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Are polygraph tests admissible?

On Behalf of | Jul 2, 2023 | Criminal Defense

If you are facing criminal charges, it’s essential to know that you have certain legal rights backed by law. Knowing and understanding how best to exercise them can make all the difference when going through such an overwhelming situation—especially if it involves potential incarceration for an alleged crime. 

One form of questioning that might take place is using a polygraph test. But what if you don’t want to take such a test? 

Why lie detector tests are considered pseudo-science

Polygraphs, often called lie detector tests, are devices or procedures used to measure and record physiological indicators such as breathing rate, blood pressure, perspiration and heart rate. They are commonly used by law enforcement to test the truthfulness of individuals in criminal investigations.

The theory behind the test is that when someone lies, their body will react differently than when they tell the truth. However, there is no scientific evidence that this is true, and many experts believe these tests are unreliable and inaccurate. Furthermore, research has shown that people can learn how to manipulate their physiology in order to pass a lie detector test, even if they are lying.

The Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution protects citizens from self-incrimination, meaning that individuals have the right to remain silent when questioned by police officers or other government officials. This includes refusing to take a polygraph test. Furthermore, they are not admissible in court as evidence.

If you are facing criminal charges, it’s imperative that you seek help immediately. Having someone present during questioning will ensure that your constitutional rights are protected.