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What's A Mugshot?

A mugshot is an identifying portrait style photo shot of a person that law enforcement takes once a criminal has been caught and booked. It is an informal term, but in common use. It is derived from the term “mug” meaning face. They're also known as booking photos.

Mugshots are generally considered public record. When something is considered public record that means that they are documents or information not considered private or confidential. Though in some states they do have different laws and if charges are not filed then a mugshot is not available.

Some databases can be easy to use, while others are more complicated. Oftentimes they can involve annoying processes or fees, and you have to know what states website to look. It can feel impossible when you realize all the searching that has to go into it. CheckPeople.com does all that pesky work for you, thank goodness, and you can let them take the reins. We compile all the information you need for a mugshot search quickly, without you having to do more than search a name.

What Is The Purpose Of A Mugshot?

Typically the purpose of a mugshot is for law enforcement to have photographic proof of an arrest, and evidence of the person arrested. This would come in handy later when needing to identify a criminal, or prove they had the right person in custody to the public or media. Sometimes people lie about their names or addresses', so having a picture is a good backup if that information has proven to be false. If there weren't pictures taken people could easily claim they weren't there or it hadn't been them. This also saves people from identity theft where crimes are pinned on them that are not theirs.

Having a mugshot available to access is also important to the public. This is because anybody looking for a criminal record of a neighbor or friend can make sure it is in fact the same person. This keeps people from believing others have records that aren't theirs, because there's a picture to help clarify.

Can Someone Refuse A Mugshot?

Many people have wondered why others would just sit there and have their mugshot taken, and if they'd tried to withhold from this common process. They want to know if that interferes with their due process.

The Fifth Amendment states that no one shall be "deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law." Due process is the entitlement of fair treatment through the countries judicial treatment, meaning everyone has rights even as they go through criminal offenses. It is considered a legal obligation of all states.

The simple answer is no, you cannot refuse a mugshot, just as you cannot refuse having your fingerprints taken, as it does not interfere with due process. If you try to not comply, the arresting officers have the right to force you to take a mugshot. It is not uncommon to see hands in some mugshots holding faces forward, or pinning shoulders to the wall. No one wants to be that person, which is why most people take their mugshot calmly.

Why Would You Want To Find Mugshot?

There are a lot of reasons to want to find a mugshot. What if your roommate lied to you and said they had never been arrested? Maybe you want to find out what happened to a childhood best friend, and whether or not you should reconnect.

A mugshot is an identifying photo that would help you know whether or not it's the same person you're trying to look up. Putting a face to the person can really solidify the facts. It's common for people to have the same name and even be from the same area. A mugshot is an invaluable tool to know it's the same person.

A case of mistaken identity would be very uncomfortable, and making that mistake could set you back as well. A mugshot can also tell you a lot about a person. If they were belligerent and refusing the photo, you'd know it by the police hands helping hold them in place. That's something you'd want to know about a person close to you.

How Do You Find Someone's Mugshot?

There are a multitude of websites you can check to search for a particular mugshot. Some require name and state, some you can just browse by state. Either way you'd have to know the state the mugshot was taken in. With CheckPeople you can search throughout the US for any mugshot records. Searching using our tool is easy and time saving and when you find what you are looking for, you get a comprehensive and easy to understand report.

Registry

Checking a state sex offender register is also another way, but that's only if you suspect the person could be a sex offender. Otherwise, you're wasting your time. There are a lot of registries, but they aren't always accurate.

Jail

It is possible to visit a specific jails website, if you know where they were booked, and scroll through there. But that involves knowing an awful lot of information. This is information about a person that you might not have and might not be able to acquire. Then what would you do?

State Department

Another place you can check is the state department's website. You can usually search by prisoner number or name in a certain section. Again, this involves knowing in advance what state someone was booked in. This is still knowledge you might not have, which is when CheckPeople.com can help. They'll figure it all out while you sit back and relax, sipping on a lemonade.

County Courthouse

If a county doesn't have an online database, then you'd have to go all the way to the county courthouse for an arrest record, and this definitely still involves paying a fee. The fees vary based on state, and there is usually a processing fee/ But what if they weren't arrested in that specific are? Then you're back to the drawing board, and out quite a bit of your time.

Police Station

An easy way to check locally would be to visit the police station and request arrest records of a person. Though that would take time out of your day, and then you'd have to talk to people. It would be so much easier to do online, but this can often involves fees, and information available depends on the state. Often things like mugshots are removed. This is what makes CheckPeople.com an invaluable resource, so that all the information you need is right at your fingertips.

What Service Should You Use?

The fastest way to find up to date mugshots is definitely a search tool like ours. With CheckPeople, you will not only get mugshots but information such as Felony Records, DUI/DWI Records, Arrest Records, Criminal Records, Police Reports, Convictions, Speeding Tickets, Sexual Offenses, Misdemeanor Charges, Active/Outstanding Warrants, and more.

A mugshot can be a shocking image to find, but definitely one you need to see.

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