Polygraph Critic Doug Williams Completes Supervised Release

Doug Williams

On 25 September 2015, federal judge Vicki Miles-LaGrange sentenced Doug Williams, who pled guilty after he was entrapped in a federal sting operation called “Operation Lie Busters,” to two years of imprisonment to be followed by three years of supervised release “[u]pon release from imprisonment.”

Williams had taught two undercover federal agents how to pass or beat a polygraph “test.”

Williams was released from prison on 26 July 2017, and thus his three years of supervised release expired on Sunday, 26 July 2020. Williams’ terms of supervised release had prohibited him from participating “in any form of polygraph-related activity during the period of supervision.”

Williams plans to resume offering training on how to pass or beat the polygraph, and his website, Polygraph.com, now includes the following notice:

Now accepting clients. There will soon be a sign up form to set a time and date for the training.

Charlatan v. Charlatan: NITV Sues E. Gary Baker

On Wednesday, 17 June 2020, “Dr.” Charles Humble’s NITV Federal Services, LLC, which markets the scientifically baseless Computer Voice Stress Analyzer (CVSA) to governmental agencies, filed in a Florida court an amended complaint in litigation against competitor Elwood Gary Baker, who runs Baker Group International, and his associate Michael Savage, who runs Expertos VSA, Inc. The original complaint was filed on 25 May 2015.

Charles Wayne Humble in “Heartbeat of America” promotional video

It should be noted that no voice stress analysis technique has any scientific basis, be it NITV’s CVSA, Baker Group International’s Digital Voice Stress Analyzer (DVSA), Dektor’s Psychological Stress Evaluator (PSE), or Nemesysco’s Layered Voice Analysis (LVA).

In the lawsuit, brought before the Circuit Court of the 15th Judicial Circuit in Palm Beach, NITV alleges that Baker and Savage have been marketing their competing voice-based lie detector in violation of U.S. export regulations and seeks as much as $1,000,000 (or potentially more) in damages.

NITV’s amended complaint includes the following two counts:

Economic Damages Against Defendants due to Violation of Florida Unfair and Deceptive Trade Practices Act

  1. Plaintiff hereby restates the allegation set forth in paragraphs 1 through 46 as if fully set forth herein and further alleges as follows:
  2. Both BAKER and SAVAGE, individually and by and through EXPERTOS INC and EXPERTOS SA, have exported from the United States or re-exported VSA technologies either to or between various foreign locations including Mexico, Central America, South America and South Africa.
  3. Upon information and belief, none of the Defendants named herein have received such US Government approved Export Licenses for the multiple sales they have made from the US to foreign countries and/or between foreign countries, and are knowingly and actively engaged in the commerce of selling US Government Export Controlled commodities to various foreign governments, foreign commercial entities, and foreign national end users who have not been properly scrutinized to be granted an Export License.
  4. The Defendants are in violation of Federal export laws, under the EAR, as well as violations of the Federal Trade Commission Act 15 U.S.C. §§ 41 et seq.
  5. The failure to comply with Federal Export Law and violation of the EAR, constitute an unfair and deceptive act and unfair practice under the Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Act.
  6. Defendants’ [sic] BAKER and SAVAGE, individually and by and through EXPERTOS INC and EXPERTOS SA, deliberate and knowing efforts to export, distribute and sell the DVSA/FVAS outside of the United States without a United States Government approved Export License, constitutes a violation of 15 CFR § 730-774 under the EAR, and constitutes a criminal conspiracy to violate federally promulgated export laws, regulations and directives.
    Due to Defendants’ unfair and deceptive actions in circumventing export licensing requirements, Defendants have been able to expeditiously enter foreign markets to the competitive disadvantage and economic damage of NFS.
  7. Due to Defendants’ unfair and deceptive actions in circumventing export licensing requirements, NFS has lost numerous sales to BAKER and/or SAVAGE by and through EXPERTOS INC/EXPERTOS SA.
  8. NFS’s damages are directly proximate to Defendants’ violation of the Federal Trade Commission Act 15 U.S.C. Section 41 et seq., and the Florida Unfair and Deceptive Trade Practices Act, Florida Statute 501.201 et seq., and specifically 501.211 of the Florida Statutes.
  9. NFS is entitled to an award of attorney fees and costs associated with the bringing of this action pursuant to the Federal Trade Commission Act 15 U.S.C. Section 41 et seq., and Section 501.2105 of the Florida Statutes.

