Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Tennis Official’s Defense Goes on the Offensive

Alan Goodman, victim. ID Photo.

The tennis official accused of murder came out swinging this week as the defense team for Lois Goodman announced a former FBI polygraph expert tested her and concluded that she truthfully denied responsibility for the death of her husband Alan.

“Lois Goodman has passed a polygraph test to clear herself in her husband’s death,” said defense attorney Robert Sheehan to the LA Times. The test was administered by Jack Trimarco, who headed the FBI’s polygraph unit in the 1990s.

Polygraph tests are not always reliable indicators of truth. And many observers remain skeptical of a test of the defendant by an investigator hired by her defense attorneys. The LA District Attorney’s office had no immediate comment on the test, and no indication if they would ask for Goodman to be tested by a prosecution polygraph expert.

Goodman, who was arrested in New York City just before the start of the US Open tennis tournament in which she was to serve as referee, has since been extradited to Los Angeles and freed on bail. She is confined to the Woodland Hills home where her husband Alan was found dead back in April. Goodman says her husband had passed out and fallen down the stairs — investigators believe she killed her husband by breaking a coffee mug against his head and then cutting him with the shards.

A possible motive cited was a love affair by Goodman, which was strongly denied by the couple’s daughter Allison Goodman Rogers who told ABC: “There was no affair. It was completely made up.”

“They’ve been depicting my mom as this cold-blooded person, and it couldn’t be further from the truth”, Goodman Rogers said. “She has a huge heard, and everything that’s been in the press has been very negative. It’s not her.”

A date for Goodman’s preliminary hearing was supposed to be set at a hearing last week, but defense attorneys said they needed more time to look through the voluminous police reports, so calendaring the prelim is now scheduled to take place at another hearing on November 8.

Love Means Nothing to Tennis Official Accused of Murdering Husband

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