Fort Collins Sex Offender Polygraph Attorney
Use of Polygraphs in Sex Offender Treatment

The use of polygraph tests are required in sex offender treatment, but is under scrutiny by state legislators for the cost and the validity.

The Colorado Sex Offender Management Board (SOMB) relies heavily on the use of polygraphs to not only monitor convicted sex offenders’ compliance with probation, but also to delve into sexual histories, and assess attitudes about their crime. For years, this practice has been standard, but recently Colorado’s use of polygraphs has been met with scrutiny by the state legislature – for the amount of the state’s budget to cover the cost of the polygraphs and for the validity of the tests themselves.

Sex Offender Polygraphs in the Colorado Department of Corrections

With indeterminate sentencing in sex offense cases, many Colorado inmates are held in prison indefinitely until they are deemed as less of a risk. In order to have a chance at release, the inmate must participate in sex offender treatment and take the required polygraphs. The waiting list for treatment is usually longer than an offender’s minimum sentence and the state covers the cost of these polygraphs while an inmate is in custody. Currently, the budget for the polygraph program is $5 million dollars. Once a sex offender inmate is released, parole continues to cover the costs of the polygraphs.

Polygraphs – Not the Only Form of Management in Larimer County Sex Offender Supervision?

According to the SOMB, polygraphs are not to be considered in isolation when making treatment and supervision decisions. They should be one of many factors. Some legislators believe that too much weight is placed on polygraphs. Remember, polygraphs cannot be presented as evidence in a criminal or civil case – due to the unreliability of the test. Yet, failed polygraphs make it harder to get parole and can lead to heightened restrictions for those already on parole or probation.

Failing a Polygraph in Fort Collins: What Comes Next?

Polygraphs tests can have three different results: non-deceptive, inconclusive, and deceptive. A non-deceptive result means that the polygraph is passed. A person will not have to take another maintenance test for 6 months. Inconclusive means that the polygrapher is unable to read the results, so, the test needs to be retaken at the expense of the state or offender. A deceptive result means a failed test and the offender has to keep retaking the test every 60 days until it is passed.


If you or someone you love has been charged with a sexual crime like Sexual Assault in Larimer, Boulder, or Grand County, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact the best criminal defense attorneys from the O’Malley Law Office at 970-658-0007 today. Together, we can protect your future.

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