Mugshot – Arrests – Generally
A ”Mugshot” is a police or booking photograph typically taken after a person is arrested for a crime. The original purpose of the mugshot was to allow law enforcement to have a photographic record of the arrested individual to allow for identification by victims and investigators. Most mugshots are typically two parted. They contain one photo from the front and one from the side. Mugshots may also be compiled into a book in order to determine the identity of a criminal for Law enforcement use to show victims and witnesses.
Once upon a time, a person’s Mugshot was only used for legitiment police work and in high-profile cases, nowadays mugshots for even the most petty misdemeanor offense are being published by the jail’s websites! Once a mugshot hits the jail’s website, then Mugshot posting companies copy and paste (aka “scrape”) the image into their own private site and then charge the victim to remove it as they hide behind the 1st Amendment for the public’s “right to know.”
The prejudicial nature of having your mugshot circulated around the internet without your permission is a dreadful experience. A Mugshot in our justice system has long been associated with the familiar old ‘wanted’ posters in the post offices, and criminals in motion pictures and television. So, the mere inference that the person was arrested by the police as portrayed in the mugshot is seemingly automatic proof he/she is a bad person. The Mugshot memorializes this and is damming. Something needs to be done on a Federal level about this.
Useful News is:
Each State has its own legislation on what a person’s rights are with regard to compelling a private mugshot website to take down a persons mugshot. However, many states have no laws directly on point to give these companies consequences for not taking down a person’s mugshot. Thus, legal action must be taking in many cases to force these companies to act and be responsible when told to remove a person’s image.