Burt Templet’s shooting death at the hands of his teenage son, Anthony, stunned the state of Louisiana in 2019. The young man claimed that his father attacked him, so he fired in self-defense. Netflix’s ‘I Just Killed My Dad’ is a docuseries that focuses on Anthony’s case and delves into his childhood. It was alleged that Burt put Anthony through years of abuse after kidnapping him from his birth mother, Teresa Thompson. Dr. Kathryn Lawing, a clinical and forensic psychologist, was brought on board by the defense to evaluate Anthony. So, if you’re curious to find out more, here’s what we know.
Who is Dr. Kathryn Lawing?
Once Anthony was arrested, he told the police about not getting along with his father and how he was subjected to years of abuse and neglect. However, at the time, the prosecution felt there was no proof because no police or medical reports pointing to such abuse existed. So, Anthony’s lawyer, Jarrett Ambeau, hired Dr. Kathryn Lawing to perform Anthony’s psychological evaluation to show that the abuse did take place.
On the show, Kathryn said she aimed to understand Anthony’s mental state in the time leading up to the shooting. Through her interviews, she learned that Anthony was repeatedly beaten and was always on edge because of his father’s unpredictable behavior. Kathryn also realized that Burt was affected by his then-wife, Susan Templet, leaving him. As per the show, Burt began drinking more, and that caused more friction between him and Anthony.
Kathryn also talked about how Anthony was isolated from the rest of the world; he was not allowed to have any friends and never received any medical care. On the show, she mentioned how Burt always had a loaded gun around him in the days leading up to the shooting. Anthony, at the time, was scared his father would shoot him because he never had a problem beating him all those years.
Where is Dr. Kathryn Lawing Today?
On the show, Kathryn mentioned that Anthony felt he had no other option but to shoot Burt because he saw that as the only way to end the abuse that he dealt with. Her evaluation revealed that Anthony was truthful about what he said and had all the psychological markers of abuse. Ultimately, her evaluation played a significant role in helping Anthony avoid prison time.
Kathryn Lawing has a master’s degree and a Ph.D. in Applied Developmental Psychology from the University of New Orleans, Louisiana. She has written several scientific journal articles and presented at various conferences, with her areas of interest being juvenile justice and the treatment of young offenders, among other things. Not just that, Kathryn completed a post-doctoral fellowship, receiving training in Forensic Evaluation and Psychotherapy.
Currently, Kathryn splits her time between Colorado and Louisiana, where she practices. The psychologist is much sought after as a subject matter expert, and her extensive experience involves research-based approaches for clinical evaluation, treatment of anxiety and OCD, and forensic psychology. While offering her professional services, Kathryn is inclusive of sexuality and the gender identities/expressions her clients identify with. Apart from that, Kathryn is an adjunct professor at the Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center and has previously worked in local community health clinics.
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