Amberson pleads not guilty to all counts of lewd conduct

Claremont psychologist Thomas Gary Amberson, PsyD, pled not guilty last week to recent accusations of child molestation.

Mr. Amberson plead his innocence after the District Attorney’s Office charged him with 4 counts of lewd conduct on a child and one count of possession of child pornography last December. The arraignment, originally scheduled for late December, was pushed back as Mr. Amberson’s attorneys desired more time to look over their client’s case before entering a plea, according to police.

Troubles began for the 56-year-old resident of Upland with a psychological practice in Claremont after a 9-year-old male alleged that Mr. Amberson had made inappropriate contact with him during a counseling session. It was the second time such an allegation has been made about the psychologist, accused of inappropriate contact with a 13-year-old male in 2008. Though the District Attorney did not file in the 2008 case due to lack of evidence, the incident will be included as part of the latest criminal filing.  

Claremont police officers say they conducted a search of Mr. Amberson’s business on November 15 following the most recent allegation. During the search, detectives claim a work computer containing child pornography was found. Mr. Amberson was arrested and released later that day after posting $100,000 bail.

Mr. Amberson has been a practicing psychologist for more than 20 years with experience counseling both children and adults. He specializes in children and teen issues such as Attention Deficit Disorder and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and offers evaluations in learning problems, parenting, abuse, depression, stress, grief and anxiety/panic disorder. He received his Doctorate in Psychology from the Rosemead School of Psychology and became licensed in California in March 1987, according to the California Board of Psychology. He maintains a practice off Foothill Boulevard in Claremont.

He will return to the Pomona Courthouse on March 6 at which time a date for a preliminary hearing will be set.

—Beth Hartnett


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