WHEREFORE, NFS respectfully requests that this Honorable Court:
A. Enter a money judgment of $1,000,000 against Defendants or an amount equal to the actual damages suffered by Plaintiff by reason of the violations alleged above, pursuant to the Federal Trade Commission Act 15 U.S.C. Section 41 et seq., and Section 501.211 of the Florida Statutes;
B. Enter an order requiring Defendants to pay Plaintiff’s costs and reasonable attorney’s fees pursuant to the Federal Trade Commission Act 15 U.S.C. Section 41 et seq., and Section 501.2105 of the Florida Statutes; and
C. Direct any and all further relief this court deems just and equitable.

Injunctive and Equitable Relief Against All Defendants

  1. Plaintiff restates the allegations in paragraphs 1 through 46 and further states:
  2. As alleged herein, Defendants have engaged in a continuous course of violation of 15 CFR § 730-774 under the EAR and Federal Trade Commission Regulations.
  3. Defendants will continue to violate 15 CFR § 730-774 under the EAR and Federal Trade Commission Regulations causing irreparable harm to Plaintiff, the public, United States national security, and efforts by various foreign governments to combat criminal enterprises by supplying unscreened end users with technology that can be used to thwart law enforcement, military and/or national security efforts unless enjoined.
  4. Plaintiff does not possess an adequate remedy at law to prevent Defendants’ conduct as alleged herein from continuing.
  5. Plaintiff has a clear right to its request for injunctive relief and the public interest will be served as Plaintiff seeks to prevent continuing violations [sic] 15 CFR § 730-774 under the EAR and of the Federal Trade Commission Export Regulations which directly damage Plaintiff, the public and others.
    WHEREFORE, Plaintiff respectfully requests that this Honorable Court:
    A. Grant a temporary and permanent injunction against Defendants BAKER, EXPERTOS INC, EXPERTOS SA, and SAVAGE, enjoining the Defendants from exporting, demonstrating or selling its DVSA/FVAS product to foreign customers or potential customers both inside and outside the United States without a United States Government approved export license;
    B. Enter an Order awarding Plaintiff costs and reasonable attorney’s fees pursuant to the Federal Trade Commission Act 15 U.S.C. Section 41 et seq., and Section 501.2105 of the Florida Statutes;
    C. Order Dissolution of EXPERTOS VSA, INC.;
    D. Order Disgorgement of any and all monies received by Defendants’ [sic] in connection [sic] their violations of Federal Trade Commission Act 15 U.S.C. Section 41 et seq., and Section 501.201 of the Florida Statutes; and
    F. Direct any and all further relief this Court deems just and equitable.

The claim is Case No. 50-2015-CA-005885-XXXX-MB in the Circuit Court of the 15th Judicial Circuit, in and for Palm Beach County, Florida. Other notable filings in the case include the transcripts of video depositions of Elwood Gary Baker and Michael Savage.

It should be noted that in 2009, the same court awarded Elwood Gary Baker $575,000 in a defamation suit he brought against NITV, LLC. NITV to date has shirked payment of this judgment, and Baker’s efforts to collect continue. That action is Case No. 50-2005-CA-001771-XXXX-MB.

In addition, NITV is the defendant in a federal fraud suit, Fletcher v. NITV LLC, filed on 18 May 2020.

Update 24 June 2020: In 2006, NITV was ordered to pay $77,000 in penalties for export violations similar to those that NITV now alleges E. Gary Baker et al. to have committed. Documentation of this action is available on Archive.org’s mirror of NITVCVSAExposed.com, a website that in May 2019 was ordered taken down pursuant to a federal lawsuit brought by NITV against Arthur Herring III and Dektor Corporation.

TV Polygraph Operator Daniel Ribacoff Denies Falsely Branding Steve Wilkos Show Guest as a Liar, But Deletes Posts When Challenged

Daniel D. Ribacoff

Polygraph operator Daniel Ribacoff, who performs for the NBCUniversal Television Distribution syndicated daytime television talk program, The Steve Wilkos Show, has publicly denied having wrongly accused show guest Anca Pennington of lying. In an unaired segment recorded on 10 December 2019, Ribacoff accused Pennington of lying when she denied having burned her infant daughter with cigarettes. (Pennington, who resides in Omaha, Nebraska, did not bring her daughter with her to the show’s studio in Stamford, Connecticut.) Distraught, Pennington attempted suicide later that day.

