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††Policing ourselves

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Author Topic:†† Policing ourselves
posted 09-28-2005 11:02 AM ††† Click Here to See the Profile for Capstun ††Click Here to Email Capstun†† ††Edit/Delete Message
The recent post in the public forum from Absolutely Crushed touched a sore spot with me. When are we going to do a better job of policing our own profession? Arguably the biggest and longest running complaint about polygraph is a lack of standardization. Everyone complains about DODPI, but it seems they are the only ones really trying to standardize polygraph, at least for federal examiners. Can you imagine what it would be like if we all used the same type test formats, same scoring and had to abide by the same, high ethical standards? Ok enough ranting. Itís a pipe dream I know!

Ok, so what do we do with really crappy examiners? I live in a state that doesn't have a licensing law. A couple of the examiners I have to deal with are not members of the APA or any other organization. I am still sent exams administered by them to review in criminal cases (the defense hires them). They're crap. Garbage. Not worth the paper they are printed on. But, its not only the non-APA members who are this way. There are at least two members, supposedly reputable examiners, that I also get crap tests from. One examiner's exams are extremely bad. The examiner is reputable (supposedly), but so arrogant that even questioning why certain questions were asked or a particular format was used, will unleash a tirade of profanity. I came up with my own, local solution for this examiner. I have convinced my department and the prosecutorís office to discount any exam performed by this examiner on its face. It will not be accepted by the state for consideration. So, defense attorneys here don't bother with this examiner anymore.

How I did this was to send some of the charts to DODPI for a review as well as to a couple of other nationally recognized experts. The responses I got back were everything from, "Totally unacceptable" to "the worst test I have ever seen" and my favorite, "this test was complete S*$#!".

That took care of my problem, but these examiners are still performing exams for people like Absolutely Crushed. Giving more ammo to the Anti's and making us all look bad.

Ok, my mood ring has gone back blue now, so I can go back to work. Enough venting.

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posted 09-28-2005 01:13 PM ††† Click Here to See the Profile for Taylor ††Click Here to Email Taylor†† ††Edit/Delete Message
Without going into to much detail, I know someone that reported a crappy examiner to APA. In turn APA interrogated the one reporting on why they were reporting this person (the crappy examiner). The good examiner became so frustrated with APA that he/she decided not to pursue it anymore. APA didn't need to interrogate the reporting examiner. All they would have to do is request charts/reports/tapes from the crappy examiner and come to their own conclusion.

I agree, it is very frustrating to have bad examiners in our profession. Taylor

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Ted Todd
posted 09-28-2005 01:23 PM ††† Click Here to See the Profile for Ted Todd † ††Edit/Delete Message
I teach at three different police Academies and began hearing stories from applicants about a polygraph examiner. They told me the tests are administered in the man's home, at his kitchen table, with the T.V. on, and other family members present. Several even told me the family dog was in their lap during the examination.

It turns out this once respected law enforcement examiner had retired and was now "doing his own thing" out of his home. He was not a member of any association where I could have reported him to. The sad thing is, that these applicants want the job so bad, none of them would complain to the agency...especially if they passed- which most of them did.

I made it a point to pass the complaints on to the agencies and many of them have stopped using him.

I don't like to "rat out" a fellow examiner but yes, we DO have to police our own.


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posted 09-28-2005 01:31 PM ††† Click Here to See the Profile for Capstun ††Click Here to Email Capstun†† ††Edit/Delete Message
Well, that sucks, but not surprising. The APA tends to be the good ol' boy network.

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J L Ogilvie
posted 09-28-2005 05:35 PM ††† Click Here to See the Profile for J L Ogilvie ††Click Here to Email J L Ogilvie†† ††Edit/Delete Message
Of course this is an old problem but still frustrating. Any examiner known to be performing poor tests should be reported.

However, I think we know how that goes.

I think the best way to fight this is to educate the public. This won't be much easier than fighting bad examiners but we can try.

The public has to understand that when an exam is needed they need to find a good examiner. We then have to teach them how to do that. This forum is one place to do that.

We can also do public speaking to different groups to help with awareness. I lecture quite a bit at different schools and always have a section on how to find an examiner if one is ever needed.

I even carry a little flyer I found somewhere about picking a proper examiner.

I think that the only other way is to have a certification process. Something along the lines of the standard that ASTM is writing relating to the Marin (paired testing) protcol where by examiners have to prove their competency. If they can't they shouldn't belong to any professional association or have a license in any state.



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