Sunday, September 23, 2012

Rule: No One Can Lie Twice

                           It's virtually impossible for someone to lie about their lie.

It is a principle that every person who seeks truth within an interview should be aware of.  It is critical that the interviewer know this principle and be able to apply it in the interview.

 When someone has lied against reality, they are not going to say, about the lie, "I told the truth" using the First Person singular pronoun, "I", the past tense verb, "told" and the simple word "truth."  It is beyond the 99% realm.

This may be difficult principle to grasp.  Jewish law says no one can lie twice.  This is the essence of it:

                                                        How most people lie. 

90% plus lies are simply by withheld or missing information.  This is our norm and it is the intent of the will to deceive that we pick up.  "I woke, we woke up, and I, we heard..." Deborah Bradley, struggling over the pronoun "I" versus the pronoun "we"; something humans are experts at by the time they are age 5, physically or developmentally. "I heard a gun shot and saw my wife lying in a pool of blood" is technically a truthful statement, yet the husband has withheld that he, himself, pulled the trigger.

A lie against reality is to say "such and such happened" when it did not.  Even the extreme rarity of "I didn't do it" reliable denial that is, in fact, a lie (perhaps 1% possibility) there is the follow up 'test' in which the subject is asked to comment upon this lie.  The rule that no one can lie twice means that the subject will be unable to say "I told the truth" about the lie of "I didn't do it".  We are in the realm of, perhaps, less than 1/10th of 1 percent.

                                      Lies Against Reality Samples:  

Charlie Rogers reported that three men attacked her.  It was a lie against reality because it did not happen.  When she was interviewed on television, she agreed to go on for a single purpose, media told us:  to affirm that it did happen in the face of those who did not believe her.  It is interesting to note that not a single media outlet reported her story in doubt.  Nor, was I, or readership, able to find even a single blog or crime commentary that said she was not truthful.  Yet, she, herself, came forward, using her own name (which the FBI had withheld)

If a person says "I didn't do it" and this is actually a lie.  They have issued a reliable denial (extremely rare):  when questioned about their lie, they will be unable to bring themselves to say "I told the truth" regarding the lie (statement) previously issued.

It was amazing how Rogers used the word "truth" but was unable to say this so very simple sentence, "I told the truth" about the attack.  It would be, seemingly, the easiest thing in the world.

Casey Anthony said she handed off Caylee to Zanny the Nanny.  This is a 100% lie against reality.  There is nothing truthful about this statement.  When challenged in questioning, she was unable to say, about her report, "I told the truth" using the first person singular, past tense verb, and the word "truth" in the sentence.

Tiffany Hartley said that three boats chased her and her husband, David, while on jet skis, scoring a head shot on David, but having her escape.  Her story changed often, she refused to take a polygraph, and feared returning to Mexico to be questioned by their investigators in light of being arrested.  She did, however, turn her story into 15 minutes of fame, making an amazing run at the talk show and news circuits, up to the Texas governor's mansion.  When asked about her story, at no time was she able to say "I told the truth" about being shot at by three boats.

In the face of a theft allegation, it is extremely rare for someone to say, "I didn't take the money" if they did, in fact, take the money.  It is very rare.

It is virtually impossible for this same guilty person, when faced with their statement, to look at the words "I didn't take the money" and say "I told the truth."

This is why in an interview, and in writing, an accused person is asked, if they have denied the allegation, "What would you say if we concluded you were lying?" to see if they will avoid saying, "I told the truth."

We have seen this, in principle, in failed polygraphs.  What is missing from the responses?

"I told the truth."

Billie Dunn didn't have so much "faith" in polygraphs.
Elisha DiPietro did "fine" in the polygraph.
Justin DiPietro "smoked" the polygraph.

Many others made varying comments when asked about failing the polygraphs, but avoided the simplest of statements:

"I told the truth"; results be damned.

This  is the principle about a "lie upon a lie" that I have written about, and we have discussed on radio and the chat room.

What is the reasoning for it?  What is the psychological basis for it?

Is it the pride and ego of mankind?  Is there something so distasteful about viewing one's own lie?

The principle for this must be understood in context:  Free Editing Process.

The Free Editing Process is where a person is speaking freely on their own, not using the language of the interviewer, and not in a prepared statement.

"But you've failed your polygraph?"

We have heard a myriad of answers from deceptive people, everything from
"police didn't show me the results" (Justin DiPietro) to "it's not admissible for a reason, you know!" to "that's just what they say..." to so many more non-affirmations of truth.