Anca Pennington

Medical staff who treated Pennington after her attempted suicide, upon being shown a photograph of the lesions on her daughter’s leg, identified them as ringworm, a common and easily treated fungal infection. When lesions reappeared later in December, a medical examination confirmed a ringworm infection, and an antifungal preparation was prescribed.

Photograph of Anca Pennington’s infant daughter’s lesions provided to The Steve Wilkos Show

Ribacoff’s denial that he had wrongly accused Pennington came in the form of a Facebook reply to Steve Sledge, who in late May or early June asked on Ribacoff’s public Facebook page, “What happened with the case where the woman [sic] child had ringworm instead of a cigarette burn. That polygraph was wrong?”

Ribacoff replied, “the polygraph was correct. Ringworm was a secondary infection form [sic] the cigarette burns and was diagnosed weeks after the show.” In a second reply to Sledge, Ribacoff wrote, “doctors determined they were cigarette burns at the onset of the investigation.”

On Friday, 12 June 2020, Pennington, who posts on Facebook under the pseudonym Lore Radu, replied to Ribacoff, “stop lying you sick man! I took my child to the doctor my baby NEVER had cigarette burn you sick lying evil man!”

That same day, Ribacoff deleted Steve Sledge’s question and all replies to it from his Facebook page and blocked Pennington from viewing the page. Pennington provided AntiPolygraph.org with the following screenshots of the deleted posts:

AntiPolygraph.org has written to Daniel Ribacoff asking how he knows for sure that Pennington’s child had cigarette burns, how he knows for sure that ringworm was a secondary infection to that, and why he deleted these posts. At the time of posting, Ribacoff has not replied these questions. This post will be updated as warranted.

Update (15 June 2020): Anca Pennington posted a commentary to YouTube on Friday, 12 June 2020:

Book Review: False Confessions: The True Story of Doug Williams and His Crusade Against the Polygraph Industry

In 2012, former Oklahoma City Police Department polygraph operator-turned-critic Douglas Gene Williams published his autobiography under the title, From Cop to Crusader: My Fight Against the Dangerous Myth of “Lie Detection.” In 2014, he released a second edition, adding an account of the raid conducted by federal agents on his home and office as part of Operation Lie Busters, a federal investigation that targeted individuals providing instruction on how to pass or beat a polygraph “test.”

In 2015, Williams was sentenced to two years in prison for teaching undercover agents how to pass the polygraph. While incarcerated, he met Jack Straw, a fellow inmate and former Chicago police captain, with whom he has collaborated to retell his life story, now published under the title False Confessions: The True Story of Doug Williams and His Crusade Against the Polygraph (Unit 2 Creations: 2020).

Asked for comment about the choice of title (the book does not specifically go into any particular false confessions), Williams explained that he and Straw, in discussing problems with the polygraph in the criminal arena, both agreed that “it is the primary thing most responsible for all false confessions.”

In the introduction to From Cop to Crusader, Williams stated “This book is a recounting of actual events that have occurred during my crusade against the multi-billion dollar scam called ‘lie detection’ perpetrated by the polygraph industry. It is written to the best of my memory. But as someone once said, ‘Memory is a complicated thing, a relative to the truth, but not its twin.’ So, the characters, conversations, and entities depicted may be composites or fictitious.” This no doubt applies to False Confessions, as well, which reads very much like an oral history, with reconstructed conversations.

Straw’s retelling of Doug Williams’ story is without question better organized and told than the original. Divided into 34 chapters, it chronicles Williams’ time working as a U.S. Air Force enlisted man in the White House Communications Agency during the Johnson and Nixon administrations, his joining the Oklahoma City Police Department, and how he made the decision to apply for a polygraph position, which culminated in his attending the late Dick Arther’s National Training Center of Lie Detection in New York City.

Williams relates (in Chapter 4) one of the memorable incidents that led him to question what he was doing as a polygraph operator:

…A particularly haunting memory of a woman seated in my office, sobbing while I railed on her for a confession, returned to my mind almost daily. I had been pushing her for a confession.

“The polygraph says you’re lying!” I shouted…

“I didn’t do it,” she’d cried…

I screamed back, “The machine is not wrong. You are lying. The machine is never wrong!”

After hours of mental pummeling, she’d balled up into a near-fetal position, almost convulsing in anguish. Suddenly, this woman turned her face to look squarely at me and cried out, “I did not do it! What are you trying to do? My God, what is wrong with you?”

