Clinicians

Dr. Shannon Edwards, Psy. D.

Dr. Shannon Edwards is a Clinical Forensic Psychologist in Pittsburgh. She has extensive forensic and clinical experience working with juveniles, adults, and families. Unique to Pennsylvania and the Pittsburgh area, are her eight years of academic training in Clinical Forensic Psychology, which involved rigorous law and psychology specialty coursework. Dr. Edwards’ academic foundation and applied training provided her necessary ethical and clinical tools, allowing her to competently practice the specialization of law and psychology’s intersection.

Dr. Edwards’ evaluative experience includes providing parental capacity, child custody, and general mental health evaluations for Family and Juvenile Court; provision of wrongful death, immigration, and personal injury evaluations for Civil Court; and delivering a broad range of evaluations for Criminal Court including competency to stand trial evaluations, criminal responsibility evaluations, mitigating circumstance evaluations, juvenile life without parole evaluations, sexual offender evaluations, and general psychological evaluations. She is available for retention in jury consultation and selection, having provided those services to adjudication and sentencing Courts.

Dr. Edwards provides co-parenting therapy, reunification therapy, supervised visitation, and other court-involved therapy for Family Court. She provides expert testimony to Family Court, regarding the aforementioned individuals’ progress, serving the best interest of the child. Dr. Edwards has conducted individual and group therapy involving individuals diagnosed with serious mental illnesses (SMI), provided evaluation and treatment to individuals mandated to a state hospital forensic unit, and served as the Director of Mental Health at the Allegheny County Jail.

Focus

Until recently, Dr. Edwards was the only licensed psychologist in Pennsylvania with eight years of foundational academic training in forensic psychology. As such, she opened a private practice in downtown Pittsburgh to serve the local community and beyond. However, she emphatically announces her best friend from graduate school, Dr. Lindsey Wilner, has opened her own forensic private practice in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania (http://www.drlindseywilner.com). Having been academically trained in law and psychology, they are both able to competently provide psycho-legal services to Pennsylvanians.

Dr. Edwards has provided expert services to other counties within the Commonwealth including Butler, Erie, Lancaster, Mercer,Westmoreland, and Washington counties. Dr. Edwards has been qualified as an expert in Pennsylvania and Illinois courts.

Samantha Etzi

Samantha Etzi is a Licensed Social Worker in Pittsburgh. She has experience working with juveniles, adults, and families whom interact with the court systems. She is a recent graduate of the Master of Social Work program at The University of Pittsburgh. Samantha has extensive knowledge and experience in conducting biopsychosocial assessments for individuals in Family and Criminal Court. She has expanded upon her academic and clinical training with various internships with government agencies, such as the Federal Public Defender, Allegheny County Juvenile Probation, and Allegheny County Court Records Civil Division.

Samantha is licensed to provide mental health evaluations to the Juvenile Court regarding recommendations for treatment and placement options for youth offenders. Her prior experience in Juvenile Probation has allowed her to have individual interactions with juveniles, while learning about the available rehabilitative options in Western Pennsylvania. Samantha has experience in therapy, as well as an understanding of the role of mental health experts in the court system.

Samantha is also trained to provide co-parenting counseling in individualized and group settings. Samantha has aided in research and composition of a parenting skills training course, as she is aware of frequent daily tasks that parents encounter every day. Additionally, she is aware of the common miscommunications and disagreements co-parents confront during and after separation in order to best provide for their child(ren). She has experience in conflict resolution and familial communication.