Evidence 101

EVIDENCE 101...Wherever you go, there you are...

Saturday, September 27, 2014


Let's talk shop.

Common name: Lie detector test.

Official name: Polygraph

  1. Junque science?
  2. Interview and Interrogation tool?
  3. Truth testing?
Polygraphs are used for pre-employment purposes and during employment or promotion periods in law enforcement or positions with security clearance, etc.

They have an omniscient quality about them just in mentioning of the terms.

It makes every one of its victims who sit in the chair shiver, sweat, and fret. Possibly true. Maybe not?

Mission accomplished.

So what is it really?

It's a tool.

An excellent polygraphist can use the test to determine deception and warrant further interview or interrogate (prying) a subject whether for employment purposes or criminal uses. Even if deception isn't detected by the test, a polygraphist could use trickery by suggesting a candidate or suspect had "problems" with a certain question or such.

The tests are not admissible in a criminal trial.

At the same time, it is amazing how the average lay person puts a lot of credibility into the test.

I have seen the best liar pass and the most honest fail.

So really what is it? How can people beat them? Why do honest people fail?

Being a polygraphist takes a special person and a good interviewer. There are weeks of classes and continued training.

I have seen the good, the bad, and the ugly.

The test measures changes in breathing, heart rate, body movement. The polygraphist watches everything you do and how you answer as well as what the test measures.

It can't see inside your mind. Neither can the polygraphist.

If you control your body, you control the test.

Fear. It changes our breathing, our heart rate. We sweat. We move. We squirm.

Everyone is nervous during a polygraph test. Even if they are innocent.


Not for some.

What if they aren't nervous? Hmm... red flags? A master manipulator? Good question.

Say it to any cop...they are not a fan. It has nothing to do with their integrity or honesty...it just makes us squirm.

Similar to that of mentioning boogers to me...

Oh, yes, I have passed every one...


Old NFO said...

And a 'number' of organizations 'train' people to beat them... Just sayin...

Well Seasoned Fool said...

Never had one, but have been interrogated by a suspicious girlfriend. (and passed, thank you)

Momma Fargo said...

Old NFO...so true, so true! However, the common officer is not. Well, I would say most of them aren't. LOL

WSF-That is great practice!

Bob G. said...

Momma Fargo:
Yeah...took the PG-test (LONG time ago)...passed it, even though I was nervous - guess the poly guy knew that.
I look at it as not totally conclusive.
I mean you CAN Lie and still pass (like you said) if you are GOOD at lying and can control your demeanor and heart rate.
(guess those Tibetan Monks can get away with ALL
kinds of stuff...lol).

Way easier to speak the truth, anyway...don't have to remember all the damn lies.

Good post.
Stay safe down here