The NJ Supreme Court is considering an appeal involving the admissibility of polygraph results of an uncounseled suspect. The suspect apparently stipulated as to the admissibility of the results before submitting to the test, however, he was not represented by counsel. I believe that Miranda may also be implicated in the appeal.
I bring this subject up because I was, coincidentally, consulted by a New Jersey state trooper who was convicted of official misconduct based on evidence which included a polygraph. He too submitted to a polygraph which purportedly concluded that certain responses were deceptive. The trooper was previously decorated for undercover work but was now looking at 10-20 years by virtue of the conviction.
I have a serious problem with the admissibility of polygraphs based on stipulations. My reasons are two-fold. First and foremost, how can polygraph results ever be admissible in any respect if the New Jersey Rules of Evidence have long declared them inadmissible based on unreliability? If the tests are not reliable, they should not be introduced at trial as you are essentially providing the jury with unreliable scientific evidence. Second, the tests are never admissible under any circumstance to benefit a suspect. Does it sound fair then that they can be used to hammer a suspect?