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How To Remove Your Online Mugshot For Free

Long Island DWI Lawyer

Can You Really Remove Your DUI Mugshot From the Web?

Celebrity mugshots may be the stuff that tabloid news operations depend on, but no private citizen desires to have his or her own DWI mugshot displayed online or for their employers, landlords, and other members of the public to see. Not only are these booking photographs (taken as part of a jail’s routine procedures in admitting a new inmate) not flattering, they invariably lead members of the public to assume the worst about the person. An employer may terminate an employee upon seeing the employee’s mugshot, believing the employee to be guilty of committing some crime. A landlord may refuse to rent to a person whose mugshot the landlord had seen earlier, concluding that the potential tenant would cause problems. Compounding this problem is the proliferation of websites that post mugshots from local communities and then demand money from the subject of the mugshot to have the photograph taken down.

Mugshots are Public Records 

For anyone who has had their DUI mugshot published in a periodical or on a website, it can be disheartening to know that these photographs are public records. This means there is no law that prohibits a person’s mugshot from being publicly displayed, either on a law enforcement agency’s website or on a privately-owned website. Any person can make a public information request from a law enforcement agency and obtain a specific individual’s mugshot. Because of the public nature of these mugshots, the subject of a mugshot has no legal basis to demand that a website or agency remove the mugshot from public viewing.

Do Not Pay to Have Mugshots Taken Down – Advice From a Trusted DUI Lawyer

 Some websites will offer to take down a person’s mugshot from their website – for a price. For a variety of reasons, one should refrain from this temptation:

  • It’s a business: First, paying a company to remove a mugshot from its website encourages other “entrepreneurs” to engage in similar behavior. When individuals know they can receive money from individuals eager to have their mugshots taken down, they are tempted to engage in the same behavior.
  • Websites do not coordinate with one another: Next, paying a fee to have your mugshot removed from one website does not mean that other websites must also remove your website. Additionally, there would be nothing to prevent the owner of the website from starting a new website and reposting your mugshot there (and then demanding you pay more to have that mugshot removed).
  • Owning up may be better than covering up: Rather than try to hide the fact you were arrested for DUI to keep people from discovering this information, it may be better to simply own up to the arrest and explain the facts of the case if asked. (You could explain, for instance, that while you were arrested you were not convicted of any offense.) If you are concerned about a potential employer or landlord finding out, your DUI attorney may be able to write an explanatory letter.

Contact 888-DUI-Lawyer for Help with Your DUI Charge

If you find yourself charged with DUI in Long Island, turn to the professional and experienced DUI attorneys at 888-DUI-LAWYER to help you minimize any negative consequences that can follow from a DUI arrest and conviction. We are available 24/7 for a free DUI consultation, and if you are unable to come to us, we’ll come to you.

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© 2017 888 DUI Lawyer, Richard S. Jaffe, ESQ., Partner, Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP. All rights reserved.
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