In the last post, FR examined the role of Dr. Marc T. Abrams, the court-appointed custody evaluator who changed the lives of three children by separating them from their mother.
Dr. Abrams was a member of the Panel of Forensic Custody Evaluators in the First and Second Judicial Departments in New York – before Catherine Kassenoff got him thrown off for gross misconduct.
Dr. Abrams’ Actions Lead to Separation of Children from Mother
Carol Most, the court-appointed attorney for the children in the Kassenoff divorce and custody case, recommended Dr. Abrams to Family Court Judge Lewis Lubell.
Dr. Abrams depended on referrals from attorneys like Most.
Judge Lubell appointed Dr. Abrams as the “neutral” custody evaluator to determine who should have custody of the Kassenoff girls – the father or the mother.
Allan Kassenoff, the father, would pay 80 percent of his fee, and the mother, Catherine, would pay 20 percent.
Just as Most got the court to appoint Dr. Abrams in Kassenoff, she had him appointed for Treanor v Treanor.
Another common denominator in both cases is that Stephanie Treanor had the same attorney as Allan Kassenoff–Constantine ‘Gus’ Dimopoulus.
Treanor, however, had a problem with Dr. Abrams. She told Dimopoulus that Dr. Abrams sexually harassed her.
Not only that, Stephanie knew another woman, Cecilia Thomas, who said Dr. Abrams committed sexual misconduct with her during a custody evaluation.
Treanor wanted to tell the judge and disqualify Dr. Abrams as her custody evaluator.
But Dimopoulus and Carol Most did not want these two women telling the court what happened when Dr. Abrams was alone with them. A scandal could cause Dr. Abrams to lose the custody evaluation appointment for Dimpoulous’ [and Most’s] “whale,” Allan Kassenoff.
Most and Dimopopulus conspired to hide the matter from the court and Catherine Kassenoff.
On October 3, 2019, Gus emailed Stephanie Treanor that he would quit unless “You agree not to disclose Cecilia Thomas’ allegations in this Court proceeding without my express written consent… You will not ask me to move the court to have Dr. Abrams removed as the forensic evaluator in this case… You agree to immediately pay the court-ordered retainer to Dr. Abrams and… continue with the evaluation… You will make an appointment with him on his next available date (within the next 15 days)…”
Controversial Facebook Posts By Neutral Evaluator
While Catherine knew nothing about Dr. Abrams’ sexual harassment allegations, she was concerned about his Facebook posts, which seemed misogynistic and undoubtedly political.
A neutral custody evaluator who used such language as “pussy!”, “whore,” “prostitutes,” “Republiscum,” “jackass in chief,” “NRA whore!”, “douches,” “COWARDLY WHORES!” seemed outlandish.
She brought it to the attention of the AFC Most, who said she had worked with Dr. Abrams for decades, that he was “her” expert on another pending case in Orange County, and his Facebook posts were “funny.”
For instance, on October 24, 2012, Abrams posted on Facebook: “If a woman votes Republican, do they hate themselves or just have really, really LOW self-esteem?”
On February 21, 2018, Abrams addressed a taunt as follows: “To all of our elected COWARDLY WHORES.” On February 22, 2018, Dr. Abrams called on “Sane Citizens” to: “VOTE THE WHORES OUT OF OFFICE.”
On August 18, 2018, Abrams posted a photo of Rudolph Giuliani with this caption: “His head is now used as a rectal fissure plug for Trump.”
On January 21, 2018: “I think that Jessica Hahn sucked his brain out through his dick many years ago.”
On August 24, 2018, he posted an image that depending on how one sees it – a woman performing oral sex on a man or a man reading a book.
In the fall, Dr. Abrams commenced his evaluation of the Kassenoff family. He knew that Catherine was the long-time primary caregiver of the three children. The children wanted to live with their mother, they said.
Catherine provided Dr. Abrams with evidence of Allan’s physical and emotional abuse, including audio/videos of him, his admissions, third-party affidavits and statements, medical records, CPS reports, police reports, and therapists’ reports.
During one or more meetings with Catherine in the forensic evaluation, when they were alone, Dr. Abrams asked her sexually inappropriate questions, she said in court filings.
