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Robert V Owen
State pays millions for contract psychologists to keep up with Jessica's Law

A 2006 law intended to crack down on sex offenders has proved a bonanza for a small group of private psychologists and psychiatrists, 14 of whom billed California taxpayers last year for a half a million dollars or more each, a Times investigation found. Among the 79 contractors hired by the state to evaluate sex offenders, the top earner was Robert Owen, a Central Coast psychologist who pulled in more than $1.5 million in 2007, according to state records reviewed by The Times. That's equivalent to working 100 hours per week for 52 weeks at nearly $300 per hour -- top-scale in the private sector. The No. 2 earner, psychologist Dawn Starr, billed the state $1.1 million in 2007,...

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