There it was. Very plain, and corrosive as acid. What WAS wrong with me? And, that question led to more questions, bigger questions. What was wrong with all of this lie-detection trickery and the massive cult of operators who held so much power? Where had it started? How had it grown? How had it lasted all this time? I knew I needed answers to these questions.

Williams goes on to describe his 1979 departure from the Oklahoma City Police Department, his objections to polygraphy, and his decision to go public with his concerns. In Chapter 7, Williams recalls a press event he held at an Oklahoma City hotel not long after his resignation. Among other notable things, Williams recalls:

I felt that it was important to give the crowd some foundation to my claims, so I explained my background and told them how I had come to learn about this abusive behavior. I explained that, aside from my job with the police department, I had also worked part-time for a private polygraph company, so I had firsthand knowledge of the abuses within the industry. I explained that the company I had worked for had actually encouraged us to fail as many people as possible in order to charge the employer more money for administering more polygraph exams. It was common practice among private polygraph examiners.

Williams also notes that not all companies that required polygraph screening at that time did so voluntarily:

…polygraph operators were a necessary evil for the owners and managers of businesses that required their employees to submit to this grueling ordeal. Many of the business owners resented having to give the test; however, they were required to do so by the insurance companies that covered their businesses against losses from theft by employees….

Williams goes on to recount the beginning of his crusade against polygraphy, starting with an appearance on a popular talk show on Oklahoma’s largest radio station, KTOK. He details his development of a “three-prong strategy” embracing education, legislation, and litigation. As part of the education prong, Williams wrote the original edition of his manual, “How to Sting the Polygraph,” which explains how to pass or beat a polygraph “test”:

To launch the Education Phase of my attack, I needed a textbook. So, I compiled information into a manual I called, How to Sting the Polygraph. It was a detailed, start-to-finish handbook on how to defend yourself from the polygraph and its operator. The techniques were simple, and a person could perform them with relative ease. But, I had one more thing to do in order to craft the manual into the ultimate textbook I wanted it to be. In order to round out my research so that the manual was completely authenticated, I decided to utilize all the techniques “undercover,” as you might say. I would take polygraph exams from different polygraphists, pass them, document them, and notify the operators that had given me the test of the said results.

In order to do this, I would have to relocate. Oklahoma City wouldn’t work. All the polygraph operators knew me, and they weren’t going to let me anywhere near their little rooms of deceit. So, after I left the P.D., I moved to Houston, Texas to launch my campaign….

Notably, the complete text of the latest edition of Williams’ “How to Sting the Polygraph” is included as an appendix to False Confessions.

While working in Houston as an apprentice machinist, Williams embarked on a letter-writing campaign, also giving radio interviews. He later returned to Oklahoma City where for a time he worked as a paralegal and attended (though did not ultimately complete) law school at Oklahoma City University.

As part of the litigation prong of his antipolygraph campaign, Williams convinced his employer, attorney and former Oklahoma City Police Officer Chris Eulberg, to represent a polygraph victim bringing a wrongful discharge suit against oil field services company Halliburton Services. While the case was ultimately not successful, depositions were held, and the case helped to bring attention to workplace polygraph abuse. Although Williams does not mention the name of the plaintiff, upon inquiry, he confirmed that it was Michael Crowley, whose plight was the subject of an 11 July 1983 article in The Oklahoman titled, “Test wipes out job.”

Another highlight is Williams’ account of his participation in the CBS 60 Minutes investigative report, “Truth and Consequences,” which aired on Sunday, 11 May 1986 (Chapters 21 and 22). In that report, three different polygraph operators chosen from the New York telephone directory accused three different individuals of theft, even though no theft had occurred.

Regarding the “legislative prong” of his campaign against the polygraph, Williams recounts (in Chapters 16 and 17) the story his 1985 testimony before the U.S. House of Representatives, which helped lay the foundation for passage of the Employee Polygraph Protection Act of 1988.

The last four chapters are of special interest. They concern a federal investigation called Operation Lie Busters that targeted Williams for entrapment. Williams recounts the raid on his home and office conducted on 21 February 2013, his indictment more than a year later, his difficult decision to plead guilty two days into trial, his incarceration from 30 October 2015 until 26 July 2017, and his plans for the future.