Custody Evaluation Complete; Emergency Eviction
On March 25, 2020, Dr. Abrams issued his forensic custody report, recommending the court grant Allan custody of the children.
Abrams’ custodial recommendation rested on a finding that Catherine was “gaslighting” the children to imagine Allan had abused them when he had not.
In his findings, Abrams also created a diagnosis for Catherine of an “unspecified” personality disorder. It was peculiar. Catherine had no history of a mental illness, and her therapist, a psychiatrist, went on the record saying Catherine had no mental health issues.
On March 27, 2020, two days after Abrams’ report, Gus moved for an “emergency” ex parte order for Catherine’s immediate eviction from the house she, Allan, and the kids had lived in for years. Judge Lubell chose to grant the order without hearing from Catherine. He trusted Dr. Abrams.
Judge Lubell also chose not to consider the testimony of Catherine’s therapist, an M.D., who supported Catherine’s firm mental health.
During the height of the COVID pandemic, Judge Lubell ordered Catherine from her home; she was now childless and homeless. The kids were cared for by their mother on the morning of March 27, and by the evening, they lost their primary attachment figure based on the expert opinion of Dr. Abrams – him and him alone.
Allan paid Dr. Abrams $32,000 for his evaluation. Then, in July 2020, Allan paid Dr. Abrams $400/hour to testify for several days on his behalf at a hearing to keep Catherine away from her children.
Catherine Files Complaint Against Dr. Abrams
During the summer of 2021, Catherine filed a complaint against Dr. Abrams with the Office of Attorneys for Children and the Mental Health Professionals Certification Committee, alleging gross misconduct. His alleged misconduct included a false diagnosis of her mental health, minimized domestic abuse by Allan, was financially aligned with Allan, sexually harassing her and other women, and was misogynistic and biased.
On August 24, 2021, Dr. Abrams was removed in disgrace from the Panel of Forensic Custody Evaluators in the First and Second Judicial Departments at the recommendation of the MHPCC, based on Catherine’s complaint.
Social Media Post Exposes Judge’s Relationship with Dr. Abrams
Judge Lubell knew that Catherine caused Dr. Abrams’ removal from the panel, which cost him a substantial share of his income. In addition, the family court lawyers lost a reliable custody evaluator they knew would find parental alienation when they needed it for one of their “whales.”
Judge Lubell was aggressive, screaming at Catherine, threatening to arrest her, and telling her to get mental help.
Mother Files Grievance Against Judge in Custody Battle
Then on November 20, 2021, Catherine struck back when she posted a photograph of Judge Lubell presiding over Dr. Abrams’ wedding on social media.
Next, on November 26, 2021, Catherine filed a grievance with the Commission on Judicial Conduct against Judge Lubell, in which she detailed his inappropriate relationship with Dr. Abrams and his numerous baseless threats to incarcerate and arrest her and refer her to the grievance committee, baseless threats to hold her in contempt, and his intemperate demeanor, which he displayed by screaming in the courtroom at her.
On November 29, 2021, Judge Lubell announced to Catherine, Allan, and his team, Dimopolus and Most, that there was “strong support for recusal in this matter,” he recused himself from the case, possibly sparing himself from removal from the bench.
Judge Lubell declared a mistrial of all the contempt motions Allan and his team pursued against Catherine in the hope that Judge Lubell would jail her.
As a parting gesture, he restricted her from contacting the children on Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.
Children’s Lives Altered Despite Removal
But this post is about Dr. Marc T. Abrams, an expert forensic custody evaluator, whose $32,000 findings paid by the father separated three children from their mother.
Even though Dr. Abrams was removed from the case, Judge Lubell’s order stood. Allan had the children. Catherine was banned from their lives, and her fight continued.
Email Reveals Evaluator’s Behavior
Some might wish to understand the enormous wrong of Dr. Abrams’ alleged behavior and its context – a supreme power imbalance between a custody evaluator whose absolute power can corruptly determine who raises children and a mother trying to protect them.
Cecilia Thomas does this for us. Her email helped stop Dr. Abrams – after 40 years of custody evaluations – from doing what he did to her and Catherine, and who knows how many other mothers and their children – taken away on the word of one man, strangely aligned with attorneys and judges who appears to be anything but neutral.
