You’ve probably seen a lie detector test in a movie at some point. Some serious man in a suit asking a series of strange questions – many of them obvious – to some nervous wreck hooked up to a machine that’s quietly spitting out a ream of paper covered in squiggles. Squiggles that are supposed to help investigators figure out if you’re lying or not. So does it work? And can cops here in Michigan make you take a polygraph test during a sex crime investigation?
Polygraphs machines are supposed to tell if you’re lying
That’s how they work. You get hooked up to the machine that monitors your heartbeat, blood pressure, respiration (your breathing) and even your skin conductivity. Some test equipment even measures whether you squeeze your butt muscles. All of these things are supposed to respond in a specific way when you don’t tell the truth. Said differently, when you are being deceptive, your body reacts differently than when you are speaking truthfully. And based on the answers you give, the polygraph operator is supposed to be able to tell if you’re being deceptive or not. But does it? Can a lie detector test really detect lies? Can a machine really figure out if you’re guilty of raping someone, or molesting a child?
There is a lot of controversy surrounding lie detector tests!
It sounds great in theory – the idea that when people lie their bodies experience certain physiological responses that they can’t control. A spike in blood pressure, an increase in respiration, or a marked increase in your pulse – all of these are supposed to be dead giveaways for liars, and people claiming to be innocent when they’re actually guilty. But believe it or not, they aren’t.
Not everyone’s responses to telling lies are the same across the board.
Research has proven that people don’t all respond in the same way to the act of lying. There are also several other factors that could influence the way a person responds to certain triggers in a conversation. For example, the responses that lie detector tests are supposed to pick up when someone is being dishonest, might also present in people who are afraid of a false detection, or feel passionately that they did not commit the crime. Why? Because although the machine will pick up on a marked physiological reaction, the reasoning behind the response may be something completely different. Sometimes, test results will vary because certain medications were taken. Pathological liars also test differently than most of us. However, experienced Michigan polygraph examiners are trained to know these things.
Polygraphs are sometimes used in sex crimes cases in Michigan.
In many sex crime cases, there is a shortage of physical evidence to support the alleged victim’s claims. And without corroborating evidence, it’s a case of he-said-she-said. So what can a cop do in that situation, when they only have one person’s word against the other? They can ask the suspect undergo a lie detector test in the hopes that the results will corroborate the alleged victim’s testimony. And with that in mind…
NEVER agree to a lie detector test without talking to your attorney first!
The results of lie detector tests can be unreliable depending on the particulars such as the examiner and the examinee. Test results are seldom admissible in court. Still there are other important uses for polygraph test results. When you’ve been accused of a sex crime or other serious felony in Michigan, and the cops want you to do polygraph test, DON’T! Call the experienced sex crimes defense attorneys at The Kronzek Firm instead, and make sure that your rights are being properly protected! We’re available 24/7 at 866 766 5245 (866 7No Jail), so make the right choice and defend your future! The Kronzek Firm’s defense team has been helping our clients in Michigan since the last century.