A minor criticism is that book could have benefited from additional copy editing (for example, in decades, such as “the 1980s” there should be no apostrophe, and “more wizened” does not mean “made more wise.”) In addition, it is erroneously implied in Chapter 5 that William Moulton Marston introduced his blood pressure-based lie detector test in 1930, nearly a decade after John A. Larson had assembled the first polygraph instrument in 1921. Marston in fact had documented his idea for a lie detector as early as 1915, and Larson was inspired by Marston’s work. But again, these are minor points.

False Confessions is a must-read for students of the history of polygraphy. Doug Williams is indisputably among the most influential persons in polygraphy’s nearly century-long history. His revelation of the polygraph trade’s secrets has earned the wrath of polygraph operators across the United States, and his manual “How to Sting the Polygraph” has long been part of the curriculum for the federal polygraph school’s countermeasures course.

In addition, the targeting of Williams for entrapment by overzealous federal agents—who began their investigation in the absence of any evidence that he had committed any crime—has civil liberties implications that go well beyond the polygraph world.

On a final note, polygraph operators (and those contemplating attending polygraph school) are well-advised to reflect on Williams’ saga and to think long and hard about the ethical implications of practicing this fraudulent pseudoscience.

False Confessions is available directly from the publisher. At the time of writing, discounted copies are also available via Outskirts Press, as is an Amazon Kindle version (presently free with Kindle Unlimited).

Update 19 June 2020: AntiPolygraph.org readers may obtain copies of False Confessions signed by Jack Straw and Doug Williams at a $3 discount by using code E29J9EE when ordering directly from Unit 2 Creations.

LAPD Polygraph Policy Documents Disclosed

AntiPolygraph.org has obtained and published two previously unavailable Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) polygraph unit policy documents.

The LAPD Polygraph Unit Examiner Reference Guide dated November 2018 and marked “Law Enforcement Sensitive” includes rules for scoring polygraph charts as well as question sequences for the various polygraph techniques used by the LAPD polygraph unit, including the Law Enforcement Pre-Employment Test format used for screening applicants.

The LAPD Technical Investigation Unit Polygraph Unit Guidelines dated May 2019 detail the organization of the LAPD polygraph unit, the duties and responsibilities of its personnel, and its internal policies and procedures.

Wisconsin Court of Appeals Throws Out Post-Polygraph Confession on Grounds of Coercion

In a 19 May 2020 ruling, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals upheld the suppression of a post-polygraph confession in the child molestation case of Wisconsin v. Adam W. Vice (2018AP2220-CR).

In 2016, Vice was accused of sexually molesting a four-year-old girl. Questioned by Washburn County Sheriff’s Department investigator William Fisher, Vice “denied any wrongdoing and asked Fisher if there was anything he could do to clear his name.”

Polygraph Operator Ryan Lambeseder
(2016 Eau Claire Leader-Telegram photo)

Fisher arranged for Vice to submit to a polygraph “test” conducted by Ryan Lambeseder of the Eau Claire Police Department. Vice “failed” the polygraph and ultimately confessed during a post-polygraph interrogation jointly conducted by Lambeseder and Fisher.

The Wisconsin Court of Appeals concluded (at para. 72 of its decision) that:

…the totality of the circumstances here evidences that the officers improperly used coercive methods and strategies to overcome Vice’s ability to resist including: (1) making numerous, repeated references to the polygraph results throughout the entire course of the post-polygraph interview; (2) repeatedly asserting that those results showed Vice—who claimed not to remember the assault—did remember it; (3) failing to correct Vice’s statement that he must have assaulted the victim because the test said he did; and (4) failing to inform Vice that the test results would be inadmissible in any criminal proceedings against him.

The court goes on to state (at para. 81): “…we caution law enforcement officers that if they plan to rely on polygraph results in order to elicit a defendant’s confession, they need to inform the defendant that those results are inadmissible in court.”

Gretchen Schuldt of the Wisconsin Justice Initiative reports on the ruling in a 26 May 2020 UrbanMilwaukee.com article titled, “Appeals Court Nixes Post-Polygraph Confession.”

See also the Wisconsin State Public Defender On Point blog post, “Defense win! COA affirms suppression of confession given after polygraph exam,” which includes a link to other filings in this case and a comment by Vice’s attorney, Frederick A. Bechtold.

And for an example of a federal case where a post-polygraph confession was suppressed, see our 2016 article, Federal Judge Throws Out FBI Post-Polygraph Confession Over Concerns About Voluntariness.

