fMRI and Lie Detection

MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Law and Neuroscience, 2016

Vanderbilt Law Research Paper No. 17-10

5 Pages Posted: 23 Dec 2016  

Anthony D. Wagner

Stanford University - Psychology

Richard J. Bonnie

University of Virginia - School of Law

BJ Casey

Yale University - Department of Psychology

Andre Davis

US Court of Appeals - Fourth Circuit

David L. Faigman

University of California Hastings College of the Law

Morris B. Hoffman

Second Judicial District Court Judge, State of Colorado

Owen D. Jones

Vanderbilt University - Law School & Dept. of Biological Sciences

Read Montague

Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University - Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute

Stephen Morse

University of Pennsylvania Law School

Marcus E. Raichle

Washington University School of Medicine

Jennifer A. Richeson

Yale University - Department of Psychology

Elizabeth S. Scott

Columbia University - Law School

Laurence Steinberg

Temple University

Kim A. Taylor-Thompson

New York University School of Law

Gideon Yaffe

Yale Law School

Date Written: 2016

Abstract

Some studies have reported the ability to detect lies, with a high degree of accuracy, by analyzing brain data acquired using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). But is this new technology ready for its day in court?

This consensus knowledge brief from the MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Law and Neuroscience takes a closer look at the potential and pitfalls of fMRI lie detection techniques, providing insight into the areas of the brain involved in lying, the impact of memory on deception, how countermeasures may foil our efforts to detect lies, and factors that can create cause for concern about experimental validity.

Keywords: lie detection, polygraph, memory, deception, evidence, neuroscience, law and neuroscience, neurolaw, brain, brain imaging, brain scan, neuroimaging, functional magnetic resonance imaging, fMRI, behavioral biology, cognitive neuroscience, cognitive psychology

JEL Classification: K14, K40, K42

Suggested Citation

Wagner, Anthony D. and Bonnie, Richard J. and Casey, BJ and Davis, Andre and Faigman, David L. and Hoffman, Morris B. and Jones, Owen D. and Montague, Read and Morse, Stephen and Raichle, Marcus E. and Richeson, Jennifer A. and Scott, Elizabeth S. and Steinberg, Laurence and Taylor-Thompson, Kim A. and Yaffe, Gideon, fMRI and Lie Detection (2016). MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Law and Neuroscience, 2016 ; Vanderbilt Law Research Paper No. 17-10. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2881586

Anthony D. Wagner

Stanford University - Psychology ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305
United States
(650) 723-4048 (Phone)
(650) 725-5699 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: https://psychology.stanford.edu/awagner

Richard J. Bonnie

University of Virginia - School of Law ( email )

580 Massie Road
Charlottesville, VA 22903
United States

BJ Casey

Yale University - Department of Psychology ( email )

P.O. Box 208205
New Haven, CT 06520-8205
United States

HOME PAGE: http://psychology.yale.edu/people/bj-casey

Andre Davis

US Court of Appeals - Fourth Circuit ( email )

United States

David L. Faigman

University of California Hastings College of the Law ( email )

200 McAllister Street
San Francisco, CA 94102
United States

Morris B. Hoffman

Second Judicial District Court Judge, State of Colorado ( email )

Denver, CO
United States

Owen D. Jones (Contact Author)

Vanderbilt University - Law School & Dept. of Biological Sciences ( email )

131 21st Avenue South
Nashville, TN 37203-1181
United States

HOME PAGE: http://law.vanderbilt.edu/bio/owen-jones

Read Montague

Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University - Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute ( email )

2 Riverside Circle
Roanoke, VA 24016
United States
540-526-2000 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://research.vtc.vt.edu/employees/read-montague/

Stephen J. Morse

University of Pennsylvania Law School ( email )

3501 Sansom Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104
United States

Marcus E. Raichle

Washington University School of Medicine ( email )

United States

Jennifer A. Richeson

Yale University - Department of Psychology ( email )

P.O. Box 208205
New Haven, CT 06520-8205
United States

HOME PAGE: http://psychology.yale.edu/people/jennifer-richeson

Elizabeth S. Scott

Columbia University - Law School ( email )

435 West 116th Street
New York, NY 10025
United States
(212) 854-9758 (Phone)
(212) 854-7946 (Fax)

Laurence Steinberg

Temple University ( email )

Weiss Hall
1701 N. 13th St.
Philadelphia, PA 19122
United States

Kim A. Taylor-Thompson

New York University School of Law ( email )

245 Sullivan Street, 627
New York, NY 10012-1099
United States
(212) 998-6396 (Phone)
(212) 995-4031 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: https://its.law.nyu.edu/facultyprofiles/profile.cfm?personID=20328

Gideon Yaffe

Yale Law School ( email )

127 Wall St
New Haven, CT 06511

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