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Frye v. United States

Significance, Impact, The Polygraph


James Alphonzo Frye


United States

Appellant's Claim

That the trial court erred when it refused the introduction of a systolic blood pressure deception test and expert testimony on the test as evidence.

Chief Lawyers for Appellant

Richard V. Mattingly, Foster Wood

Chief Lawyers for Appellee

Peyton Gordon, J. H. Bilbrey

Justices for the Court

George Ewing Martin, Constantine J. Smyth, Josiah A. Van Orsdel (writing for the court)

Justices Dissenting



Washington, D.C.

Date of Decision

3 December 1923


Upheld the conviction of Frye by refusing to admit the deception test into evidence.

Related Cases

  • Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals, Inc., 509 U.S. 579 (1993).
  • United States v. Scheffer, 118 S.Ct. 1261 (1998).


American Polygraph Association. http://www.polygraph.org

Further Readings

  • Cushman, Robert F. Leading Constitutional Decisions. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1982.
  • Green, Eric D., and Charles R. Nesson. "Expert Testimony, Scientific Proof, and Junk Science." Problems, Cases, and Materials on Evidence. Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1994.
  • Lyons, Thomas. "Frye, Daubert, and Where Do We Go From Here?" Rhode Island Bar Journal, January 1997.

Additional topics

Law Library - American Law and Legal InformationNotable Trials and Court Cases - 1918 to 1940