CVSA Marketer NITV Sued for Fraud

NITV Federal Services logo (misappropriating the Great Seal of the United States)

Bianca Fletcher, a former Arkansas Department of Corrections employee who alleges that she “was fired, purportedly for being deceptive” on a Computer Voice Stress Analysis (CVSA) “test,” has filed a federal lawsuit against NITV, LLC, NITV Federal Services, LLC, their founder, Charles Humble, NITV employee Gene Shook, and two “John Does.”

Fletcher claims damages for “libel, slander, false light, illegal exaction, negligence, and products liability, in an amount exceeding that required for diversity jurisdiction.”

Fletcher’s 6-page Complaint, filed on 18 May 2020, alleges the following general facts:

  1. Plaintiff worked for the Arkansas Department of Corrections (ADC), starting in 2016.
  2. Plaintiff was terminated on May 16, 2019, at which time she was a Correctional Officer II.
  3. Plaintiff had come to work, and an Adani body scanning device, known to be faulty, purported to detect contraband on Plaintiff’s person.
  4. Plaintiff did not have contraband on her person.
  5. From the point of the purported detection of contraband, Plaintiff was at all times accompanied or watched by ADC personnel until such time as she was strip searched.
  6. For most of the time, up until she was strip searched, Plaintiff was videoed.
  7. No person ever saw Plaintiff, Fletcher, get rid of or hand off any contraband.
  8. No recording device ever showed her get rid of or hand off any contraband.
  9. When Plaintiff was strip searched, no contraband was found.
  10. This was because Plaintiff had no contraband.
  11. Plaintiff was given a voice stress analyzer test, which she passed.
  12. Plaintiff was given a second voice stress analyzer (VSA) test, in which it was claimed Plaintiff was deceptive and lying when asked about the purported contraband.
  13. The voice stress analyzer test result, purporting to show that Plaintiff was deceptive, was false. Plaintiff was not lying or being deceptive. She answered all questions honestly.
  14. Plaintiff was fired, purportedly for being deceptive, based on the second VSA result.
  15. The NITV sold the VSA that gave the test to Plaintiff to the ADC.
  16. The NITV sells VSA devices to government agencies and private companies all over the United States.
  17. The NITV claims that the VSA devices it sells can detect falsehoods and lies in advertisements and marketing materials. These devices are marketed to law enforcement agencies, such as the ADC, and private corporations, under the premise that these agencies and businesses can use these devices to determine when employees are lying for purposes of carrying out discipline.
  18. This is false, and it is known to be false by the NITV. Studies have shown that VSA devices are about as likely to catch deception and lies as tossing a coin. An observant witch doctor would almost certainly do better. NITV has never subjected its devices to peer review. NITV has never conducted double blind tests to establish the effectiveness of its devices. NITV did not develop these devices using the scientific method.
  19. NITV trains people working for agencies and companies to operate these devices. It tells them how to determine falsehoods and deceptive statements, but of course, this is bogus.
  20. NITV’s trainers frequently consult on cold calls from the agencies they sell these materials to.
  21. Shook consulted with an ADC employee who gave Plaintiff, Fletcher, the VSA test and claimed that Plaintiff was deceptive on that test.
  22. As a result of NITV’s and Shook’s conduct Plaintiff’s reputation was harmed, and she was fired.

The complaint goes on to enumerate five counts against the defendants and demands a jury trial. The third count includes the allegation that “NITV has committed a fraud on the state of Arkansas, selling it devices that do not work, which it knows do not work, and also selling bogus training on these devices” (emphasis added). Fletcher seeks compensatory damages in excess of $1,000,000 and punitive damages in excess of $1,000,000.

In a 12-page Answer to Plaintiff’s Complaint, also filed on 18 May 2020, defendants NITV Federal Services, LLC, Charles Humble, and Gene Shook deny any liability and request that the complaint be dismissed.

On 19 May 2020, Judge Lee P. Rudofsky’s courtroom deputy filed a Proposed Final Scheduling Order including a trial date during the week of 2 August 2021.

The civil suit is case number 4:20-CV-00521-LPR in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas.

NCCA Interview & Interrogation Manual

The 1991 Department of Defense Polygraph Institute (DoDPI) interrogation manual, Interview & Interrogation (PDF) is among the first documents published by AntiPolygraph.org nearly 20 years ago.

