Lie Detection in Court Rooms

When you’re lying it makes your heart race. It makes you pant, it drives up your blood pressure and makes you drip sweat. A polygraph machine detects lies by looking for signs of these physiological changes. The accuracy of polygraph testing has long been controversial. An underlying problem is theoretical, there is no evidence that any pattern of physiological reaction is unique to deception. An honest person may be nervous when answering truthfully and an dishonest person may be non-anxious. Lie detectors tests have become a popular cultural icon from crime dramas to comedies to advertisement. The instrument typically used to conduct polygraph tests consists of a physiological recorder that assesses three indicators of autonomic arousal: heart rate/blood pressure, respiration and skin conductivity. Polygraph examinations often include a procedure called a “stimulation test,” which is a demonstration of the instrument’s accuracy in detecting deception. 

People who believe that the test is accurate enough to question subjects and have them be correct most of the time. Lie detectors are found on some of the most famous t.v shows today like Maury. It makes people have closure proving their loved ones are innocent or cheating. But a majority of the people in America believe that it’s an affective way to detect lies. Enthusiasts say that polygraphs accurately detect lies 80-90% of the time. “Boosters of the government’s scheme say the point is that using polygraph tests made more than twice as many “clinically significant disclosures”- information that could prompt changes in the way that are managed -as those did not.” Jane Wood, a forensic psychologist at the University of Kent who co-authored the report on the pilot, says that some offenders found the tests helpful as way to convince their families they were being honestly about their behavior. Some experts claimed that a high proportion of persons who “failed” the polygraph subsequently confessed to crimes. 

Another viewpoint on this topic is that the lie detector test is not accurate nor reliable. “There is no test that can detect lies… The process in which the questions are asked and the sequence of the questions may affect how a person reacts.” “Courts don’t have to admit lie detector test, according to a U.S Supreme Court case that specifies how courts deal with scientific evidence. Instead, individuals judges have discretion to decide if a polygraph will be admitted based on certain criteria” There are many good liars. A polygraph like stated above, is not a lie detector test. It detects physiological expressions associated with lying in some people, such as racing heart and sweaty fingers. 

Sixty three sex offenders back in jail after lie detector tests. “Pedophiles and rapists are aught out breaking the terms of their release from prison after undergoing new polygraph tests, Ministry of Justice Figures show. “In the past year, 492 people convicted of serious sex offenses such as rape and child abuse in England and Wales have been forced to take polygraph tests under the terms of their release from custody “on license” “The offender, who has not been named, was found to have lied during the polygraph test but the results still revealed that he had been using the internet.” 

Lie detection is not an affection way to measure if someone is lying. There are too many factors to keep in mind when coming to doing a polygraph tests. We cannot incriminate someone due to a lie detector test. Some people are naturally anxious and others are calm.