Psychopathy and deception detection


Amy Leach, Faculty of Social Science and Humanities, 2000 Simcoe Street North, Oshawa, Ontario, Canada, L1H 7 K4. Email:


Researchers have found that most people have difficulty detecting deception; however, certain individuals are able to consistently detect deception above the level of chance. This study examined whether psychopathic traits are related to deception detection. Undergraduate participants (n = 117) indicated whether individuals in video clips were lying or telling the truth and completed a measure of psychopathy. Overall, participants' performance was significantly greater than chance. Scores on the psychopathy measure were unrelated to participants' performance and their confidence on the lie detection task. Possible explanations for the findings are briefly discussed. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.