Since then, DoDPI has undergone two name changes and is now called the “National Center for Credibility Assessment” (NCCA). AntiPolygraph.org has obtained and now made available the November 2013 NCCA version of Interview & Interrogation (PDF). This document is also available in Microsoft Word format.

In addition, we have obtained and published a 9-page Counterintelligence Post-Test Interview Supplement dated November 2013. This document, too, is also available in Microsoft Word format. This document provides minimization/rationalization strategies or “themes” for eliciting admissions in post-polygraph counterintelligence interrogations.

Both of these documents are marked “For Official Use Only” and include the admonition, “No part of this handbook may be reproduced or distributed in any form or stored in a database or retrieval system without the written permission of the Director of NCCA.”

These documents make it clear that polygraph “tests” are actually interrogations in disguise and will be of interest to all who may face polygraph “testing.”

Neither Tara Reade Nor Joe Biden Should Take a Polygraph “Test”

Former Joe Biden staffer Tara Reade

In an interview with Tara Reade, who has accused Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden of sexually assaulting her in 1993, Megyn Kelly asked Reade (at 37:37) if she would be willing to take a polygraph “test”:

Kelly: If I can just go back for one second to Blasey Ford.
Reade: Yes.
Kelly: Because we mentioned her—
Reade: Yes.
Kelly: —and we were talking about Believe All Women. Some of those who supported her, but have now found a reason not to support you say well, she was under oath. Would you go under oath?
Reade: Absolutely.
Kelly: They say, “well she subjected herself to cross examination.” Would you do that?
Reade: Absolutely.
Kelly: They also point out that she took a polygraph, controlled by someone on her team. Is that something you wanna do?
Reade: I’m not a criminal. Joe Biden should take the polygraph. What I would say is that they’re not admissible into court, one. Two, Blasey Ford sup— took one? Is that true, I believe? That’s what I understand. But what kind of precedent does that set for survivors of violence? Does that mean we’re presumed guilty, and we all have to take polygraphs? So I’m just putting it out there. So I will take one, if Joe Biden takes one. But I’m not a criminal.

Megyn Kelly, a graduate of Albany Law School, should know that polygraph “testing” has no scientific basis and that polygraph chart readings are without evidentiary value, yet she used the question about the polygraph to tease the interview.

Tara Reade, a graduate of the Seattle University School of Law should also (and evidently does, at least to some extent) understand that polygraphs are bogus. Joe Biden, a graduate of the Syracuse University College of Law, should also understand this.

Rather than suggesting that Joe Biden should take a polygraph, it would have been better if Reade had simply stated “No. No one should have their candor assessed by pseudoscientific means.”

Kelly made reference to Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s polygraph concerning her sexual assault allegation against then Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. As a psychologist, Blasey Ford should have well understood that polygraphy is pseudoscience. Her pro bono lawyers, who urged her to sit for the polygraph and arranged it, should also have understood this.

It can be reasonably inferred that Blasey Ford’s polygraph was conducted as a public relations move: because the U.S. public has for many decades been conditioned by popular media and government agencies to believe that the polygraph is capable of detecting lies, a passed polygraph “test” can help to bolster one’s credibility with those who don’t understand that it’s junk science.

In the end, however, Blasey Ford’s polygraph did not significantly help her credibility and instead likely hurt it. Her lawyers refused to release her polygraph charts or a recording of her polygraph session so that it could be independently reviewed, raising questions. Moreover, it led to her being questioned under oath about whether she had ever given anyone tips or advice on taking a polygraph. She denied having done so, but her denial was contradicted by an ex-boyfriend who stated that he saw her coach a friend about what to expect during an FBI pre-employment polygraph.

Joe Biden’s legal team could, like Blasey Ford’s, arrange for him to take a polygraph “test,” perhaps even employing the same polygraph operator (retired FBI special agent Jeremiah Hanafin). As with Blasey Ford, the outcome would only be made public if he passed.

But who would find that convincing? Questions would immediately (and appropriately) be raised about polygraphy’s lack of scientific underpinnings, about the fact that polygraphy is vulnerable to simple, effective countermeasures, and about the polygraph operator having been hand-picked by Joe Biden’s team. The same kinds of questions would also arise were Tara Reade to take a polygraph.

In the nearly two decades that AntiPolygraph.org has been online, we have not come across a single instance where an important public question was solved by dueling polygraphs.

Both Joe Biden and Tara Reade are well-advised to unapologetically reject any demand for a polygraph.

