“Lying Technology: Now in Morgan County [Missouri]: New-Age Lie Detector Measures Micro Tremors”

Marsha Paxson gullibly reports on Computerized Voice Stress Analysis (CVSA) for the Lake Sun Leader of Camdenton, Missouri. Excerpt:

MORGAN COUNTY – The same type of lie detection machine used to test former President Bill Clinton when he claimed not to have had sex with Monica Lewinksy is now being used in the arsenal against crime in Morgan County and Laurie.

Morgan County Sheriff’s Department Investigator Greg Martin said he and three Laurie police officers are now certified to use a Computer Voice Stress Analyzer.

“It is a specially-designed program that works on a Toshiba laptop computer,” Martin said. “Each machine has one key that is required for operation. No other key can open it and only trained eyes can decipher what the test markings mean.”

A small microphone with a clip is attached to the suspect’s clothing while the tester asks questions.

“While a standard lie detector measures physiological changes when a subject gives an answer, the CVSA registers micro tremors in the human voice,” Martin said. “We can determine deception when there is a lack of FM frequency in the voice.”

CVSA, like polygraphy, has not been proven by peer-reviewed research to work better than chance under field conditions. While confessions elicited from naive and gullible suspects may be useful, it is irresponsible for law enforcement officers to place any reliance on the results of these pseudoscientific “tests.”

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