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How to Remove Mugshot Online

1920s Mug Shot of George Coulson

How to Remove Mugshot Online


Early 20th Century Mugshot of Man Charged With Property Theft CrimesThe Oregon Legislature passed a law that can force fee-charging mugshot and arrest websites to remove arrest photos, names, and other personal info from their websites. For details, see below for the bill in pertinent part, HB 3467 (2013), and which isnow codified as ORS 646A.806 (Website with photographs and information about arrested persons).

These arrest websites are the modern and high-tech equivalent of public shaming, the stocks, the pillory.

So be it, but charging ‘fees’–often hundreds of dollars–for removing public photos funded by tax-payers borders on the parasitical, the mercenary, and the extortive.

Here’s the breakdown on the new arrest picture law and how it matters to you or a loved one.

Who can have their photo, name, etc. removed? Those who have been either:

(1) acquitted,

(2) not convicted,

(3) pled down to a violation, or

(4) were granted an expungement (set aside record of arrest or conviction under ORS 137.225). (For various articles and information on how to expunge your record in Oregon, see Essent’s Oregon Expungement Guide).

How? – If you request in writing and give written proof–official court records or law-enforcement–of any of (1)–(4) above, you have adequate proof.

Tip – Make Sure the Records are Certified: Request that the court clerk or law-enforcement agency “certify” the documents or check your own existing records to see if it has a stamp showing “official” or “certified” document. Certification is usually about $5.00 per document. It’s worth doing in anticipation of getting the run-around from the website, perhaps as a pretext (“How do we know these are “official” court records!?”). You don’t want to wait 30 days to hear back that the records aren’t “official”, and meanwhile that horrendous arrest or mugshot photo is sitting on the website and all over the “internets”.

How long will it take? – The website must remove the photos within 30 days.

What if the mugshot website doesn’t remove the photos?Contact Essent Law. This new law is added to the Unfair Trade (Business) Practices Act, ORS 646.605 to 646.652.

What’s the UTPA? It is a “do good” law in that you are in a manner of speaking stepping in the shoes of the Oregon Attorney General by enforcing fair business dealings and practices. The Oregon UTPA is formidable: you can be entitled to minimum damages, attorney fees, and so forth. The UTPA is powerful and there are a lot of shady and sharp practices out there. Don’t be afraid to use it.

P.S. Which actor does the mug shot above look like (especially in the front-profile aspect)?


New bill allowing those with Oregon arrests to remove their photos from fee-charging mugshot websites by Oregon lawyer, Timothy D. LaBadie, of Essent Law llc


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