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"Deception" on Polygraph but I did not lie!

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Posted about 3 years ago

 

Hello everyone.  I'm a Texas communications officer with roughly 13 years of experience.  I had put in an application with TXDPS for an open communications officer position.  The process requires a polygraph.


When I got there we did the pre interview.  We went over my packet and he asked me all the questions.  On a few, mostly questions about sexual offenses and drug offenses that made me a little uncomfortable, he'd stop and ask what i was thinking.  I was honest and would tell him I was either disturbed by the question or would admit to some minor experimentation with drugs when I was still a minor and some small thefts when I was a juvenile.  He said he didn't care about any of that and we moved on.


We went into the first section of the test, drug use, I answered all my questions asked truthfully.  When the test was over he wrote some notes, slammed his clipboard down and told me I failed.  He again asked me about drug use and I reiterated that other than what we had already discussed there was nothing more.  He said we'd come back to it.


We started the second section.  Property Crimes.  I was experiencing some axiety after the first section.  I again answered everything truthfully.  Same deal as before.  He wrote some notes, slammed his clipboard on the desk and told me I failed.  He then demaned to know what I was hiding and what I was thinking.  I again assured him I was not being evasive.


We went into the third section.  Personal crime.  By this point I was really rattled but maintained my composure with the exception of some heavy breathing.  Again he slammed down his clipboard and said I failed.  He asked me what was going on and demanded to know what I was hiding as far as personal crime.  I told him that I was not hiding anything, that both he and his machine were intimidating and stressing me, and that I had determined no matter what answers I gave I was going to be accused of lying even though I was not.  He contiued to badger me demand answers.  He wanted to know what personal crime I was hiding.  Had I ever commited a sex crime?  Who had I done harm to in the past?  Finally, I recalled a fight I'd gotten into with someone 5 years prior where I defended myself from being swung at.  We were both intoxicated and it was determined to be a mutual combat situation.  Nobody went to jail and there wasn't even a report made on it.  I had been the one to notify the police.  He was furious at this point.  He accused me of intentionally omitting that from my packet and that all the other "lies" were because I was hiding that one event. 


He failed me stating "Deception Indicated" and noted down the incident I spoke stating I "Confessed" to it.  He never bothered to go back to these other questions he claimed I was lying about and when I asked why not he claimed I failed all of those because my brain knew I was lying about the fight.  I find that hard to believe since this was four hours into the thing and I didn't even recall the fight until he kept pushing me trying to force an answer on anything out of me.  He gave me this statement about how they won't deny me based on polygraph alone but then again accused me of trying to hide information from them.  He claimed he was going to "do my best to fix this but you left it out."  Then he gave some story about how it depended on who the other applicants are.


Sorry for the long story but I felt some background was necessary.  My question is in your opinion am I done?  I figure my chances of getting this position are nill now because of this polygraph.  The unnerving thing is I was honest with everything he asked me.  I did not lie about anything and I'll go to my grave saying that.

Cert_max600_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

Well, I suppose it all just depends on the department that you are trying to get into and how their candidate pool plays out. You don't have to lie to show deception...it's two different things. If you show any type of deception during a polygraph, how can a department count on you to not be that way during an investigation. Also, I am questioning why the polygraph technician is discussing it with you in the first place???? that isn't their job. So, that being said, forgive me for saying that in my opinion something smells fishy!!!


PL Mentoring Team Member

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White_shirt_max50

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Rated +1 | Posted about 3 years ago

 

Where is retleo when we need him.

Dogs_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

Our polygraphist used to put me in the chair to make certain everything  was working well.  He called me a "textbook responder", and asked me if I was involved in a bank robbery on the bank next to our building.  We both knew I wasn't, as I was in the chair, but the polygraph said "deception".    Just to make everything clear, the "bank robbery" was  just made up by our polygraphist  at that minute to test the equipment.


Someone out there must know about polygraphs, I certainly don't know enough about it. 

Silver_warrior_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

Just got done reading your "story" and found it to be very interesting. . . . more along the lines of tactics.


First off, I am neither a psychology major, nor was I a polygraph operator while I was in the department.  However, I was able to watch all of the polys that I had requested for and none. . . .and I mean NONE of the examiners used this technique.  From what I witnessed the poly has a couple of different parts.  Obviously, the operator has to be familiar with the incident prior to even meeting the individual to be tested.  When they meet, there is the normal chit chat to explain a little about the equipment and how it works. . . .more or less.


During the course of the pre-interview, the operator gathers any information that may have been left out of the report.  If there are any inconsistancies, the operator starts prying on those points.  During this prying, the operator may even get to the interrogation of the individual.  Purpose is to see if they can get the confession without even turning the instrument on.


