PCPD Asks City Commission for Funding to Help with Investigations

By: Betsy Goldin Email
By: Betsy Goldin Email

The Panama City Police Department is asking the City Commission for $3,795 for software updates that they say will help with criminal investigations.
They need the money for new CVSA (Computer Voice Stress Analyzer) updates.
CVSA is a tool the department has been using for more than a decade to aid in their investigations.
“In simple terms, it's a lie detector test and what it does is it checks for the indications of deception," said Sgt. Mark Smith with the police department. "It's really nothing new, we've had a CVSA laptop computer, it's just the current one is right at nine years old."
There has been some controversy surrounding the technology that is used by both the American military and police departments across the country.
In 2006 ABC Primetime did an investigation of the lie detector and Charles Humble, chairman and CEO of the National Institute for Truth Verification.
They concluded that the technology was no better than "flipping a coin."
But Sgt. Smith said CVSA is not the only thing used during an investigation and is actually very effective.
"It is an investigative tool. It's not what makes or breaks the case, but it's an investigative tool that provides us with another means to help verify what people are telling us," he said.
The City Commission will meet Tuesday to consider funding for the analyzer.


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