The Grand Rapids Press and the Detroit Free Press report that Lisa Hansen of Grand Rapids, Michigan, failed a polygraph “test” administered by a Michigan State Police sergeant on 22 December 2005. Hansen, a receptionist at a local Panopoulos Salon, stood accused of stealing some $425 in cash and checks, which she maintained she had placed in a deposit slot at her employer’s bank. The Free Press reports that Hansen’s lawyer, Gerald R. Stahl, “questioned the lie-detector test, saying the polygraph operator badgered her before accusing her of lying.” Hansen told 24 Hour News 8 of Grand Rapids, “I was amazed that I didn’t pass. Completely amazed.”
Following the false positive, Hansen was criminally charged and persuaded by her earlier, court-appointed attorney to plead guilty to a misdemeanor embezzlement charge. A judge rejected the plea and instead ordered her to perform 40 hours of community service.
But now, Hansen has been completely exonerated, and the Michigan State Police’s polygraph operator proven to have been completely wrong: on 9 August 2006, a bank employee found the missing money “stuck in a chute” at the night depository where Hansen maintained all along that she had placed the money.