeals Court of Massachusetts called it, u201cThe magic of young Harry Potter’s mixing potions at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry,u201d in confirmation of a 2002 trial courtu2019s exclusion of AASI results from a case. The same court also found it dangerously easy for the Abel Assessment to give false positives: “the AASI’s high error rate, coupled with Dr. Abel’s solution to the error rate, which is to merely ‘lower the cut-off score’, thereby erroneously labeling non-molesters as molesters, substantially detracts from the petitioner’s contention that the AASI is scientifically sound and sufficiently reliable to assist the trier of fact.” The United States of America, in a case against Guy Randy White Horse, November 2013, The United States District Court, District of South Dakota, Western Division, found that the Abel Assessment met none of the four Daubert standards. Dozens of other courts have found that the Abel Assessment doesnu2019t meet the Daubert standards and almost all these cases are when a pedophile seeks release from probation based on his improving Abel scores. False Claim # 3: The AASI is empirically validated with over 95 published scientific articles. Fact: Most of Abelu2019s verifications are based on his own research or those of clinicians with a direct financial interest in the acceptance and promotion of the Abel Assessment. One of the reasons the Massachusetts court will not accept the Abel Assessment is because the algorithms are not published for peer review. False Claim # 4: Itu2019s not racist. The AASI divides people into Caucasian (which includes Caucasians, Asians and Hispanics) and African-American test takers and has longer times (sexual interest bars) to be diagnosed sexual deviant, essential a handicap assuming African-Americans have more sexual deviance. Strangely enough the bar for African-Americans used to be shorter than the Caucasian bar and was lengthened due to criticism that was racist False Claim # 5: The test has a Social Desirability Score (Lie Scale) that measures the test takers veracity. Fact: The questions include, u201cHave you ever stolen office equipment from work?u201d and if the test taker answers u201cnou201d then they are assumed to be lying and hence lying on whether they ever sexually assaulted a child. Not exactly scientific. False Claim # 6: Itu2019s impossible to counter because the test-taker would have to match their viewing times and self-reported answers. u201cIt is difficult to falsify because it incorporates both the VRT and Questionnaire data into a complex logistical equation.u201d Fact: Faking the test is as simple as reporting, and viewing, the adult women for six or a count of six, teen girls for four, or a count of four, and every other image one. This is common knowledge among sex offenders and we found these directions on numerous web sites as well as the bathroom walls of sex offender treatment centers. False claim #7: The Abel Assessment can be used to track an offenderu2019s progress through treatment as their pedophilia, or lack thereof, changes. u201cIf the clinician is looking for changes in the clientu2019s sexual interest in children, then a pre-treatment assessment using the AASI-3, followed by a post-treatment AASI-3, adds an evidence-based element to treatment progress. Fact: Pedophilia, or lack thereof, doesnu2019t change. Though its possible the test takers viewing times or self-reported arousal lessens his or her sexual interest in children will be the same. Many of Abelu2019s assumptions come from conversion therapy, to turn gays straight, and the one lesson he didnu2019t glean from that disastrous fifty-year experiment is that sexual orientation (gay or straight, pedophiliac or not) doesnu2019t change. False Claim #8: The test is appropriate in cases where a divorced father seeks custody or visitation with children. Fact: The AASI is completely inappropriate where a boy or man has never been accused and they fact that its marketed this way is completely unethical and encourages false accusations of abuse, and false positives, in a culture where real sexual abuse is rampant.
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