Wednesday, November 09, 2005

As If It Would Prove Anything

Yahoo News is reporting that Bob Dougherty, the man who is suing Home Depot for $3 million dollars because he was supposedly glued to a toilet seat in one of their stores, is willing to take a polygraph test to prove his claim.

I presume that Mr. Dougherty is taking this "bold" step in response to allegations that he attempted a similar claim against the town visitor's center in Nederland, CO, in 1976. At least one record -- belonging to the Colorado Bureau of Investigation -- shows that Dougherty plead guilty to filing a false police report in that incident.

Whether Dougherty could pass a polygraph test is immaterial, though. Polygraph test results are not admissable in court, and with good reason. The techniques for passing a polygraph test -- whether you're lying or not -- are freely available on the internet. Offering to take a polygraph test just gives the illusion of offended sincerity; it does nothing to demonstrate the truth of a claim.

1 comment:

Lord Runolfr said...

Denver television station KDVR paid for Dougherty to have his test, which he -- unsurprisingly -- passed.

As I said, this doesn't prove a thing. A polygraph test doesn't detect lies; it just measures several metabolic functions like respiration, pulse, and galvanic skin response, and the technician interprets high readings on these measures as lies. It is easy to fake your way through a polygraph test by artificially elevating your readings on truthful answers.