Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Article alert: Using Brain Imaging for Lie Detection: Where Science, Law, and Policy Collide

AU Langleben, DD
Moriarty, JC
AF Langleben, Daniel D.
Moriarty, Jane Campbell
TI Using Brain Imaging for Lie Detection: Where Science, Law, and Policy
AB Progress in the use of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) of
the brain to differentiate lying from truth-telling has created an
expectation of a breakthrough in the search for objective methods of lie
detection. In the last few years, litigants have attempted to introduce
fMRI-based lie detection evidence in courts. Both the science and its
possible use as courtroom evidence have spawned much scholarly
discussion. This article contributes to the interdisciplinary debate by
identifying the missing pieces of the scientific puzzle that need to be
completed if fMRI-based lie detection is to meet the standards of either
legal reliability or general acceptance. The article provides a balanced
analysis of the current science and the cases in which litigants have
sought to introduce fMRI-based lie detection. Identifying the key
limitations of the science as expert evidence, the article explores the
problems that arise from using scientific evidence before it is proven
valid and reliable. We conclude that the Daubert's "known error rate" is
the key concept linking the legal and scientific standards. We suggest
that properly controlled clinical trials are the most convincing means
to confirm or disprove the relevance of this promising laboratory
research. Given the controversial nature and potential societal impact
of this technology, collaboration of several government agencies may be
required to sponsor impartial and comprehensive clinical trials that
will guide the development of forensic fMRI technology.
PY 2013
VL 19
IS 2
BP 222
EP 234