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  1. #1
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    Has any suspected family member failed 2 Lie Detector tests and been found innocent?

    I'm trying to see statistically if any family member suspected of harming a child has failed (should be failed above not filed!) 2 lie detector tests and then still been found innocent (or cleared of any wrongdoing). Put your research skills to the test and post the link please
    Last edited by just; 09-22-2010 at 11:23 AM.

  2. #2
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    Just, you can edit the title of the thread within the 60 minute edit window by hitting "edit" and then "go advanced."

    HTH.

  3. #3
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    As to the OP question, the case of Bill Wegerle comes to mind. He was the main (and only for a long time) suspect in the murder of his wife, and failed two LDTs, and was later exonerated by the discovery that his wife was actually a victim of the BTK serial killer.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2005/...in890980.shtml

    ETA: Granted, this was in the 1980s, so one would hope the technology is better now, but, still, this case does give me a bit of pause in assigning too much value to LDTs. MOO.

    ETA2: Searching for theories/explanations of why Wergerle failed his tests, I found some things (not really worth linking - just forums and blogs, mostly) that suggested he was so distraught the findings were off, and/or being told repeatedly that he killed her and that he failed the first test screwed up the findings. I have also seen it suggested that being re-tested rises the anxiety enough to mess with results. All of this should be stuff an experienced LDT tech could adjust for, I should think, but one never knows. I couldn't find an official explanation for his failure, sadly.

    ETA3: Bill himself claims it was just stress: "The police suspected Bill of the murder early on—especially after he failed two lie detector tests, the first given by police and a second by a polygraph expert hired by Bill himself. “The individual that I hired to take the polygraph, he said he believed what I was saying was true. He said it's just the stress that I was under,” Bill says." (From above link.)
    Last edited by WhyaDuck?; 09-22-2010 at 11:26 AM.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by WhyaDuck? View Post
    As to the OP question, the case of Bill Wegerle comes to mind. He was the main (and only for a long time) suspect in the murder of his wife, and failed two LDTs, and was later exonerated by the discovery that his wife was actually a victim of the BTK serial killer.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2005/...in890980.shtml

    ETA: Granted, this was in the 1980s, so one would hope the technology is better now, but, still, this case does give me a bit of pause in assigning too much value to LDTs. MOO.

    ETA2: Searching for theories/explanations of why Wergerle failed his tests, I found some things (no worth linking - just forums and blogs, mostly) that suggested he was so distraught the findings were off, and/or being told repeatedly that he killed her and that he failed the first test screwed up the findings. I have also seen it suggested that being re-tested rises the anxiety enough to mess with results. All of this should be stuff an experienced LDT tech could adjust for, I should think, but one never knows. I couldn't find an official explanation for his failure, sadly.
    Thanks that's very interesting! I'm sure there are others. Hopefully some smart sleuther has another example? Maybe there are times when LE has told the public someone has failed but they're really passed? Carl Probyn comes to mind (Jaycee Dugard's stepdad). I can find where it says he took the LD test but not the results. That poor man! And again, this was 20 years ago, so we do hope systems are in place to prevent this but hopefully we'll get some more responses to get statistics on this.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by just View Post
    Thanks that's very interesting! I'm sure there are others. Hopefully some smart sleuther has another example? Maybe there are times when LE has told the public someone has failed but they're really passed? Carl Probyn comes to mind (Jaycee Dugard's stepdad). I can find where it says he took the LD test but not the results. That poor man! And again, this was 20 years ago, so we do hope systems are in place to prevent this but hopefully we'll get some more responses to get statistics on this.
    I remember in my criminal justice courses, I learned that it was not uncommon to tell someone they failed in order to encourage a confession, particularly when the results were inconclusive.

  6. #6
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    I guess the real problem I have with LDT is LE themselves. It is not against the law for LE to lie to you during an investigation. Therefore, technically, they can lie and tell you that you failed certain portions even if you didn't, just to rattle you.

    I'm no TH supporter by any standards, but the only way we know that TH failed her LDTs is through Kaine. He said after the first test, TH told them she had failed. Whether she did or not, I just don't know.

    There was a case where a father was convicted of murdering his daughter while his wife was in Chicago with her girlfriends. Police told him he failed his poly when he hadn't. LE coerced his confession. The case was overturned on appeals. Can't remember what the man's name is off hand.