Locking Into An Answer

There are those who are slippery, therefore, they must be "locked" into an answer.

For example, regarding a failed polygraph, instead of referring to the failure, the subject might say, "I told the truth" which will then need to be specified:

"I told the truth" is true about:  my name.  My address.

This type of person, who splits the truth, must be locked into the specific question on the polygraph:

"Regarding the question, Do you know what happened to your daughter, you reportedly failed.  How do you speak to this?"

The wiggling room is reduced greatly, and the answer, "I told the truth about what happened" won't be heard from the liar.

The Ramseys reportedly failed a number of polygraphs until they found one polygrapher who passed them.  The Ramsey attorneys had the polygrapher sign a non-disclosure contract with them that all he could say was "they passed" and was not permitted to disclose what questions he asked them.

This fact may be lost on a gullible public, but not upon those with discernment.


John Mc Gowan said...


So let me try to some up.

If person says "I didnt Kill #####" and we know it to be a lie.

They will not lie on top of that by saying "I told the truth"

Is that what your saying?


MissUnderstood said...

What about "it's the truth", or "that's the truth"?

For example:

Person 1 says: "I don't believe you"

Person 2 says: "It's the truth" (and maybe adds in "I don't care if you don't believe me")

Is using "it" distancing, and not specific? Or is the statement just not reliable, but not yet deceptive, and more questions should be asked?

MissUnderstood said...


"I didn't kill #####" is usually reliable, because it uses "I" first person singular, "didn't" past tense, "kill #####" specific action and name. But if someone was that good of a liar, then yes, I assume they would not be able to lie 2x about the event. Idk though for sure, hopefully someone with more experience can weigh in.

Statement Analysis Blog said...

Miss Understood,

I find this to be a remarkable phenomena and would like to learn more about the Talmudic teaching that it originated from. I already know that Avinoam Sapir (LSI) is rare genius in his power of observation and critical thinking, but what of the rabbis that made this original observation?

I can take a principle and do a lot of research, immediately, on line by getting transcripts. I can also, more slowly, apply principles on the job, but what of the ancient rabbis?

It is an amazing principle.


Statement Analysis Blog said...


It is used in the questionnaire which was tested by the army's internal investigations versus the polygraph with exact results. If someone denies an activity (falsely) they will not be able to refer back to their denial and lie about it saying, "I told the truth" about it. They might say "I tell the truth" r "I don't lie" but not in the easy, reliable formula.

It has taken me a long time to digest this and get a sense of "ownership" of it.

I have always believed it, and attempted to use it in interviewing, but lately the clarity has been getting stronger for me.


John Mc Gowan said...



John Mc Gowan said...

For me the best part about this article is the last section on.


This is for me a great too to have in my deception detection box.

When i think about it,it really is a sneaky way to get round answering the question.

Clever very clever.

Anonymous said...

After reading some transcripts of MacDonald-after first hearing about him on this blog-I found myself laughing out loud when reading the Army interviewers assessment of him. In one, the guy repeatedly states that his notetaking isn't up to par. Another goes on to claim the man was disillusioned with the Army. Doh!

In one part he claims he didn't know he was a suspect into he went to CID, several months later, to inquire about what was going on with his case. Then he was read his rights. Lol!

It's like if you ask anything of us you must expect to be incarcerated.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of discernment, did Sierra Lamar's mother take a polygraph? Did she pass it?

Forever Curious said...

Peter two questions:

1. How does this principle work with fantasy v. reality? Suppose Casey in her rich make-believe life handed off Caylee to Zanny. Would she still be unable to lie- does her brain detect the difference between her make-believe world and reality?

2. On a similar note, what happens when a person is delusional or has a delusional episode? Does that override this principle?

Anonymous said...

Casey already had Zanny scripted as she or a member of her team researched her from the apt. records.

Jen said...

I don't know if this answers your question but it made me think of a specific part of CA interrogation in 'her office @ Universal', she tells her lies and then the detectives are confronting her with the fact that she has lied, lied, lied about her job, where she dropped her daughter off, ect & how is lying supposed to help them find Caylee. She says 'I've told you the truth', but then follows with..'I legitimately haven't seen my daughter for 31 days...I don't want anything to happen to her'..(paraphrased). I'm pretty sure she says it a few times with different qualifiers, like...'I have told the truth, the last time I saw my daughter was when I dropped her off w/ ZFG' or something close to that. I'm not sure if that puts her in the small percentage who will lie 2x because she does explain what she is being 'truthful' about, but she is lying about that too! I swear, I think Casey Anthony is lying sociopath that could keep scores of forensic psychologists busy for centuries!

