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Grand Haven psychologist sentenced to jail for assault loses license to practice for at least 3 years

The psychologist was sentenced to jail last year for attempted fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct.

LANSING, Mich. — A Grand Haven psychologist who was sentenced to jail for attempted fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct has now had his psychology license suspended for at least three years, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel announced Tuesday.

The Board of Psychology’s Disciplinary Subcommittee approved a consent order and stipulation for William Kooistra on Dec. 17, suspending Kooistra’s license to practice psychology in Michigan for a minimum of three years. 

The subcommittee’s action also required Kooistra to pay a $25,000 fine. According to the attorney general's office, if Kooistra wants to return to practice, he must petition the Board of Psychology for reinstatement consistent with the requirements of the Public Health Code.

“Mr. Kooistra is a clear example of an authority figure who took advantage of his position by preying on a vulnerable victim, and he must be held accountable for those actions,” Nessel said Tuesday. “While jail sentences are appropriate for crimes of this nature, licensing sanctions are equally important.”

Kooistra owned and operated his own practice in Grand Haven. In 2014, he began treating a patient and -- under the guise of “body work therapy” -- initiated a sexual relationship with the patient, who terminated the therapy in 2018 and subsequently filed a police report.

RELATED: Grand Haven psychologist arrested on criminal sexual conduct charge

In March 2020, LARA summarily suspended Kooistra’s license and he was charged by the Ottawa County Prosecutor’s Office with fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct. In May, Kooistra pleaded guilty to attempted fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct and was sentenced to 45 days in jail by the 58th District Court.

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