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Laterals & Polygraphs


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  • Laterals & Polygraphs

    I'm sure this has been asked before but I couldn't find any posts on it.

    If an officer is applying to lateral to another agency and they fail that agency's polygraph is it standard procedure to tell their current agency they failed the polygraph?

    I seem to remember about a decade ago when an officer in Washington/Oregon who was attempting to lateral to another agency actually admitted to a rape he committed on his polygraph. Obviously phone calls were made and an investigation was done in that instance. But if a lateral applicant fails the poly because they appear to be being deceitful will the current employing agency find out? Possible termination?

  • #2
    By itself, a failed poly for another agency doesn't mean a thing. It is not grounds for discipline. An exam that turns up misconduct is another matter.

    Absent any indicia of misconduct, the examiner would not have any reason to advise the home agency anything about the hiring process, or the results of any tests taken during the process.


    • #3
      It might depend on the laws in your state. That would probably be the best course of action. When I was doing backgrounds my boss talked to me about it and from what I recall, absent a few very specific things, that no, the agency can't report it back due to liability issues.

      If you lied about something on your poly and it detects deceit what's to keep you from saying the poly was inaccurate? It's not an exact science and absence actual, physical evidence (or corroboration) you did something, how could your agency fire you? I think that was the line of thinking.


      • #4
        I just recently did a lateral polygraph and they actually made me sign a Miranda form before hand just as a precaution in case admissions of serious criminal activity were admitted. I work in Maryland. The polygrapher told me that she has had current officers admit to her about all sorts of **** including lying in reports and in court.


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