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Thomas D. Lyon
USC Gould School of Law
- FACULTY DIRECTORY
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- SAKS INSTITUTE FOR MENTAL HEALTH LAW, POLICY, AND ETHICS
- + WORKSHOPS AND CONFERENCES
Thomas D. Lyon's goal is to identify the most productive means of questioning children about abuse and violence. He is the Judge Edward J. and Ruey L. Guirado Chair in Law and Psychology at the University of Southern California Gould School of Law. He teaches Evidence and the Child Interviewing Practicum. Lyon directs the USC Child Interviewing Lab, which conducts research and forensic interviews with children who have been victims of maltreatment or who have witnessed violence.
Lyon is past-president of the American Psychological Association’s Section on Child Maltreatment (Division 37) and a former member of the Board of Directors of the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children. He has published more than 100 papers in law reviews, psychology journals and books; has authored or co-authored more than 150 research presentations at psychology and law conferences; and has conducted more than 280 trainings with judges, attorneys, law professors, social workers, psychologists and reporters. His work has been supported by the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, the United States Department of Justice, the National Center on Child Abuse and Neglect, the California Endowment, and the Haynes Foundation.
A magna cum laude graduate of Dartmouth College and Harvard Law School, Lyon received his PhD. in developmental psychology from Stanford University. He was an attorney for the Children’s Services Division of the Los Angeles County Counsel and a research associate at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center prior to joining USC Law in 1995.
A. Publications in Peer-reviewed Journals
- 87. Gongola, J., Williams, S., & Lyon, T.D. (in press). Children's under-informative responding is associated with concealment of a transgression. Applied Cognitive Psychology.
- 86. Nogalska, A.M., Henderson, H.M. Cho, S.J., & Lyon, T.D. (in press). Police interviewing behaviors and commercially sexually exploited adolescents' reluctance. Psychology, Public Policy, and Law.
- 85. Henderson, H., Cho, S.J., Nogalska, A.M., & Lyon, T.D. (2021). Identifying novel forms of reluctance in commercially sexually exploited adolescents. Child Abuse & Neglect, 115, 104994.
- 84. McWilliams, K., Williams, S., Stolzenberg, S.N., Evans, A.D., & Lyon, T.D. (in press). Don't know responding in young maltreated children: The effects of wh- questions type and enhanced interview instructions. Law & Human Behavior.
- 83. Sullivan, C., St. George, S., Stolzenberg, S.N., Williams, S., & Lyon, T.D. (in press). Imprecision about body mechanics when child witnesses are questioned about sexual abuse. Journal of Interpersonal Violence.
- 82. Henderson, H.M. & Lyon, T.D. (2021). Increasing true reports without increasing false reports: Best practice interviewing methods and open-ended wh- questions. American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children Advisor, 33(1), 29-39.
- 81. Domagalski, K., Gongola, J., Clark, S.E., Quas, J.A., & Lyon, T.D. (2020). Detecting children’s true and false denials of wrongdoing: Effects of question type and base rate knowledge. Behavioral Sciences & the Law, 38, 612-629.
- 80. Lyon, T.D., Williams, S., Stolzenberg, S. N. (2020). Understanding expert testimony on child sexual abuse denial after New Jersey v. J.L.G.: Ground truth, disclosure suspicion bias, and disclosure substantiation bias. Behavioral Sciences & the Law, 38, 630-647.
- 79. Henderson, H.M., & Lyon, T.D. (2021). Children's signaling of incomprehension: The diagnosticity of practice questions during interview instructions. Child Maltreatment, 26(1), 95-104.
- 78. Gongola, J. Quas, J.A., Clark, S.E., & Lyon, T.D. (in press). Adults' difficulties in identifying concealment among children interviewed with the putative confession instruction. Applied Cognitive Psychology.
- 77. Klemfuss, J.Z., McWilliams, K., Henderson, H.M., Olaguez, A.P., & Lyon, T.D. (in press). Order of Encoding Predicts Young Children’s Responses to Sequencing Questions. Cognitive Development.