If it comes to hooking the individual up, the individual is already "pumped up" or tweakin'. . . .HOWEVER, in EVERYONE of the polys that I witnessed, the individual was read EVERY QUESTION WORD FOR WORD PRIOR TO THE TEST.  NO SURPRISES!  Once the test began, the operator asked every question in a calm voice, individual answered and there was a rest period between questions.  The list of questions were gone through 3 times to make sure the reaction was the same for each test.  Afterwards then there was the post interview.


NEVER had I seen the tactic you described.  Three things come to mind. . . .1)  New type of tactic that is geared to fail the individual.  2)  Poor operator.  3)  You passed the test and he was just messin' with you.  While I don't want to get your hopes up, I would pick #3.  The operator is not your friend!  They are there to do what it takes to shake the truth out of you, Period, end of story.  They don't "fix" things after the test, they are to ONLY report the results to whomever needs the results.  If he is going to "fix" it for you (depending on the other candidates) that is thing that gets me to scratching my head wondering "Why?".  Remember, they don't have to hire anyone if the candidate pool is too shallow.  If necessary, they can. . and probably should, wait until the next batch of candidates come around to see if there is anyone better there.


Again, I already stated that I am not the expert here. But, this is my best guess. . .right, wrong or indifferent.


I won't be wronged, I won't be insulted, and I won't be laid a hand on. I don't do these things to other people and I expect the same from them.

John Bernard Books, from "The Shootist"

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

Well, he showed me the form that said "Deception Indicated" at the very top and had me sign it.  It had the confession I supposedly made on it too.  So, I'm not sure about your theory of passing and just being messed with.  I kept asserting that I didn't intentionally omit anything and didn't even remember the incident until I had been pushed over and over on the question.

1282013_012_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

I just recently took my polygraph as well and the way that Beowulf_7 describes the process is the way it happened in my case. I too was asked every single question that was going to be asked in the actual exam before I was hooked up to the "box". I was told that this is done so that there are no surprises.


I also believe that there is a handbook that states the procedures that an examiner has to take on an exam, as far as asking all questions before hand.

Th_detective_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

policelink.monster.com/topics/80485-pre-employment-polygraph-read-before-you-ask/posts


There is definitely something "Fishy" in the scenario that you have presented.  In my 18 years as a polygraph examiner I have NEVER come across an examiner who "slammed down his clipboard" and berated the test subject during the actual examination.  The way you describe this situation makes absolutely no sense.  Take a look at the link above and if the examinaer did act in the way that you have stated then I would go back to that agency and request a second polygraph with a different examiner (or I would find an independent examiner and pay for my own test).  Definitely some "Red Flags" flying here.


"Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren't used to an environment where excellence is expected."
Steve Jobs

Retleo (MODERATOR #8)
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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

Thank you for the advice.  I probably should ask to see if I can get another examination.

Th_policeavatar_2__max50

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

A bit late on this one.


I'm responding to the quality of the poly artist, not the applicant. I also in all my years have never seen or heard of one doing anything close to what has been described here. If it is true. Perhaps it was a contract examiner who was inexeperienced.


As far as you yourself hiring one, that will not fly.


""Life is a storm.. You will bask in the sunlight one moment, be shattered on the rocks the next. What makes you a man is what you do when that storm comes"
Alexander Dumas-The Count of Monte Christo

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

The guy was a CID officer for the state.  He was bragging to me at the beginning how he's been doing it for a long time and teaches it also.  I don't know how much was truth and how much was BS just to intimidate me.  There are people at the department I'm with now that have heard of him also.


I haven't got a rejection letter YET, but I'm starting to figure it's over.


I've pretty much given up.  I was really wanting the position but it looks like I got screwed.  Oh well, there are other jobs and the agency I'm with plans on keeping me around for for the time being from what I see.  Just got to find another dream job I guess.

Silver_warrior_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

As John Belushi said in Animal House:


Over?  Over?  Was it over when the German's bombed Pearl Harbor?  AND IT AIN'T OVER NOW!  'Cause when the going gets tough. . . . . . . .the tough get going!


Not quite sure why you are "giving up" at this point. . . .the fat lady ain't even warming up yet!  Wait until it becomes official.  Even with a letter, there could be redresses available to you.  I hope you don't give up this easy in a fight for your life!


I won't be wronged, I won't be insulted, and I won't be laid a hand on. I don't do these things to other people and I expect the same from them.

John Bernard Books, from "The Shootist"

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Rate This | Posted about 3 years ago

 

Oh don't get me wrong.  I know it's not official until I get a letter, but I'm not going to get myself all stressed out until I know what's actually happening.

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Rate This | Posted 10 months ago

 

 Brak583... 


About your poly... What was the outcome? Were you hired? I ask because I took mine yesterday and was told that there was deception indicated even though I know that I did not lie. What was the verdict for you? Were you hired? Thanks in advance. 


 


Ryan