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School of Medicine Columbia

Faculty and Staff

Richard Lesesne Frierson, M.D.

Title: Clinical Professor of Neuropsychiatry & Behavioral Science
Vice Chair of Education
Department: Neuropsychiatry & Behavioral Science
School of Medicine Columbia
Phone: 803-434-2808

Neuropsychiatry & Behavioral Sci
15 Medical Park, Columbia, SC 29203


Medical Education
University of South Carolina School of Medicine, MD, 1988

William S. Hall Psychiatric Institute, 1992

William S. Hall Psychiatric Institute, 1993


Board Certifications
American Board of Psychiatry & Neurology, 1994
American Board of Psychiatry & Neurology - Forensic Psychiatry, 1994
Recertified in Forensic Psychiatry, 2013


Dr. Frierson is Professor of Psychiatry and Vice Chair for Education in the Department of Neuropsychiatry and Behavioral Science at the University of South Carolina School of Medicine. He is the program director for the Forensic Psychiatry Fellowship and Medical Director for the University of South Carolina Professionals Wellness Program. He received a Bachelor of Music Degree and Medical Doctorate from the University of South Carolina and completed psychiatric residency and a forensic psychiatry fellowship at the William S. Hall Psychiatric Institute. Dr. Frierson is past President of the South Carolina Psychiatric Association and a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association. He is Co-Chair of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Laws Education Committee. He is President of the Association of Directors of Forensic Psychiatry Fellowships (ADFPF). He is the recipient of the 2006 AAPL national award for Best Teacher in a Forensic Psychiatry Fellowship, the 2009 Stephen L. Von Riesen Lecturer of Merit Award from the National College of District Attorneys and the 2014 Red Apple Award from the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law. He has been named a Best Doctor since 2007.

As an author of several book chapters and numerous peer-reviewed publications, Dr. Frierson has written in the areas of psychiatric and neurological characteristics of murder defendants, low IQ and mental retardation among murder defendants, competency to stand trial evaluations of geriatric defendants, gender-based prosecutions, suicide risk assessment, juror understanding of mental illness verdicts, management of insanity acquittees, judges' views of civil commitment and lawyers' understanding of mental illness and attitudes towards mentally ill defendants.

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.