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Private Attorney Testing


Bendiksen & Ball is the oldest private polygraph firm in the Greater Seattle area. Established is 1974 by Dewey Gillespie, Ball & Gillespie Polygraph has been providing polygraph services to criminal defense attorneys for longer than any other private polygraph company. Ball & Gillespie Polygraph's reputation has been established through 34 years of service in the Seattle area.

Our chief examiner is Chris Bendiksen. He has graduated from an American Polygraph Association approved Polygraph School. In addition, he completes 40+ hours per year of continuing education to sharpen his polygraph and interviewing skills. He is a member of the American Polygraph Association, the Northwest Polygraph Examiners Association, and the American Association of Police Polygraphists.

What kind of cases lend themselves to successful use of a polygraph?

A successful polygraph examination can be of assistance to you as defendant's attorney in a variety of cases. Criminal cases, civil tort cases, insurance disputes, bankruptcy law, marital and family law, sex abuse allegations, real estate law, any case in which the case revolves around a factual dispute between two parties.

In close criminal cases, a positive polygraph examination may turn the tide for you. When, for example, you believe the prosecutor may question the reliability of a key witness, a positive test result can provide ammunition to the line prosecutor which he can present to his supervisor to convince the supervisor to drop a case.

In most types of civil cases, your case is in court because two parties are having a factual dispute over an event or incident. These factual disputes can be successfully resolved with a polygraph examination.

Conversely, we have had less success with the use of polygraph examinations in cases where intent is the critical issue. However, issues of intent can be resolved by polygraph examinations.

When should you begin thinking about a polygraph examination for a client?

Obviously, the most useful time to have your client polygraphed is prior to the time a prosecutor has reached a charging decision. You want to get the prosecutor wondering early whether the information from his investigators and informants is accurate. You want to be able to go into the prosecutor's office and pitch your side of a case not only with facts, but those facts corroborated by a positive polygraph test.

On the other hand, since many cases come in to the attorney after charges have already been filed, these is nothing wrong with having your client submit to a polygraph exam after charging.

Should you let your client be polygraphed by the police or the government?

There are three arguments against allowing your clients to submit to a polygraph examination by the police or the government. First, the interpretation of the test is subjective. Therefore, unless you know the government examiner and believe in his honesty, impartiality and experience, you should not allow him to test your client.

Second, you give the prosecutor the opportunity to conduct discovery about your case directly from your client. You never know what question the prosecutor's examiner will ask during the examination or the pre-test interview, and when your client's answer to those questions may surface later and hurt your case.

Third, polygraph examiners have two professions. They are polygraph examiners, but they are also professional interviewers and interrogators. Typically, a polygraph examiner for a particular department or government agency is one of the best, if not the very best interviewer/interrogator in that department. Remember, the opinion of the examiner as to the results of the polygraph test is generally not admissible in court, but every word your client utters from the moment he enters the polygraph examination room until he leaves that room is admissible.

Who should you go to for a polygraph examination?

Remember that the most important criteria for selecting a private polygraph examiner is the examiner's training and education, his experience, and his reputation in the legal community for accuracy, impartiality, honesty and experience. No private polygraph company has a finer reputation than Bendiksen & Ball Polygraph. In the last 37 years, Bendiksen & Ball has established a reputation of honesty and accuracy which is above reproach and without peer.

Our reputation is known throughout Washington State. Contact the Washington Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Bendiksen & Ball is an associate member. Our reputation is also known among police and government agencies from Bellingham to Vancouver. You can be sure that the results of our examinations will be accepted by prosecutors and police departments.

At your request, should your client pass his polygraph examination we will make the pre-test materials, the polygraph charts themselves, and all other test materials available to the police or government examiner for their review.

How do I protect the confidentiality of the examination?

Unlike an examination given by the government or a police agency, everything about an examination with Terry Ball Polygraph is considered confidential, attorney-client work product. We will ask you to provide us with a letter to that effect before the examination.

Everything about the examination, including the simple fact that a test was administered, will not be released without your prior written permission. You are in control about the release of any and all information about the examination.

How do I arrange for my client to be tested?

Bendiksen & Ball has offices in Lynnwood, Washington. Call our offices to discuss your proposed use of the polygraph. We will discuss possible test questions and techniques with you. If you decide to schedule an examination, we can usually arrange for a polygraph examination within two or three days.

Don’t be fooled by an untrained "operator."

Although courts and commentators continue to question the reliability of polygraph tests results, among certain courts the long-term trend may be toward a more liberal attitude regarding the admissibility of polygraph test results. Outside of formal court proceedings, polygraph exams may be used effectively to advance the interests of your client. in negotiations with the prosecutor, the polygraph is - and will continue to be - a valuable defence tool.

Selection of a polygraph examiner is crucial to providing the very best defense for your clients. There are no licensing laws for polygraph examiners in the State of Washington. There are untrained "polygraph operators" offering polygraph services to attorneys. Don't trust the credibility of your practice to a self taught "polygraph operator".

Bendiksen & Ball can offer you professional services at reasonable prices to allow you to use the polygraph as part of your practice. Our examiners are properly trained and complete annual re-training to update their skills.