  7. #7
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    (I'm also trying to find the show 60 Minutes did on polygraphs a few years ago - IIRC, that was a really good piece.)

    ETA: It seems they might still have them at antipolygraph.org, but my Quicktime is taking a personal day, it appears. (There are two of them, expose 1 in 1986 and expose II done in 2001.) https://antipolygraph.org/blog/?p=110 (first one) https://antipolygraph.org/blog/?p=107 (second one)

    ETA2: Sorry, I didn't mean to turn this thread into a "let's have a general discussion about LDTs" - carry on answering the OP.
    Last edited by WhyaDuck?; 09-22-2010 at 12:25 PM. Reason: edit to add, as noted, also to add video links

  8. #8
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    I just watched this case on MSNBC the other night...Death of a Beauty Queen.

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/24433365/

    Her boyfriend was found not guilty (even though he "supposedly" failed his poly miserably.

    The reporter updated at the end and said the fingerprint tied to the condom wrapper belonged to a close neighbor who had previously been convicted of sexual assault and not the boyfriend, Kevin Jones.

  9. #9
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    Suppose TH failed one (or more) questions about knowing who took Kyron? Suppose she suspected KH did and either suppressed it or lied? Who knows from what we've read in the MSM, I sure don't.

    Simple conjecture, and my opinion only.

  10. #10
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    If she really did pass would they request another two polys? It is possible they had more questions than originally, but surely the lst one asked the main questions regarding Kyron whereabouts, etc. Do we know if Kaine took more than than just one? Remember the FBI was the one to administer them.



  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dee10 View Post
    If she really did pass would they request another two polys? It is possible they had more questions than originally, but surely the lst one asked the main questions regarding Kyron whereabouts, etc. Do we know if Kaine took more than than just one? Remember the FBI was the one to administer them.
    I don't know the answer to this, but I do think that if the results were open to interpretation as possibly inconclusive in any way, combined with the examiners'/agencies' certainty of someone's guilt, I do think they would continue to order tests (within reason, and I don't think 3 or 4 is too extreme) until they found the answer they were looking for. This is purely my opinion, though.

    ETA: To be clear, this is not claiming a witch hunt or a frame job - just saying that if someone (even in the FBI) felt strongly that someone was guilty they would keep working at it until they could prove it, because they think that is the right thing to do.

  12. #12
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    A failed poly

    This was not a murder case, and it was not twice, but I think it's something to ponder....

    My X had to take a poly as part of a job application.
    They told him he failed, and they said that the results were that he was an alcoholic and a drug addict.

    We were stunned. Neither of us had ever taken any drug of any kind whatsoever, and all he ever drank was a few beers once in a while.
    It was found later that his blood pressure tended to be high on occasion.

    Fear, nervousness, and pain or discomfort, will raise blood pressure considerably. Even being rushed will do it.

    Also physical activity, such as walking. Patients in the hospital are not supposed to have their BP taken if they have just come back from a walk, or a session at rehab. It should not be taken until they have been sitting (or lying down,) for at least 15 minutes.

    Many aides will take it anyway, because they are rushed for time, or simply because they missed this in their training.

    Personally I think that if they are going to administer a poly, they should have someone who is qualified, to take the person's BP first, and if it's high, to wait until it is lowered to within normal limits.

    If the person has cronic high BP, I believe a poly should not be administered.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dee10 View Post
    If she really did pass would they request another two polys? It is possible they had more questions than originally, but surely the lst one asked the main questions regarding Kyron whereabouts, etc. Do we know if Kaine took more than than just one? Remember the FBI was the one to administer them.
    Just a guess, but because they were inconclusive? And or, to put pressure on her?

  14. #14
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    If I might flip the original equation, here is a link to a guilty party that passed a polygraph.

    http://www.prnewswire.com/news-relea...-89107132.html

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dee10 View Post
    If she really did pass would they request another two polys? It is possible they had more questions than originally, but surely the lst one asked the main questions regarding Kyron whereabouts, etc. Do we know if Kaine took more than than just one? Remember the FBI was the one to administer them.
    The FBI administered the tests? Instead of the LE agency with local jurisdiction, i.e. MCSO? I didn't know that!

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