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Cobb prosecutor: Child psychologist, molester filmed upskirt videos

The 2XL black Cobb County jail jumpsuit billowed as 180-pound Jonathan Gersh sat down in court April 27.

Gersh was there for a bond hearing before Cobb Superior Court Judge J. Stephen Schuster.

Gersh, a 37-year-old psychologist, has been in jail since Valentine’s Day for allegedly molesting a nine-year-old girl and posting photos of it online in Cobb.

What complicated the matter of his bond Friday is a set of charges in the Pensacola, Florida, area where he is accused of drugging his ex-wife and masturbating while standing over her as she slept.

“I appreciate this is a complex issue,” Schuster said before the prosecution had even spoken.

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Prosecutor Hannah Palmquist said that a forensic analysis finished hours earlier indicated Gersh had recorded upskirt videos of women and girls in public places like Target and Starbucks.

One video that lasted 4 minutes and 11 seconds showed Gersh filming up the black dress of a woman inside what Palmquist said is likely a Starbucks in Pensacola.

In another instance, store surveillance video shows Gersh adjusting a camera under a table.

Palmquist said Gersh also went to water parks to take pictures of girls in bathing suits.

It isn’t clear where all the pictures and videos were taken, including whether any were taken in metro Atlanta.


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“We are looking at a pattern of escalating behavior,” Palmquist said.

Schuster asked attorneys for a basic rundown of all the allegations Gersh faces in Georgia and Florida before determining bond.

As it turns out, Gersh was on bond for the Florida charges when the alleged molestation occurred in Cobb.

Gersh travels to his ex-wife’s home near Pensacola to visit the children they have together.


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His ex-wife had suspected for months that he had been drugging her, including when Gersh came to Florida to spend Halloween 2016 with their children.

The woman told police that she woke up one night about that time to Gersh standing over her performing the sex act as her 8-year-old son slept next to her.

Another night she woke up groggy with blue powder she believed was crushed Valium, a prescription sleeping aid, in her teeth and her right eyebrow “crusted with a white residue on it.”

The alleged molestation and posting of the picture happened in an unincorporated part of Cobb sometime between January and October of 2017, according to a police warrant.

This shows a cached version of the now-defunct website indicating Jonathan Gersh as the clinical director of Intown Psychological Associates. (intownpsych.com)

Palmquist said Cobb police were notified about the images by Homeland Security. She said the Queensland Police Service in Australia had tipped off the federal agents that the photos has been posted online via a Russian website.

The prosecutor said Gersh became evasive when Cobb police began searching his home and office: sleeping at friends’ homes, using burner phones and telling a friend —who is also a psychologist to get rid of his electronics in “random dumpsters.”

Gersh’s Buckhead attorney Richard Grossman denied those claims saying he was in contact with law enforcement early on.

Grossman said his client wasn’t a flight risk and should be given bond. Grossman argued that Gersh first moved to the Atlanta area with his family when he was 7 from Mississippi and decided to open his practice here after medical training in California.

Gersh’s family was in the courtroom, but didn’t speak to reporters.


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Gersh has been licensed to practice psychology in Georgia since April 2011, according to the secretary of state’s website.

About that time, Georgia business records show Gersh became involved with Intown Psychological Associates, which offers psychological testing, counseling and therapy.

A cached version of the now-defunct website shows Gersh as the clinical director, listed at the top of the staff page. The website lists the main office in downtown Atlanta, with others in Marietta and Conyers.


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With Gersh in jail since Valentine’s Day, the practice has not been operating, Palmquist said.

Judge Schuster made no decision on bond, asking Gersh’s attorney to figure out with Florida authorities how to handle the two sets of charges.

During the proceedings Gersh didn’t acknowledge his family, sitting as close to him as they could.

As he stood to leave the courtroom, his jumpsuit swelled with air again, cinched at his waist by the silver chain that encircled him.


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