“Green River Killer” Gary Leon Ridgway’s Polygraph Charts

On Monday, 7 May 1984, polygraph operator Norman R. “Norm” Matzke of the King County, Washington Sheriff’s Office conducted a polygraph “test” of Gary Leon Ridgway regarding the deaths of prostitutes whose bodies had been dumped in or near the Green River beginning in 1982.

Gary Leon Ridgway in 1982

After passing the polygraph, Ridgway, who had been arrested on a prostitution-related charge in 1982, was discounted as a suspect. At the time of Ridway’s polygraph, investigators were primarily focused on an innocent suspect, Melvyn Wayne Foster, who had failed a polygraph “test” administered by Matzke on 20 September 1982.

In 2003, Ridgway, who had been identified as the perpetrator through DNA evidence, was convicted for the murders of 48 women, 42 of whom had disappeared prior to Ridgway’s 1984 polygraph session.

AntiPolygraph.org has obtained copies of Ridgway’s polygraph charts and is making them publicly available for the first time. The first chart is for what polygraph operators call a stimulation or “stim” test. Typically, the examinee is asked to write a number and to deny having selected it as the operator reads off a series of numbers including the number chosen. The operator then tells the subject that he reacted strongly when he denied having written the chosen number. This ploy is intended to convince the subject that the polygraph can read his mind.

Gary Leon Ridgway’s Stim Test

AntiPolygraph.org has not received information regarding the number that Ridgway chose for the stim test.

Next, Ridgway was twice asked a series of nine questions, which are listed below, followed by his answers:

  1. Gary, you have heard all the questions on this test, are there any you are going to lie to? NO
  2. Regarding the deaths of prostitutes, have you told the police the complete truth about that? YES
  3. Is your true last name Ridgway? YES
  4. Have you ever caused the death of a prostitute? NO
  5. Before you were 30 years old, did you ever physically injure anyone without provocation? NO
  6. Were you born in the state of Utah? YES
  7. Do you know of anyone who has killed a prostitute? NO
  8. Before you were 30 years old, did you ever lie about someone to get them into serious trouble? NO
  9. Have you taken any illegal drug or narcotic in the last 48 hours? NO

Questions 1 and 2 appear to be so-called “sacrifice relevant” questions. That is, although they are relevant, they are not scored.

Questions 3 and 6 are irrelevant questions that also are not scored. They serve as “buffers” between sets of relevant and so-called “control” or comparison questions.

Questions 4 and 7 are the relevant questions: they directly concern the matter under investigation.

Questions 5 and 8 are probable-lie “control” questions, to which the subject is secretly expected to lie. Ridgway passed the polygraph because his reactions to these “control” questions were deemed stronger than his reactions to the relevant questions (4 and 7). For more about how polygraph charts are scored, see Chapter 3 of our free book, The Lie Behind the Lie Detector.

It is not clear what purpose question 9, which was not scored, was intended to serve.

The above question list is included in a training document (PDF) prepared by polygraph operator Bob Littlejohn. The document also includes the following notes:

At the time of the polygraph, the subject was a single, 35 year old male. He denied any recent medication or surgery. He denied any nervous disorder or having ever been confined to an Institution. Ridgway denied any “experimentation” with marijuana; speed; LSD; narcotic; or, hallucinogen. He also denied any recent alcohol use.

Ridgway stated his health was, “good”, and denied any history of ulcers; heart condition; emphysema; asthma; tuberculosis; hay fever; breathing problems; diabetes; epilepsy; and, blackouts.

The charts below are from the first and second askings of the above list of questions:

Gary Leon Ridgway’s 1st Polygraph Chart
Gary Leon Ridgway’s 2nd Polygraph Chart

The case of Green River Killer Gary Leon Ridgway is a tragic example of how misplaced faith in the pseudoscience of polygraphy can lead to investigative misdirection, with deadly consequences. A similar case is that of suspected serial killer John Arthur Ackroyd, who in 1977 escaped accountability when a woman he raped failed a police-administered polygraph “test,” while Ackroyd passed one.

For previous discussion of the Ridgway case, see the message board thread, Gary Leon Ridgway, Deadliest Serial Killer in U.S. History, Passed Polygraph and Killed Again.

AntiPolygraph.org sent an e-mail inquiry to polygraph operator Norman R. Matzke seeking comment, but did not receive a reply prior to publication of this article.