General Question

aviona's avatar

Would a lie detector test provide accurate results if the person was "under the influence"?

Asked by aviona (3250points) March 22nd, 2009

Say the person is not completely inebriated, but competent enough to answer the questions.

(and how accurate are they anyway?)

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7 Answers

asmonet's avatar

Lie detectors are not accurate normally.

alive's avatar

that is a good question. i don’t know the answer, but it is ironic because one of the early questions they ask before getting into the “real” questions, is “Are you under the influence of any drugs or alcohol?”

So if it doesn’t work when someone is drunk or high, then they could answer “no” to that question and the detector wouldn’t be able to tell! haha

dynamicduo's avatar

Lie detector tests do not work in the best of situations. They are not accurate at all. A trained liar can pass a test easily, and an untrained person can fail even when telling the truth, such as if they were anxious about the test. They should not be used in law enforcement.

aviona's avatar

Yeah I would probably have a panic attack and fail at telling the truth.

Have you taken one before @alive??

alive's avatar

no i haven’t taken one, but i have worked for the district attorney, so i have seen them on video and transcribed them. they are rarely used because they can be shown to be very unreliable, but every once in a while they come across my desk, and it is really interesting!

aviona's avatar

that’s awesome!

marinelife's avatar

To answer the specific question asked here, this site says this:

“Will drugs or alcohol affect the accuracy of a polygraph test?
Contrary to what many think, the use of drugs and/or alcohol will not assist someone to beat a polygraph test. Polygraph examiners utilize certain procedures during a polygraph test ensure that each person taking a test is responding naturally throughout the testing procedure.
If you are taking any medication you need to inform the polygraph examiner prior to beginning the test. Physiological effects that drugs have on people are immediately seen in polygraph chart tracings. Irregular physiological recordings must be satisfactorily explained.”

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