Thomas Email on Dr. Abrams
August 26, 2019,
This letter is in reference to my experience with Dr. Marc Abrams when he was assigned as the forensic psychologist during my custody battle case for my young daughter approximately eleven years ago.
I was in my early twenties, going through a contentious divorce in Westchester County, NY.
Although I had highly reputable representation, my estranged husband and I could not agree on a custody schedule, it was left up to Dr. Abrams and his evaluation report as to who would get primary custody of our daughter.
At the time of the initial meeting with him, he looked at me from head to toe and then instructed me to sit in a chair. He then brought his chair directly in front of mine, uncomfortably close. He took out several 8×10 photos from a file he’d been holding, and started showing them to me one by one, asking me humiliating and accusatory questions about them.
The photos were personal in nature (mostly of me wearing a bathing suit or underwear) and had been taken by my ex-husband during our marriage.
Dr. Abrams’ questions and demeanor were extremely intimidating. He then completely changed direction and began asking me a number of very personal questions, including my ethnicity, which had nothing to do with my character, love as a mother, and caretaker for my daughter.
He set the tone as dominating and aggressive, while consistently reminding me that he had the power to determine the outcome of my future.
Subsequently, he started to call me while I was at work, telling me to drop everything to come to his office as he needed a meeting with me. This happened several times. At one meeting, he touched my hips and my shoulders, showing me proper form for his martial arts practice in which he had a studio next door.
This was inappropriate and made me feel extremely uncomfortable, but I was terrified to lose my daughter and did not want to upset Dr. Abrams or tell him I thought he was crossing the line.
Over time, he started asking me to come to his home. He wanted to cook for me and show me some of the wines he collected and enjoyed. I obviously refused and kept making up excuses, saying that I wouldn’t want to jeopardize losing my daughter and that it would not be appropriate.
Inside, I feared he was either trying to have a personal relationship with me or set me up. I was so scared I didn’t know if I should tell anyone. He was married, and I felt so uncomfortable every time he asked me to come over. He finally stopped asking me, but then things got even worse.
He had a couch in his office, and one day he went and laid on it while I was sitting in the chair. He asked me to come over and be next to him. My stomach turned, and I just wanted to run out of his office. He said he just wanted to feel me close to him and that the case was almost finished and it was looking really good for me.
I went over to the couch, and he asked me to lay on him, so I did. My back on his chest. I could feel that he became erect, and I started to cry. I made an excuse that I needed to go or I would get fired, and I needed my job to care for my child.
I wish I had the courage at the time to stand up for myself. I was young, vulnerable, and horrified of losing my baby girl. I did not understand the process of determining custody, but I did know that this man had a massive amount of power over me as the mother of a young girl.
I felt I couldn’t tell my attorneys because of the potential repercussions. There was literally no one I felt I could trust, and I was also so ashamed and disgusted with what he did to me.
I have been tortured by the memories of this experience for many years, and can go no longer without exposing the actions of this man – not only because of what he did to me, but also because of the fear of all the other women who may have been subjected to the same thing.
I was granted primary custody of my beautiful daughter and have no agenda here other than for people to know the truth – Ceccilia Thomas
So this is the state of the jury-less, due process-less Family Court, where a judge can appoint and then attend the wedding of a sexually harassing expert with funny Facebook posts.
Everybody was laughing all the way to the bank.
Allan paid more than $3 million to win the battle of destroying his wife.
Of course, we have a long road to investigate. It is too early to make any final judgment.
We have yet to see Catherine’s death certificate. But it looks like Catherine is gone, dead, and lost to a cause she fought so bravely for four years.
It seems Allan, the whale, bought custody from a group of sharks arguably as sleazy and corrupt as he, in a money-driven perfidious court where tyrant judges rule without law, without reason, without compassion, who sell children to line the pockets of their criminal conspirators to the high bidder.
Dr. Abrams is the poster boy-expert of the tremendously evil parental alienation theory, which takes children from mothers without a hearing and without regard to the pain they cause their children. To stop this, we must dedicate our efforts.
And Catherine Kassenoff, though not the first to fall, is a pillar to the cause.