B. Publications in Law Reviews
10. Lawrence, J. A., Levin, D. B., Brady, K. L., Jhai, M. & Lyon, T. D., (2015). "Ohio v. Clark: Brief of Amicus Curiae American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children in Support of Petitioner." Psychology, Public Policy, and Law, 21, 365–373.
9. Lyon, T. D., & Stolzenberg, S. N. (2014). "Children's Memory for Conversations about Sexual Abuse: Legal and Psychological Implications." Roger Williams University Law Review, 19, 411-450. (Symposium: Child Witnesses in Sexual Abuse Cases).
C. Publications in Books
- 19. Lyon, T.D., McWilliams, K., & Williams, S. (2017). "Child Witnesses." In (N. Brewer & A.B. Douglass, eds.) Psychology & Law. New York, NY: Guilford.
- 18. Saywitz, K. J., Lyon, T. D., & Goodman, G. S. (i2018). "When Interviewing Children: A Review and Update." In J. Conte & B. Klika (Eds.), APSAC Handbook on Child Maltreatment (4th ed.). Newbury Park, CA: Sage.
- 17. Lyon, T. D. (2016). "Investigative Interviewing of the Child." In D. N. Duquette, A. H. Haralambie, & V. S. Sankaran (Eds.), Child Welfare Law and Practice: Representing Children, Parents, and State Agencies in Abuse, Neglect, and Dependency Cases (3rd ed., pp. 87-113). Denver, CO: Bradford.
- 16. Lyon, T. D. (2013). "Child Witnesses and Imagination: Lying, Hypothetical Reasoning, and Referential Ambiguity." In M. Taylor (Ed.), The Oxford handbook of the Development of Imagination (pp. 126-136). New York, NY: Oxford.
- 15. Lyon, T. D. (2011). "Assessing the Competency of Child Witnesses: Best Practice Informed by Psychology and Law." In M. Lamb, D. La Rooy, L. Malloy, & C. Katz (Eds.), Children’s Testimony: A Handbook of Psychological Research and Forensic Practice (pp. 69-85). Sussex, England: Wiley-Blackwell.
D. Contribution to Amicus Briefs
- 5. Lyon, T. D. (2014). "American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children in Support of Petitioner, Ohio v. Clark (merits)."
- 4. Lyon, T. D. (2014). "American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children in Support of Petitioner, Ohio v. Clark (petition for cert.)."
1. Lyon, T. D. (2003). "American Psychological Association, National Association of Counsel for Children, American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children, and California Professional Society on the Abuse of Children in Support of Respondent. Marion R. Stogner v. California."
E. Practitioner Guides
- 7. Lundon, G.M., Sargent, J.E., Henderson, H.M., Gongola, J., & Lyon, T.D. (2020). USC Child Interviewing Lab Tele-Forensic Interview Protocol.
F. Short Pieces
11. Lyon, T. D. (2012). Twenty-Five Years of Interviewing Research and Practice: Dolls, Diagrams, and the Dynamics of Abuse Disclosure. APSAC (American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children) Advisor, 24 (1-2), 14-19.
10. Lyon, T. D. (2009). Witnesses, Children As Legal. In R. Shweder, T. Bidell, A. Dailey, S. Dixon, P. Miller, & J. Modell (Eds.), The child: An Encyclopedic Companion (pp. 1036-1039). Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
G. Book Reviews
“Form and Substance in the 'Private Law' of Torts,” 14 Journal of Tort Law 45 (2021).
Robin Craig accepted the invitation of the Environmental Law Institute (Washington. D.C.) to participate in its new project on Communicating the Science of Sea Level Rise. The project will involve a webinar and a conference in late 2021, with Craig slated to speak on property, water law, and constitutional issues arising from adaptation to sea level rise.
Robin Craig accepted an invitation to join the Advisory Board of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee's Center for Water Policy.