Anonymous said...

In Dewani's case they will make certain that the rule of 3's remain true as they will let the triggerman go if he testifies against Dewani. Four minus ONE equals 3.

C5H11ONO said...

What if they say, "i didn't lie", which is also first person, past tense and event specific?

Tania Cadogan said...

MissUnderstoodSeptember 23, 2012 6:45 AM
What about "it's the truth", or "that's the truth"?

For example:

Person 1 says: "I don't believe you"

Person 2 says: "It's the truth" (and maybe adds in "I don't care if you don't believe me")

Is using "it" distancing, and not specific? Or is the statement just not reliable, but not yet deceptive, and more questions should be asked?

Hi Missunderstood.

IT is distancing
They don't tell us what IT is so we can't assume.
We look for first person singular event specific

The truth could be that their name is bill bloggs, their age, their address and so on.
My next question if they said "It's the truth" would be What is the truth?
I would pin them down to specifcs.
I would make sure i phrased the question so they had to provide the specifics, any reply would be checked to ee if it was a reflection of what was asked - reflected language.
I would also be looking for qualifiers, dos the sentence work if additional words are used?
What additional words were used?
Were the qualifiers from free editing or reflected language?

Remember also tis is close, tht is distancing.
I would be looking to see if this or that, these or those etc show up and where. Are they free editing or reflected.

If in doubt the interviewer can always ask another question or more to seek clarity.
Liars will skip around the answer or lie, they don't like being pinned down to a specific sentence.
We can also go on to ask question not related to the sensitive area and then come back to it, phrasing it differently to see if the answer is consistent or not and if it changed, how it changed, what words, tenses, pronouns.

As the interviewer we are not limited to a set number of questions, we can and must seek clarification, what they meant when they said words such as it, they, those and so on.
We let the subject guide us and from their responseswe can ask another question that is more specific, we let them guide us in what to ask
We ask a question
They answer
Our next question is now based on what they told us and so on

Tania Cadogan said...


C5H11ONOSeptember 23, 2012 1:13 PM
What if they say, "i didn't lie", which is also first person, past tense and event specific?

Anything in the negative is sensitive.
It is not event specific as you have written it
"I didn't lie" ... about what?
Instead of telling us what they didn't do they should tell us what they did do.
If they said, as an example, "I didn't lie about taking the money"
I would ask "What did you lie about?"

Also what is their definition of lie?
Do they mean making up something?
Do they mean ommitting something?

This is why it is so important to listen to what the subject is telling us.
we are listening to not only what they are saying, we are also listening to what they aren't saying.

I hope this makes sense.

Anonymous said...

I grew up with a mother that lied about everything. Usually it was how she was a victim..... of rape, hit by a car, Fired for being a woman, etc...

Even if you had solid proof and held in front of her face.. She would stand by her lie either by turning it back on me/them with "you forged that, u must have blocked out the tragic memory (her fav) or your crazy" or most common would be to go off on a tangent about something else... Often more lies about anything to divert the attention.. Most her life it worked. Like you get so wrapped up in this next story you forget what you addressed at first.

I see it in business all the time. Someone will ask a direct question about a task, get 20 mins of babble and then somehow be impressed by the person despite getting no actual answer to the question.

So....after years with my mom, I really became aware of that inability to just directly answer direct questions but statement analysis has brought such a deeper understanding for me.

It has taken the frustration out of "why did they not answer that question" where now I just instinctively realize they are lying or really don't know the answer but are trying to make everyone believe.

MissUnderstood said...

Thanks Hobnob!

Anonymous said...

Question, if someone repearedly gives à reliable denial over time as in 'i didnt do it', and when asked 'Why should i believe you?' Answers 'i Dont know, Thats à question for you not me', 'i Dont know, because Thats what people do, they believe eachother'. And after à longer time gets tired and angry and says 'i dont know, maybe you shouldn't'. Basically, tje answer repeatedly is 'i Dont know'. Does it nullify the reliable denial over time or how should it be concluded?

Anonymous said...

Note to above: reliable denial as in'i didnt @@@@', and 'no i didnt' when asked specifically.