Lie detection, also referred to as deception detection, uses questioning techniques along with technology that record physiological functions to ascertain truth and falsehood in response. It is commonly used by law enforcement and has historically been an inexact science. There are a wide variety of technologies available for this purpose. The most common and long used measure is the polygraph, which is considered by the U.S. National Academy of Sciences to be unreliable.
The study of physiological methods for deception tests measuring emotional disturbances began in the early 1900s. Benussi was the first to work on practical deception tests based on physiological changes. He detected changes in inspiration-expiration ratio—findings confirmed by N.E. Burtt. Burtt conducted studies that emphasized the changes in quantitative systolic blood-pressure. W.M. Marston studied blood-pressure and noted increase in systolic blood pressure of 10 mm Hg or over indicated guilt through using the tycos sphygmomanometer, with which he reported 90-100% accuracy. His studies used students and actual court cases. Then in 1913 W.M. Marston determined systolic blood-pressure by oscillatory methods and his findings cite definite changes in blood pressure during the deception of criminal suspects. In 1921 Larson criticized Marston's intermittent blood pressure method because emotional changes were so brief they could be lost. To adjust for this he modified the Erlanger sphymograph to give a continuous blood pressure and pulse curve and used it to study 4,000 criminals.
John Augustus Larson was a Police Officer for Berkeley, California, United States, and famous for his invention of modern polygraph used in forensic investigations. He was the first American police officer having an academic doctorate and to use polygraph in criminal investigations. After a famed career in criminal investigation, he died of heart attack in Nashville, Tennessee at the age of 72.
Larson was born in Shelburne, Nova Scotia, Canada, of Nordic parents. His family moved to New England in his early childhood, though his parents soon divorced. He studied biology at Boston University holding down odd jobs to support himself, ranging from busboy and paperboy to stonecutter and elevator operator. In 1915 he earned a master's degree with a thesis on fingerprint identification. This work inspired his interest in forensic science and led him to the University of California, Berkeley, where he obtained a Ph.D. in physiology in 1920. Having done moonlighting work as a student for the Berkeley Police Department, he joined the force in 1920. His great insight was to integrate a test for blood pressure, developed by William Moulton Marston, with measurements for pulse, respiration and skin conductivity, to make a comprehensive lie detection tool. He was also highly encouraged by his police chief August Vollmer.
Zvonimir Roso (March 6, 1938 – March 4, 1997) was a Croatian criminologist and psychologist, one of South-eastern Europe’s foremost authorities in the science of polygraph and the founder of what is now known as "Zagreb School of Polygraph".
Roso was born in Kuna Pelješka and lived in Zagreb, Croatia. He earned his BA in Psychology from University of Zagreb (Croatia) and later pursued postgraduate studies in psychotherapy at the School Of Medicine, University Of Zagreb. He received a Master’s Degree in criminology from Skopje University and was professor at the Police Academy of Zagreb.